Maine Historical Society

MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

PRESERVING HISTORY
ENGAGING MINDS
CONNECTING MAINE

Upcoming Programs & Events

Events on this page: October | November | December | Ongoing Programs | Podcasts | Group Trips | Exhibitions | Regional Genealogy Events

Program fees and registration details are listed in the program description. Programs for MHS members are free or discounted. Support MHS by becoming a member today. All programs take place at our facilities at 489 Congress Street in Portland, unless otherwise noted. Click here for Directions or Parking information.

Please review our Refund and Return Policies for tickets and event admissions.

If you have questions about any of the programs listed below, please contact us at (207) 774-1822.

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Ongoing Programs

Wadsworth-Longfellow House Tours - Daily, May - October. See details.

Exhibition Galleries (self-guided) - Changing schedule, year-round. See details.

Historical Walking Tours of Portland - June - Columbus Day. Tours offered Monday through Friday at 1:30pm, and on select special weekend dates. See details.

Library Tours - First Wednesday of the month at noon (with a few exceptions). See below for next scheduled tour.

October Programs

Wednesday, October 24 – Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Longfellow's Haunted House 2018

Longfellow's Haunted House 2018



Don't miss our annual evening tour of the Longfellow House in the week leading up to Halloween! Based on Longfellow's poem, "Haunted Houses"
("All houses wherein men have lived and died /
Are haunted houses")

the tour is written and led by seasoned guide James Horrigan. It evokes the various family members that died in the Wadsworth-Longfellow House over its long history. Two tour types will be offered this year; one for families and one for adults.

Family Tour
This 30-minute tour is followed by cookies and cider in the ell of the house. Offered on October 26 and 27 only, at 5pm. Each tour is limited to 15 people. All children must be accompanied by an adult.
Advance registration is required. Cost: $10 MHS Members; $15 general admission.

+ October 26, 5:00pm

+ October 27, 5:00pm

Adult Tour
This 60-minute tour is followed by a variety of beverages – including beer and cider – and snacks in the ell of the house. There are 5 tour evenings: October 24-27, and 30 from 6-7:30pm.
Advance reservations are required. Each tour is limited to 12 and appropriate for ages 21+. Cost: $18 MHS Members; $25 general admission.

+ October 24, 6:00pm SOLD OUT

+ October 25, 6:00pm SOLD OUT

+ October 26, 6:00pm SOLD OUT

+ October 27, 6:00pm SOLD OUT

+ October 30, 6:00pm SOLD OUT

November Programs

Wednesday, November 7, 12:00 pm

Behind-the-Scenes Library Tour

Behind-the-Scenes Library Tour

Tour Guide: Nicholas Noyes, Curator of Library Collections

This 45-minute tour of the Brown Library, fully renovated in 2009, takes participants throughout the library's reading rooms and behind-the-scenes into the archive, normally closed to the public. Nicholas Noyes covers the history of the building, architectural details, the basics of doing research in the library, and even shares a few treasures from the collection.

Free and open to the public. Limited to 10; sign up in advance by sending an email to nnoyes@mainehistory.org or calling 774-1822 x207.

Tuesday, November 13, 5:30 pm

Maine Historical Society's annual celebration Maine History Maker Award honoring innovators in Maine’s food industry

Maine Historical Society's annual celebration Maine History Maker Award honoring innovators in Maine’s food industry


Each year Maine Historical Society recognizes an individual in Maine who has made significant contributions to the community. Our Maine History Maker Award recognizes traditions of innovation and leadership that have defined Maine throughout its history. This year, Maine Historical Society will recognize five innovators in Maine's food industry as its 2018 Maine History Maker.

This year’s honorees carry forward Maine's heritage of leadership in the food industry which dates back centuries--to when Maine merchants, shipbuilders, and fishermen provided fish, agricultural products, rum, and ice to international markets, to Mainers' invention of the canning industry, to the emergence of lobsters, blueberries, and whoopie pies as iconic Maine foods. Our honorees have helped reimagine the food industry, created new products and markets, helped revitalize Maine's economy, and are enriching Maine's sense of place. They have broken trail for Maine's current food renaissance and created opportunity for all who are driving Maine's food industry today.

Our Maine History Maker honorees are:

+ The Barber Family: Through its stewardship of Barber Foods, members of the Barber family have been civic leaders, economic catalysts, and committed members of the Maine community.

+ Sam Hayward: His commitment to local foods and partnership with Maine providers and producers has had an immense impact on Maine’s restaurant scene.

+ David L. Geary: David’s vision and hard work helped create an industry where there virtually was none, and he has mentored and created opportunity for a new generation of passionate brewers who are reshaping Maine.

+ O’Hara Corporation: The O’Hara family’s long contribution and commitment to Maine, leadership of Maine’s seafood sector, ability to evolve, and continued vitality make it an ideal honoree.

+ Smith’s Farm: The interests of consumers for sustainable products reflect practices that have defined Smith’s Farm since Oliver and Isabelle started farming in 1859. We will honor the recent generations as well, recognizing the growth of Smith Packing.

The program features:
+ Presentation of the Maine History Maker Award to each honoree by MHS executive director Steve Bromage.
+ Panel discussion with the honorees on the future of Maine’s food industry.

Join us on November 13th at the University of New England’s Innovation Hall!
5:00pm: Reception: Wine, Beer, and Light Fare
6:00pm: Maine History Award Ceremony & Panel Discussion

Tickets are $50 with proceeds supporting Maine Historical Society's statewide celebration of Maine's Bicentennial.

See past Maine History Makers here.

Register Here!

Thursday, November 15, 6:00 pm

The Land that Sustains Us: Stories from the Field

Photos by Brendan Bullock for Maine Farmland Trust.

Photos by Brendan Bullock for Maine Farmland Trust.

with Maine Farmland Trust
No matter how many seasons they have been with their soil, farmers develop a strong connection with their land. For each farmer, this relationship is unique and therefore, manifests differently into the food we eat and the communities we live in. Maine Farmland Trust will host three farmers for a live storytelling night at the Maine Historical Society to explore these relationships. The yearlong exhibitions, Maine Eats: The Food Revolution Starts Here, will be open and available for viewing. Light, local food will be served after the program.

$10 for MHS & MFT Members, $15 General Admission.

Register Here!

Saturday, November 24, 10:00 am

A Story with Santa

A Story with Santa

Do you have a holiday wish to share with Santa? Meet him and Mrs. Claus at Maine Historical Society! Join in the fun as Santa shares one of his – and our - favorite stories of the season, Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett. Following the story guests can have their photo taken with Santa and sample some gingerbread treats, Henry Longfellow’s favorite desert!

This event is free and open to the public

Monday, November 26, 7:00 pm

Gerald Dickens Performs "A Christmas Carol

Gerald Dickens.

Gerald Dickens.


For the second year, Maine Historical Society is pleased to offer a special performance of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, performed by Dickens’ great-great-grandson, Gerald Dickens.

This one-man show is inspired by the 1860s performances by Charles Dickens. Offered in the historic First Parish Church, this is a rare opportunity to see this historic work of literature this holiday season. Gerald Dickens has worked as an actor, director, and producer for many years and has appeared at several arts and literary festivals in the United Kingdom.

For tickets, click below or call 207-774-1822. For more information on the event visit www.byerschoice.com.

*Note: photography or audio/video recording during the performance is prohibited.

Performance venue: First Parish Church, 425 Congress St, Portland

Ticket price: $25 MHS members / $35 general admission / $15 for age 18 and under.

Register Here!

Thursday, November 29, 5:30 pm

Book talk: A Story of Maine in 112 Objects

Book talk: <i>A Story of Maine in 112 Objects</i>

With editor Bernard Fishman
The Maine State Museum is America’s oldest state museum, known to many as “Maine’s Smithsonian” because of the breadth and diversity of its holdings—nearly a million objects covering every aspect of the state’s cultural, biological, and geological history. The Maine State Museum recently published A Story of Maine in 112 Objects, the first book to use the museum’s collections to tell the whole story of Maine, from a 400 million-year-old plant that lived in what is now Baxter State Park to a Russian folk costume that belonged to Samantha Smith.

Join us to hear from Bernard Fishman, the museum’s director and the book’s editor, whose illustrated talk will tell us about the amazing Maine artifacts that constitute this visual biography of Maine and how they were chosen. Before and after the program, begin your holiday shopping in the museum store and pick up a copy for that perfect holiday present.

This event is free and open to the public

December Programs

Wednesday, December 5, 12:00 pm

Behind-the-Scenes Library Tour

Behind-the-Scenes Library Tour

Tour Guide: Nicholas Noyes, Curator of Library Collections

This 45-minute tour of the Brown Library, fully renovated in 2009, takes participants throughout the library's reading rooms and behind-the-scenes into the archive, normally closed to the public. Nicholas Noyes covers the history of the building, architectural details, the basics of doing research in the library, and even shares a few treasures from the collection.

Free and open to the public. Limited to 10; sign up in advance by sending an email to nnoyes@mainehistory.org or calling 774-1822 x207.

Wednesday, December 12, 7:00 pm

Christmas Bells: A Holiday Handbell Concert

Christmas Bells: A Holiday Handbell Concert

In partnership with The Pine Tree Academy Bell Ringers

Join MHS and The Pine Tree Academy Bell Ringers for a program of seasonal music, including arrangements set to the words of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow’s poem, Christmas Bells (I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day).

The Pine Tree Academy Bell Ringers play five octaves (61 bells) of English handbells and five octaves of choir chimes. The group consists of young musicians in grades 9 through 12. The Bell Ringers have performed throughout New England, Europe, and South America.

Performance venue: First Parish Church, 425 Congress Street, Portland, ME

For more information on The Pine Tree Academy Bell Ringers visit www.pinetreeacademy.org.

Ticket Price: $10 for MHS, $15 general admission

Register today!

Program Podcasts

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Group Trips

Vietnam & Cambodia: The Charms of the Mekong
October 13-28, 2018 - From $4,979 per person

Join MHS as we cruise along the Mekong River, visiting rural villages, historic pagodas, local markets and a Buddhist monastery, where we'll be treated to a special blessing by monks. Our inner adventurer spirit will be indulged in Seam Reap, exploring grand temples of Angkor Archeological Park—and we'll be treated to an overnight sojourn on board an elegantly appointed ship in Ha Long Bay. Get Trip Details.

Exhibitions

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Maine Eats: The Food Revolution Starts Here
March 2, 2018 through February 9, 2019
MHS Gallery

Food is a universal building block of life—if we don't eat, we will die. But food has a power that goes far beyond biology. The food we eat shapes our lives and our memories. Sourcing food, preparing food, and eating food are all part of the heartbeat of Maine's culture and economy. Maine Eats: The Food Revolution Starts Here explores Maine's relationship with food and innovative food solutions to challenges through diverse stories from around the state. Read More

 

exhibit graphic

Maine Brews
October 5, 2018 through January 26, 2019
Earle G. Shettleworth, Jr. Lecture Hall

Maine is experiencing a beer renaissance. Formed in 1986, the Maine Brewers Guild today counts over 120 independent craft breweries who produce a wide range of beers in different styles marketed locally, regionally and internationally. But Maine’s beer scene did not always thrive. Prohibition in Maine lasted much longer than in the rest of the nation. Beer was still made in Maine in limited quantities, but not easily accessed. Today, Maine is making up for the long dry spell with a thriving beer industry. This exhibit explores the history of Maine’s beer and the booming industry in our state today.

 

Maine Memory Network homepage

Maine Memory Network - Over 300 Online Exhibitions

Offers online access to numerous Web–based exhibits and a constantly growing collection of nearly 45,000 historical documents, images, and objects contributed by as many as 270 organizations around Maine. New exhibits added regularly. Go to www.mainememory.net.

 

Regional Genealogy Programs, Events, and Conferences

Find out about regional conferences and other family history instruction and workshops.