Starting at the Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester County in Cambridge, the visitor will get a broad introduction to the “work and family” of Dorchester County. The Neild Museum focuses on the agricultural history of the county, going back to when the first settlers came ashore here. The Robbins Heritage Center explores the Native Americans of the area through artifacts. Canning, Timbering, Marine Trades and Hunting and Trapping are touched upon, placing them in the county’s timeline. The War of 1812 Exhibit features a British encampment with authentically reproduced equipment, clothing and fire arms.
Through the campus’ other historic buildings, one will become acquainted with the families and trades that were commonplace in old Dorchester. The Goldsborough Stable dates from 1790 and introduces the skills and trades that were found on larger farms- blacksmithing, wheelwrights, saddle makers and more. The Meredith House, circa 1760, presents some of the families through artifacts, portraits and documents giving a full interpretation of the people that formed the county. A substantial Civil War Exhibit- Dorchester Divided, examines this conflict within the borders of Dorchester County.
Next, the group will visit the Richardson Maritime Museum or the Ruark Boatworks to further explore Dorchester’s maritime influence. Docents will describe the artifacts and boat builders will explain the customs and practices of different sea men and water families in the region.
Continuing on the tour, downtown historic homes and sites will be viewed. A historic courthouse, office building, wharf area, cobbled street and many mid 19th century homes are located in this historic district.
Ending at the Harriet Tubman Museum, learn about this heroine’s family, history and accomplishments. There were several stages to Tubman’s work and they are all explored in this venue.
Possible Add Ons-
Spocott Windmill and site- Travel toward the Neck District and visit this important site to see the restored windmill, schoolhouse and miller’s cottage.
Stanley Institute- Built about 1865, this early African American school retains much of its original décor. It served as both a school and a church until another church was built.
For information on these and other tours, contact Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester, 410.228.7953, firstname.lastname@example.org or www.dorchesterhistory.org. Heritage Museums and Gardens of Dorchester is the home of the Dorchester County Historical Society.