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Housed in the 1823 Abigail Hooper Trask House, the Museum invites you to experience Manchester-by-the-Sea’s fascinating past through restored period rooms, paintings and sculptures by master artists, collections from the town's furniture era and maritime history, educational programs, speakers, and exhibits.  Museum tours available Tuesday – Thursday, 10 AM – 3 PM.

Original watercolor by Marion Hall

History. Art. Community.

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One of the more than 10,000 items in our Collection & Archives.


First Anna Coleman Ladd Artwork Added to Collection

We are delighted to share the good news that the Museum has added to its permanent collection its first artwork by Anna Coleman Ladd (1878 – 1939), the accomplished Manchester-by-the-Sea sculptor and humanitarian.

The small bas-relief bronze plaque depicts a woman with outstretched arms, thought to be a self-portrait of Ladd in her World War I American Red Cross uniform.

The bronze was created in 1918 in Ladd’s newly opened Paris Studio for Portrait Masks, where she established her humanitarian legacy. Working with the American Red Cross, she pioneered how to sculpt life-like facial prosthetics to help countless soldiers disfigured by severe battle wounds, facilitating their rehabilitation and easing their return to civilian life.

"The addition of Ladd's bronze fills a gap in the collection and represents a notable MBTS artist," said Rebecca Campbell, Chair of the Museum’s Curatorial Advisory Committee. “We want visitors to enjoy the diverse forms of expression and the creative talents of prominent artists who worked and lived in MBTS."

We would like to extend our thanks to Susana and Robert Thompson of MBTS for this wonderful gift.

We hope you will stop by and help us celebrate our newest addition to the collection.

Welcome to Our New Volunteers

Joining us are Em Cicala, who is a history major at American University, and Libby Mulry, who is doing her high school senior-year S.C.O.R.E. project at the Museum.  In the fall Libby will be studying history at Trinity College in Dublin.  Both Em and Libby will be helping Archivist Matthew Swindell with the Museum’s project of digitizing MBTS photos, documents, manuscripts, and records — with the ultimate goal of providing the public with online access to the Archives.


We thank high school senior Sam Reissfelder for his invaluable help with our Archives throughout the past year. 


Interested in volunteering? Contact us at

America’s First Millionaires: The China Traders of Essex County — In the third lecture of our 2024 Speaker Series, Ipswich writer Doug Stewart will discuss Manchester-by-the-Sea’s fascinating connections to the China Trade, highlighting local shipmasters, a spectacular shipwreck, and retired opium traders who built mansions here.


Date: Thursday, April 25

Time: 7 PM

Pre-registration requested

Information about future lectures available here 

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