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The Museum

Since 1925, we’ve been housed in the 1823 Abigail Hooper Trask House. What began as the Manchester Historical Society (1886) became, in 2014, the Manchester Historical Museum, where you may find a collection of objects, paintings, and archives pertaining to Manchester and its past.


As an organization, our mission is to encourage an interest in the history of Manchester-by-the-Sea, to maintain a museum house with archives and collections, and to advocate for and interpret the town’s past.


Welcome to the Bicentennial Year of the Trask House!

Stay tuned with our upcoming schedule of events as we celebrate the two hundredth anniversary of the Abigail Hooper Trask House and reinterpret our museum to better serve as Manchester-by-the-Sea's history center!

Section of a letter by Abigail Hooper to her half-brother Samuel Smith, August 2, 1823, on the state of her new house: "I had rather my house should never be painted, but the out side is now painted. A. Burges has done it and is to do the rooms. All things have gone as well as I could expect since the framing. I am sorry I had not taken E's advice and taken it down and had it framed over and have no doubt but I should if I had been a man and been on it and seen it, but it is too late now to repent."


Director & Curator: Robert Booth | - 781-780-1890

Administrative & General Info: Martha Chapman | - 978-526-7230

Archivist: Matthew Swindell | - 978-526-7230

Volunteers: John Huss, Lynda Griffiths, Pam Nelson


Executive Committee

President: Matthew Genta
Vice President: Axel Magnuson
Secretary: Sue Thompson
Treasurer: Rus Brown

Board Members

Rebecca Campbell
Martha Chapman
Philio Wigglesworth Cushing
Mike Garvey
Constance Leahy
David Lumsden
Mary Minott
John Round
Amy Snodgrass

Remarkable History of the Museum’s Abigail Hooper Trask House (1823)

This house was the only one in Massachusetts built for a self-made unmarried woman! Abigail Hooper (born 1788) was 35 at the time, and the proprietor of the town’s leading store. In 1829, after marriage to a shipmaster, she doubled the size of the house and added a columned side porch and a handsome frontispiece (since removed). She resided here for the rest of her very long life, which ended in 1885 in her 97th year.

80.24.7 (1)a- Trask House - photo of the Trask House in 1880's front.jpg
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