Located in the center of Connecticut’s largest historic district, the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum provides the quintessential New England experience. Visitors are immersed in life of the mid-18th and early-19th centuries during informative and entertaining one-hour tours. We also host a number of annual events to entertain, educate and enlighten visitors.
First opened in 1919, the Museum is owned and operated by The National Society of The Colonial Dames of America in The State of Connecticut and is accredited by the American Association of Museums.
Tour four remarkable 18th-century houses
The 1752 Joseph Webb House is where George Washington and French General Rochambeau met in May 1781 to plan the campaign which led several months later to the final battle of the Revolutionary War and the defeat of the British in Yorktown, Virginia. The Webb House was later owned by photographer and antiquarian Wallace Nutting. Read more.
The Silas Deane House, circa 1770, was built for America’s Revolutionary War diplomat to France as both his residence and as a power base for his political aspirations. The Deane House features an excellent collection of mid-to-late 18th century furniture made in Connecticut. The kitchen and second floor chamber in the rear interpret the life of slaves in this period. Read more.
The Isaac Stevens House depicts the life of a middle class family in the 1820s and 30s, with many original family possessions and a fascinating period toy exhibit. The interiors have recently been reinterpreted with the installation of reproduction block-printed wallpapers, which had become affordable and were very popular in middle class households at the time. Read more.
Within easy walking distance is the Buttolph-Williams House. Owned by Connecticut Landmarks and managed by the Museum, it captures the spirit of Puritan life in New England in the 17th century and is the setting for the Newberry Award-Winning novel The Witch of Blackbird Pond (1958) by Elizabeth George Speare. Read more.
News & Events
October 8, 2015 – Historian Bill Hosley will share his insight on what was once one of the cultural cradles of American civilization—Connecticut’s central valley, which blazed trails in art, architecture, technology, industry, agriculture, governance, religion, and social reform—at the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, on Thursday, October 8, 2015, at 6:30 p.m. in the Webb Barn.
October 15, 2015 – Turns out a picture really is worth a thousand words, and art historian Rena Tobey maintains that a number of the most recognizable portraits created in 18th-century colonial America, speak volumes. Various works, Tobey says, could be considered downright subversive in the days leading to the Revolutionary War. On October 15, Tobey will visit the Webb-Deane-Stevens (WDS) Museum to demonstrate how paintings reflect the forming and shaping of the unique American identity.
Up Close and Creepy: Wethersfield Witch Trials, Ancient Burying Grounds and a 19th-Century Wake at Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum
October 24 and 25, 2015 – The Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum will offer an up-close and creepy examination of all things macabre during their annual Witches and Tombstones Tours on Saturday and Sunday, October 24 and 25, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Admission for the 90-minute tour is $13 per person. Space is limited and reservations are strongly advised. *Please note – Witches and Tombstones Tours include walking on uneven ground and the use of stairs.
Plymouth Pilgrim Priscilla Alden to Travel 400 Years For Colonial Thanksgiving Dinner at Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum
November 15, 2015 – When the Pilgrims sat down to Thanksgiving dinner in 1621, they must have been grateful indeed. Beyond the turkey, and probably some hefty lobsters, the venison that was served was undoubtedly a treat. Back in England, deer were property of the King, and a forbidden delicacy, though some Pilgrims may have eaten “humble pie” made from the cast-off deer innards known as “humbles.” Thankfully, there will be no humble pie at the Webb-Deane-Stevens (WDS) Museum’s 18th-Century Thanksgiving Dinner on Sunday, November 15. Yet, remarkably, Priscilla Alden—a prominent guest at the first Thanksgiving—will travel nearly four centuries to be there, in her finest dress. Alden will mingle with guests at the opening reception, at noon, and give an engaging presentation during the authentic, 18th century feast at 1 p.m.