WDS Reopens with Modified Schedule, Big Plans

Huzzah! The Webb-Deane-Stevens (WDS) Museum held a successful “soft” reopening on Wednesday, June 24, 2020 after an extended closure due to COVID-19. WDS staff are diligently following state guidelines for reopening. New protocols include masks being required of all visitors and staff. Hand sanitizer and gloves are available for visitors, and new traffic-flow procedures have been established.

Initially, WDS is offering tours on a part-time, limited basis. Tours in groups of no more than four people are offered at 10 a.m., noon, and 2 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday, and on Sundays at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Advance reservations may be made by calling Acting Co-Director Cynthia Riccio at 860-529-0612, ext. 12, or emailing her at [email protected].

Riccio notes “The Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum is a national treasure, so we are thrilled to open back up for the season.” Noting that the historic site is a popular summertime destination, Riccio explains, “When people hear for the first time that General George Washington and French General Rochambeau met here in the Joseph Webb House and planned the march that ultimately led to the end of the Revolutionary War, they are proud, and often astonished, that Connecticut served as a foundry for our fledgling democracy; they are also instant fans.”

Guided tours include the Webb House, the Silas Deane House, built for America’s first diplomat to France, and the Isaac Stevens House, which demonstrates Connecticut life in the 18th and 19th centuries.

WDS is nearing completion of its new, $6.5-million Education and Visitor Center that will bring exciting changes to Wethersfield, the largest historic district in the state. When the new Education and Visitor Center opens later this year, WDS will be able to offer year-round, hands-on programming for the public, school groups, and private-tour groups. The center will also add much-needed exhibition and public-meeting spaces, facilities for research, and handicapped access in the Webb House. The expansion will also boost the museum’s already considerable economic impact on the surrounding community, benefitting area businesses and bolstering Wethersfield’s heritage tourism. For more information visit www.webb-deane-stevens.org or call Riccio at(860) 529-0612, ext. 12.