FREETOWN HISTORICAL SOCIETY Preserving the History of Assonet and East Freetown
We are located on 11 lovely acres. Our collection is quite vast and covers many time periods throughout Freetown's history. Our exhibits range from Native Artifacts to Civil War and agriculture, fishing, and manufacturing tools. We have something for everyone to enjoy! Find out more about our main museum and buildings below, or better yet come visit them in person.
We are currently updating a barn on the property to house our growing agricultural collection. Come by and see our progress on this exciting new project.
Built in 1914 and donated by the Stillwater Charities Foundation, the main building was originally used for screening cranberries by the Bullock Cranberry Company and then as a warehouse by Stillwater Associates of East Freetown.
Rooms from several historic homes located on South Main Street were removed and reconstructed within the building; the keeping room from the Hathaway house, and the parlor from Captain Job Terry's house built in the 1830s. An area of the museum displays items typical of the early 1900s kitchen from the ice box and cast iron stove to the utensils and appliances.
The rooms on the upper level of the museum display bedrooms; an adult's room and a child's room which displays toys that were common to the period.
Other displays include the Civil War memorabilia, and a library contains genealogical material of the families in the area as well as vital statistics from other towns.
The Gazebo houses the 1915 bronze bell from the steeple of the Methodist church that was formerly on Middleboro Road in East Freetown.
A replica of an early version of a garage. In it you will find an assortment of agricultural tools as well as ice harvesting artifacts. It also houses horse drawn carriages, sleighs, and a meticulously restored omnibus.
Formerly located on the corner of Middleboro Road and Mason Road in East Freetown. It educated Freetown students from grade 1 to grade 8.
You will be able to hear the original bell from the school which first rang in 1894. It contains many of the original desks as well as blackboard. A short walk out back and you will also see a faithfully reproduced outhouse.
Mason's Corner School
A general store was often the bub of village life. Information from the store quickly flowed throughout the town. Ours is a replica of Sharrock's Store, originally located on County Road in East Freetown. The store was in business from 1918 to 1960. In addition to groceries and sundries, the local post office was located in the stores in its later years.
The propieter's wife and daughters operated a tea room in the store during the 1920s and 1930s.
Our early twentieth century chapel was relocated from Chace Road and is maintained in restored condition. The building's acoustics provide memorable sounds when the pump organ accompanies the congregation's voices.
The Advent Chapel
This building is a replica of the Wilson-Rezendes Sawmill. The original sawmill operated on water power provided by the Tisdale Dam from 1820 to 1939. It was located on the Assonet River at the corner of Elm and Mill Street. Original remnants of the Tisdale Dam water turbine are also on site.
Wilson-Rezendes Saw Mill
Our shop is a replica of the Freeman "Barney" Sellars blacksmith/wheel-wright shop which was located on Elm Street in the center of Assonet Village. The forge and ox sling came from the Demoranville Blacksmith Shop in East Freetown and is used to host our annual Hammer-in event.
Our beginner blacksmith classes have been so well received, that we are expanding with the new "Slim" Blacksmith Annex, for more info or to sign-up head over to the programs page.
Sellars-Demoranville Blacksmith Shop
This East Freetown Garage is a replica of the original garage and fire station located in the village of East Freetown. The garage was a gathering point for community members, and we hope to continue this tradition with our replica.
Our thanks to
The Leonard H. & Eleanor B. Chace
The East Freetown Garage
This lovely historic home was built in the 1850s by William and Margaret Dover Jenkins and is original to the property. It was home to an incredible and interesting family whose stories we are still discovering.
The Jenkins House has been fully restored and centers around a large open hearth and antique kitchen with Barstow Stove. This is where we offer hearth cooking classes.