Middletown Springs, Vermont

The Historical Society

The Middletown Springs Historical Society collects, preserves and exhibits community history at its museum in the historic Adams House on the Green in Middletown Springs and at the Mineral Springs Park nearby on Burdock Avenue

Visit Us

The Adams House is located at 10 Park Avenue. The museum is open on Sundays, 2-4 p.m., from Memorial Day through October, and by appointment. The Historical Society presents several public events each year for educational and fundraising purposes. It also offers seasonal and ongoing exhibits. The Mineral Springs Park, located at 11 Burdock Avenue, is open to the public during daylight hours year-round.

MSHS’s exhibit, Fancy Goods: Hats and Fashion Accessories: 1850-1950, has been redesigned and is now showing at the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier.

Fancy Goods Exhibit Opens at Vermont History Museum in Montpelier

Middletown Springs Historical Society’s exhibit, Fancy Goods: Hats and Fashion Accessories:1850-1950, is now showing at the Vermont History Museum in Montpelier, which reopened in October. A free public opening reception for the exhibit is scheduled on Saturday, December 16, 1:00 p.m.-3:00 p.m. MSHS members receive free admission to the museum, compliments of the Vermont Historical Society, through mid-February when the exhibit closes.

Fancy Goods was first exhibited at the Middletown Springs Historical Society Museum in 2022. “The exhibit looks entirely different in the Local History Gallery at the Vermont History Museum,” says exhibit curator and MSHS Collections Manager Mary Lou Willits. “The wall space and exhibit furniture in the large gallery provided opportunities for grouping the fashion items in new ways with added interpretation.”  She explains that the exhibit is arranged by fashion themes rather than strictly chronological order: panel titles for groups of objects include Summer Whites, Stylish Black, Feathers, and Beading. Some of the arrangements fell naturally into certain decades– the 1880s, 1900s and 1920s.

For a full interview about the exhibit with Mary Lou and Vermont Historical Society PR & Guest Services Coordinator Andrew Liptak, see Events and News

Historical Society Sells Lunch at Middletown Springs Holiday Craft Fair December 3

The 29th Annual Middletown Springs Holiday Craft Fair will be held at the Middletown Springs Elementary School on Sunday, December 3, 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Schedule extra time to sit down with neighbors and friends to enjoy warming soups and stews, drinks and sweets. All proceeds from the kitchen will benefit the Middletown Springs Historical Society. Craft fair organizers have brought together vendors of fine arts, crafts and culinary delights. Many of the vendors are from Middletown Springs.

Website Volunteer Needed

If you can’t get enough of social media, we have a great volunteer opportunity! Our new WordPress website will benefit from additional content and updates to keep it fresh and worthy of frequent visits. 

About the Website Project

Paisley shawls were a fashionable item of women’s clothing in the 1800s. Many were made of intricately woven and delicate wool, as well as examples being printed onto silks, wools, and cotton. Pictured here is a printed wool paisley shawl dating to the 1850s. It belonged to the Gray Family and was donated by the Grover/Blakely Families.

Now known as the Paisley pattern, the teardrop motif originated in Persia and India. Imitations of Kashmir originals were produced in Paisley, Scotland, for a 70 year period beginning around 1800, giving a new name to the pattern. The popularity of shawls declined in the 1870s, due largely to a change in women’s fashion. The large circular crinoline skirts upon which shawls draped gave way to slimmer skirts with bustles. A shawl would cover a decorative bustle, which was meant to be seen.