Gore Place

Gore Place As of March 13, 2020, all tours and public programs are postponed. There will be no daily tours until further notice. Please visit www.goreplace.org for updates.
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Welcome to the Gore Place page. Gore Place is the Federal period estate of Rebecca and Christopher Gore. The estate includes the beautiful 1806 Mansion, a 1793 Carriage House and a farm with period breeds of sheep and chickens. Gore Place is the site of the popular annual Sheepshearing Festival, hosts concerts, holiday teas and family events. The grounds are open to the public year-round, and tours are available Monday through Saturday and selected Friday evenings.

05/29/2020
10 Minute Virtual Moonlight Tour

Learn about romance in the Austen era.

Designed to be entertaining for the whole family, Virtual Moonlight Tours are video clips, lasting about 10 minutes. Each Virtual Moonlight Tour focuses on one aspect of life at Gore Place in the early 1800s.

Did you enjoy the tour? Consider making a donation here: https://goreplace.org/support/donate

Join us this evening for our 10 Minute Virtual Moonlight Tour about romance in the Austen era. The video premieres at 7:...
05/29/2020

Join us this evening for our 10 Minute Virtual Moonlight Tour about romance in the Austen era. The video premieres at 7:30pm.

The Gores’ life story ends with the death of Rebecca in 1834. The article 8 Days in May told the story of the founding o...
05/28/2020

The Gores’ life story ends with the death of Rebecca in 1834. The article 8 Days in May told the story of the founding of the Gore Place Society in 1935. We thought you might like to know who owned the estate in the intervening 100 years.

https://goreplace.org/about/news/after-the-gores

Summer Means Strawberries! What’s more evocative of summer than fresh strawberries? In New England, strawberries are the...
05/27/2020

Summer Means Strawberries!

What’s more evocative of summer than fresh strawberries? In New England, strawberries are the first summer fruit. Certainly, in Gore’s cultivated fields were strawberries!

According to Strawberry: A Brief History by David Trinklein, the strawberry isn’t actually a fruit. It is, “the enlarged receptacle of the flower.”

A New World strawberry called Fragaria Virginiana was introduced to France in 1624. A wild species native to Chili called Fragaria Chiloensis was brought to Europe in 1712. It bears berries the size of walnuts. Both species were widely grown (presumably side-by-side) in European gardens. Crossbreeding of these varieties and others eventually led to the standard variety we see today called Fragaria x Ananassa. Strawberries now grow all over the world in temperate climates and are among the first edible plants to bloom in spring.

In the New World, cooks have used strawberries in sweet treats for hundreds of years. At George Washington’s Mount Vernon, a cookbook recipe calls for “1 cup Strawberry...” in a “Brandy-jam loaf cake”

Rebecca Gore often served strawberries to her admiring guests. In a letter to Jeremiah Mason dated July 4, 1817, Gore writes that, after having made several stops along the way, former President James Monroe, “stopped at my house, ate a strawberry, bowed and shook hands cordially, returned to Boston to meet the Town oration…” Strawberries, it seems, were a treat fit for a president!

Not only a delicacy, these red ‘flowers’ provide a much needed source of vitamin C, This medicinal boost which helps prevent diseases such as scurvy. What do you like to pair with your strawberries?

Image 1: "Strawberry Thief, 1883, William Morris (1834-1896) V&A Museum no. T.586-1919

Image 2: Strawberry print that is on Gore Place notecards and tea towels

Image 3: Clock face with strawberries in Gore Place

05/24/2020

Friendly reminder that pets are not allowed on our grounds as we are a working farm.

Help Us Reach Our $25,000 Challenge!Donate to the Annual Fund at Gore Place and help us reach the Gore Place $25,000 Cha...
05/22/2020

Help Us Reach Our $25,000 Challenge!

Donate to the Annual Fund at Gore Place and help us reach the Gore Place $25,000 Challenge! All gifts made between now and June 30, 2020 to the Gore Place Annual Fund will be matched up to $25,000, thanks to a generous anonymous donor. Your gift today of any amount will help us reach that goal and earn the $25,000 match! Annual Fund donations provide critical, unrestricted funds for the day-to-day work of operating our museum and farm. Thank you to all our donors for your support and for making every dollar count!

https://goreplace.org/support/donate

05/21/2020
Know Before You Go Video

In celebration of #GlobalAccessibilityAwarenessDay, Gore Place is proud to announce the release of its new Know Before You Go video which was created with the support of an Innovation Fund grant from the Mass Cultural Council’s Universal Participation Initiative. This four-and-a-half minute video provides an overview of Gore Place’s terrain, accessibility features, programs and more, so that new and returning visitors can get to know Gore Place before they visit. The video features closed captioning and audio description for optimal use by all visitors. Enjoy the video linked here: https://goreplace.org/visit/accessibility/know-before-you-go-video

Know Before You Go Video about Gore Place

The Battle of The BricksOur recent article about the fight to save Gore Place ( see: “Eight Days in May,” "The Agrarian"...
05/20/2020

The Battle of The Bricks

Our recent article about the fight to save Gore Place ( see: “Eight Days in May,” "The Agrarian", spring 2020: https://goreplace.org/about/news/spring-2020-newsletter) brought an intriguing response from former board member and long-time friend of Gore Place Barbara (Bobby) Moore. Bobby lives in the former home of Helen Patterson who played a key role in the preservation of the estate as the first Executive Director of Gore Place.

Our story put Bobby in mind of another fight for preservation in which Mrs. Patterson took part.
“Have you ever heard of the Battle of the Bricks?” asked Bobby. “No? Well, Google it.”

We did just that, and up popped an online article from "Boston Magazine" dated April 7, 2016.

The article entitled: When Beacon Hill’s Sidewalks Were Almost Paved was written by contributor Madeline Bilis and it tells the story of how, in April 1947, a handful of protesters stopped Mayor Curley’s men from pulling up the brick sidewalks of Beacon Hill. Among the protesters was our own Mrs. Patterson! It was a big story—big enough to make The New York Times.

In the article, Ms. Bilis draws from Lively Days: some memoirs of Margaret Homer Shurcliff. Shurcliff was the youngest daughter of Dr. Arthur and Elizabeth Nichols whose family residence at No. 55 Mount Vernon Street is now the Nichols House Museum.

In her memoirs, Ms. Shurcliff describes the events leading up to the protest. She tells of how the residents of Beacon Hill had watched for several days as bulldozers tore up the street in preparation for paving.

When a crew arrived and began tearing up the iconic brick sidewalks, some of those residents sprung into action. They occupied the sidewalks, preventing the men from continuing their work. With the destruction temporarily stopped, the protesters headed for City Hall armed with letters and petitions demanding the sidewalks be saved.

At City Hall, Shurcliff tells us, the protesters met with the Street Superintendent, Mayor Curley and other city officials and that a lively discussion ensued. Mayor Curley argued that the brick sidewalks were a hazard and caused accidents, but the protesters were able to prove that no such accidents had occurred.

According to Shurcliff, the Street Superintendent then argued that the bricks were “old and crumbly” and that there were no more brickyards to lay new bricks to which Mrs. Patterson replied that she would lay her own bricks!

In the end, the Mayor relented. “Let them have their bricks,” he was quoted as saying. “You can’t sweep back the ocean with a broom.”

Thank you, Bobby Moore, for bringing our attention to this wonderful piece of local history, another battle in which Mrs. Patterson and her fellow preservationists prevailed—the Battle of the Bricks!

You can read Madeline Bilis’s article online here. "Lively Days: some memoirs of Margaret Homer Shurcliff" is available through your favorite bookseller or library. https://www.bostonmagazine.com/news/2016/04/07/beacon-hill-battle-of-bricks/

05/19/2020

May 19, 2020 | Sheepshearing Festival at Gore Place Cancelled

Dear members and friends of Gore Place,

Everyone at Gore Place is very sorry to share the news that, after many discussions, we have decided not to hold the Sheepshearing Festival this summer or fall. We feel that there is too much uncertainty about public health in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic to be able to successfully and safely hold the Festival in 2020. The loss of the Festival creates significant financial challenges, but the well-being of all involved is our highest priority.

The Sheepshearing Festival is our largest fundraising event of the year, raising critical operating funds that keep our organization running and thriving. Without a Festival in 2020, we face financial peril. While we are offering full refunds to our advance ticket holders and vendors, we hope that many of you will support us through tax-deductible donations.

We were grateful to be able to host a virtual Sheepshearing Festival on April 25. You can view a captioned recording of this virtual event on our website soon.

The Sheepshearing Festival has taken place on the last Saturday in April every year since 1987. We thank our loyal community of visitors, friends, members, staff, volunteers, Board of Governors, and the many artisans, historical reenactors, vendors, performers and sponsors who make the Sheepshearing Festival such a success. We look forward to being back with you next year on Saturday, April 24, 2021.

Please read on for more information about refunds for ticket holders and vendors.

Sincerely,
Susan Robertson
Executive Director

Information on refunds for advance ticket holders

Customers who purchased advance tickets for the 2020 Sheepshearing Festival have three options:

Customers can get a full refund for the amount of their advance ticket purchase by contacting us here: [email protected]

Customers can turn their advance tickets into a tax-deductible donation by contacting us here: [email protected]

(Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.)

Customers can turn their 2020 Festival tickets into 2021 Festival tickets by contacting us here: [email protected]

Customers that wish to have a refund or to use their tickets next year must inform Gore Place by June 15, 2020. After this date, unclaimed advance tickets will be turned into a donation and we will send those customers a donation receipt.

Information for Gore Place Members

Gore Place members who had memberships with expiration dates of April 26, 2020 or later will be able to attend the 2021 Sheepshearing Festival for free at the level of their current membership. Members who renew their memberships now will receive an additional three months added automatically to their membership. Members can email questions to Kali Noble at [email protected].

Information for Festival Vendors

Festival vendors who have paid in advance for their booth space have three options:

Vendors can get a full refund for their booth space payment by contacting us here: [email protected]

Vendors can turn their booth space payment into a tax-deductible donation by contacting us here: [email protected]

(Donations are tax-deductible to the extent allowable by law.)

Vendors can apply their 2020 Festival booth space payment to a booth space at the 2021 Festival by contacting us here: [email protected]

Vendors who wish to have a refund or to use their booth payment at the 2021 Festival must inform Gore Place by June 15, 2020. After this date, 2020 booth payments will be turned into a donation and we will send those vendors a donation receipt.

Information for Festival Sponsors

We are reviewing Festival sponsorships on a case-by-case basis, as each sponsorship is unique. Festival Sponsors may contact Susan Robertson at [email protected] for more information.

Today we celebrate our 85th anniversary! Gore Place Society was incorporated as a nonprofit organization on May 17, 1935...
05/17/2020

Today we celebrate our 85th anniversary! Gore Place Society was incorporated as a nonprofit organization on May 17, 1935, 85 years ago today. We've come a long way since those early days. Thanks for being part of our story.

Today is #PlantSomethingDay. What will you plant today? Whether you plant a tree, flowers or vegetables in your garden, ...
05/15/2020

Today is #PlantSomethingDay. What will you plant today? Whether you plant a tree, flowers or vegetables in your garden, you’ll be making the world that much greener! According to the Farmers’ Almanac, this week will be “Fine for vine crops. Set strawberry plants. Good days for transplanting. Favorable time for planting late root crops.”

Christopher Gore enjoyed touring his “Farm at Waltham” where he grew grains, grasses, vegetables and fruit. He had a heated greenhouse in which he grew oranges, and he made wine from the grapes he grew in his grapery.

Farmer Scott grew over 4,000 plant seedlings in the hoop house this year. Over the past few weeks, we’ve been selling tomato seedlings, peppers, eggplants and basil—all organically grown on our farm. If you bought plants at Farmer Scott’s Tomato Seedling Sale, send us a picture of your tomatoes when they come in!

85 Years Ago Today - Wednesday, May 15, 1935William Sumner Appleton and Philip Dana Orcutt made their way to the offices...
05/15/2020

85 Years Ago Today - Wednesday, May 15, 1935

William Sumner Appleton and Philip Dana Orcutt made their way to the offices of the Waltham Savings Bank where, on behalf of the freshly-minted Gore Place Society, they signed the purchase agreement. With the stroke of a pen, the country home of Christopher and Rebecca Gore was saved for posterity. In eight short days, a handful of heroes had raised a small fortune and saved a national treasure.

85 years ago today — Tuesday, May 14:The clouds linger. Appleton and Orcutt inform the bank they are ready to make an in...
05/14/2020

85 years ago today — Tuesday, May 14:

The clouds linger. Appleton and Orcutt inform the bank they are ready to make an initial payment. They schedule a meeting for the following day.

85 years ago today-Monday, May 13:The day breaks cloudy and showers threaten. An emergency meeting of the combined board...
05/13/2020

85 years ago today-Monday, May 13:

The day breaks cloudy and showers threaten. An emergency meeting of the combined boards of SPNEA, the Trustees of Public Reservations and the Massachusetts Society of Architects convenes at the Otis House. They are there to assess the results of the Telephone Marathon and to decide whether or not the Gore Place campaign has
a future.

Bradford Williams reports $5,000 in pledges. Appleton commits SPNEA to $5,000 despite having received only $1,500 in pledges.

After 3 hours of discussion, the collective boards agree to take on the mortgage of $60,000, taking title with a down payment of $15,000. Gore Place Society is born.

Women's fashion changed a lot during Rebecca's lifetime. As a wealthy woman of society, she would have kept with the tre...
05/12/2020
Rebecca gore's regency closet

Women's fashion changed a lot during Rebecca's lifetime. As a wealthy woman of society, she would have kept with the trends like evolution of long, stiff stomachers and wide panniers to high empire waists and more comfortable dresses.
(Kind of like business casual to work-from-home casual right now)

Take a look at our Pinterest board of Regency-era fashion ads and clothing in collections.

Discover goreplace's collection, Rebecca gore's regency closet

On This Day 85 Years Ago - Saturday, May 11, 1935 - Young, Boston architect Philip Dana Orcutt hears of the crisis at Go...
05/11/2020
Spring 2020 Newsletter

On This Day 85 Years Ago - Saturday, May 11, 1935 - Young, Boston architect Philip Dana Orcutt hears of the crisis at Gore Place. The bank has received an offer. To stop the sale, a $1,500 deposit must be raised in a few days. Orcutt calls William Sumner Appleton of the Society for the Preservation of New England Antiquities (now Historic New England). Orcutt, Appleton, Bradford Williams and Helen Patterson descend upon the bank where a “short and fierce argument” with the bankers ensues. Orcutt writes a check for $1000 towards the $1500 deposit, despite having only $500 in his account, confident they can raise the balance by Monday.

Read the full story in the Spring 2020 Agrarian.

Spring 2020 Issue 8 of The Agrarian

85 Years ago today - Thursday, May 9, 1935 was day two in the race to save Gore Place. On that day, Trustees field secre...
05/09/2020

85 Years ago today - Thursday, May 9, 1935 was day two in the race to save Gore Place. On that day, Trustees field secretary Bradford Williams convinced representatives of the Waltham Savings Bank to delay the sale of Gore Place for five days. He had five days to raise a $15,000 down payment on the $75,000 it would take to save the estate. He would need a lot of help.

85 years ago today, Bradford Williams, field secretary of the Trustees of Public Reservations, visited Gore Place. He wa...
05/08/2020

85 years ago today, Bradford Williams, field secretary of the Trustees of Public Reservations, visited Gore Place. He was there to meet with representatives of the Waltham Savings Bank. Williams hoped to strike a deal with the bank; a deal that would allow the Colonial Dames to buy the estate. He was shocked to learn that the bank had already accepted an offer from a group of developers. It looked as though Gore Place would fall to the wrecking ball!

To read the full story, see our Spring 2020 Agrarian. https://goreplace.org/about/news/spring-2020-newsletter

Ever wonder what the Carriage House looks like when set up and decorated for a wedding? We've added a 360 video of the s...
05/07/2020
Weddings

Ever wonder what the Carriage House looks like when set up and decorated for a wedding? We've added a 360 video of the space before a wedding to our website. Check it out!

While we can't hold events at the moment, we are booking 2021 and 2022 events.

Host your wedding at Gore Place

We're participating in the #MuseumSurvivalKit Project!Museums around the world are sharing tips to add to a "survival ki...
05/06/2020

We're participating in the #MuseumSurvivalKit Project!

Museums around the world are sharing tips to add to a "survival kit" based on collection items or other relevant information.

Robert Roberts's book "A House Servant's Directory" is full of tips and tricks. But one is very handy for a survival kit: how to preserve milk for sea travel.

"To preserve milk for tea, to keep six months:

Take as many bottles as wish to fill, wash and dry them very clean, then fill them right from the cows' teats; after you have them all full, take some new corks which you have previously soaked in water, drive them as tight as possible, have the bottles so full that there may be no vacancy between the cork and milk, then tie them with pack-thread or wire, as you would porter; when you pack them by, put the bottles with their neck down, and bottom upwards.

N.B. When you first cork them, put some straw on the bottom of a boiler, then place your bottles on their bottoms on it, and fill up with cold water, make a fire, and when it begins to boil, take the fire from under the boiler, and let it cool down. When cool, take them out, and pack as above, in straw or saw dust. I have frequently kept milk for six months, and it was a fresh as when first bottled. This is excellent for carrying to sea."

Address

52 Gore St
Waltham, MA
02453

70 or 70A bus from Waltham or Central Square, Cambridge.

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