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South County Museum

PO Box 709
Narragansett, RI 02882
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  • Description - South County Museum

    Founded in 1933 in North Kingstown, South County Museum was originally housed in a barn in Wickford. A year later it moved to the Knight Farm on Scrabbletown Road in North Kingstown. It later moved to Route 2 in North Kingstown before finding its present home on Canonchet Farm in 1984; this final move was forced by the expansion of Route 4. The main exhibit hall, the Metz Building, was built in 1987 and the Carpentry Shop, Blacksmith Forge, and Carriage Barn somewhat later, along with the small building between the Forge and the Barn, which has played a number of roles, including Fiber Arts Center and, as now, One-Room Schoolhouse.The museum is located within Canonchet Farm, a large public park owned by the town of Narragansett. The museum is a separate nonprofit organization funded through donations, grants and admissions. Today the collections contain more than 20,000 items. They date from 1695 to 1950, though most of them are from the Victorian era, c. 1840-1910.The museum has become a popular attraction and its exhibits have helped to keep alive Rhode Island's rural, village, and maritime heritage, providing a fascinating glimpse of the hand-craft technology and everyday life of the people of the past two centuries. Owned by the town of Narragansett, 174-acre Canonchet Farm has historical significance as the former home of the 12th governor of Rhode Island, Col. William Sprague, and his wife Kate Chase, daughter of Salmon P. Chase, Abraham Lincoln's Secretary of the Treasury.

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