Blog: Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society Museum

by GSA Marty Wagner, Comfort Inn Concord Class of 2011

I spent a couple hours exploring the Lake Winnipesaukee Historical Society Museum in Weirs Beach. What a neat place! The Museum has an abundance of historical material focusing on the towns all around the lake, steamship travel, islands of the lake, summer camps on the lake (there were 100s at one time), and the development of travel and tourism in the area. I discovered something new every time I returned to a display case full of treasures or wandered into another room. In addition, there are maps galore and models of boats that traveled the lake including the M/S Mount Washington which was launched August 12, 1940. Christina, the museum curator, answered any questions I had, while also providing me with binders full of old historical postcards and information. The model display of the M/S Mount Washington, shown below, also included the chronological story of its creation.

I also learned a lot more about the NH Veterans Association Campus which is located right on the main boulevard of Weirs Beach. The association and land were developed as a place where Civil War veterans could visit and spend time following their service. The association serves the same purpose today for veterans. What a fascinating story, and it will be the topic discussed at the August 14 presentation being done at the museum. (They have weekly Wednesday presentations throughout the summer months.)

The hooked rug below was acquired by the museum in 2012, and is a magnificent 97” by 92” piece. It was started in 1944 by a woman named Angelina Amabile. When she died in 1960, the rug was only half finished and was passed on to her nephew Peter Rosanelli, Jr., and his wife Laurie Vail Rosanelli who finished it. The rug had a few different homes before coming to the Museum. It will be temporarily moved to the Belknap Mills in Laconia this fall for an exhibition, and then returned to the museum, hopefully into a new space for it.

This little gem of a museum is located just north of Weirs Beach on NH Route 3. It’s open Wednesday – Saturday, 10 am – 4 pm from mid-June through Columbus Day weekend.