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Coggeshall Farm Museum celebrates 50 years of history, preservation, and education

Posted 9/5/23

This fall Coggeshall Farm Museum will host its second annual Harvest Gala. This year’s Gala will take place at Blithewold Mansion in Bristol, RI on October 7 a nd will celebrate 50 years as a …

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Sponsored

Coggeshall Farm Museum celebrates 50 years of history, preservation, and education

Posted

This fall Coggeshall Farm Museum will host its second annual Harvest Gala. This year’s Gala will take place at Blithewold Mansion in Bristol, RI on October 7 and will celebrate 50 years as a living history museum. The event will feature a live and silent auction, entertainment, and a fall-themed menu. All proceeds from the event will help fund future programming and events for the museum and its community.

As the Farm makes plans for the future, including the addition of more animals, more historians, and more themed events, it is also appropriate to appreciate where it began. The original Farm property was purchased as part of the Colt estate by the State of Rhode Island in 1965 with the intention of taking down the farmhouse. Members of the Bristol Historical Society succeeded in petitioning the state to protect the 18th-century farmhouse with the goal of using it for public education programs. By 1973, the project had expanded, and the Bristol Historical Society helped Coggeshall Farm Museum incorporate into its own private, non-profit organization. Throughout the years, the Farm has gone through many highs and lows as any nonprofit does, but it has persisted and continues to inspire the new generations of living history enthusiasts through the support and love of the Bristol community.

In 2019, Coggeshall Farm Museum entered into a cooperative partnership with Old Sturbridge Village. This partnership was a natural extension of the working relationship the Farm has had with the Village over the years. The Village’s staff specializes in a variety of historical skill sets and the Farm benefits from their extensive experience, receiving guidance and training from experts in the field. The Village is also able to provide much-needed marketing, accounting, and human resources support.   

In recent years the Cheese House on the property was restored, the Tyska Barn was built to accommodate more animals, and the Lake Kitchen garden was reestablished. The Farm has added more to its weekend program offerings, with events such as Maple Sugaring, Drill Day, and a Mother’s Day Garden Party. It has also expanded its educational programming opportunities. In the first half of 2023, the Farm served close to 2,500 students through school field trips and home school days, marking a return to pre-pandemic numbers.

As it looks forward to the next 50 years, Coggeshall Farm Museum will continue to expand educational programs, host Halloween and Christmas-themed events, and be a resource to the community.

Tickets to the Harvest Gala are on sale now, $175 per person or $1,400 per table of 8. The deadline to RSVP is September 20th. Purchase tickets by calling (508) 347-0207 or by visiting www.coggeshallfarm.org/event/gala/.

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