Welcome to the East Haddam Historical Society & Museum, illuminating local history since 1962!
The East Haddam Historical Society illuminates and preserves the stories of the people and places that shape our community.
(Mission Statement adopted November 2020)
Museum is currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but we have recently decided to offer some items from our Museum Shop online, including a new puzzle that we have just published of the Old Moodus Center c.1938! Contact us via email or phone 860-873-3944 to arrange payment and pickup.
Enjoy the Saving Land, Saving History mini-documentaries online!
50 years of Local History
The East Haddam Historical Society, founded over 50 years ago, has been at this Town Street location for 11 years; it's just around the corner from Gillette Castle, right on the Route 82 corridor. The museum has a fine collection of local and Lower Connecticut River Valley historical objects, and prides itself on its kid-friendliness.
Among the highlights of the museum are a photographic display of the rise and fall of the Industrial Age in Moodus Village, Native American artifacts dating to 1300 B.C., a photographic exhibit of the building of the East Haddam swing bridge, and a collection of changing fashions with period costumes on display.
Museum is currently closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Please contact us via email or phone 860-873-3944 with any questions.
East Haddam Historical Society wins award from the Connecticut League of History Organizations
April 5, 2021
The Connecticut League of History Organizations has awarded the East Haddam Historical Society a 2021 Award of Merit for Saving Land, Saving History. The committee was impressed with this collaboration between two non-profit organizations, an excellent example of how resources can be maximized by organizations who can find a common vision and purpose. The committee also noted how the walks in the woods promoted by the films provided a safe activity for the East Haddam community during the pandemic.
Connecticut Humanities grant supports the Saving Land, Saving History project
On behalf of the East Haddam Historical Society and the East Haddam Land Trust, we extend our deepest appreciation to Connecticut Humanities for the generous support of our project, Saving Land Saving History. This collaborative project has united our two organizations and, in the process, has revealed to us a new model for maximizing finite organizational resources by identifying complimentary assets to achieve common goals. Our organizations adapted quickly to the pandemic by expanding our digital footprints and providing new content to our members and the public on our websites, social media platforms, and You Tube channels. The mini-documentaries produced with grant funding have received to date over 2800 views. The final two mini-documentaries will profile the East Haddam Land Trust and East Haddam Historical Society, and will be released in July. We plan to host a gala reception and exhibit at the Historical Society Museum once we re-open. We would be honored to have you attend.
None of this would have been possible without the support of Connecticut Humanities. Thank you for helping the East Haddam Historical Society and East Haddam Land Trust to preserve and interpret the history of our community through your support of Saving Land Saving History.
We look forward to building upon this success by undertaking future projects in partnership with Connecticut Humanities.
East Haddam Historical Society
East Haddam Land Trust
2021 Membership Drive
As a membership-driven organization, the East Haddam Historical Society relies upon your membership for income. The Society both wants and needs your continued support so we can continue to archive, research, and tell the stories of East Haddam’s past and present.
For your convenience, you can submit your membership online, or you may complete the downloadable membership form and mail it along with your check.
*** Please renew your membership ***
The Board of Trustees deeply appreciates the continued support of all our members!
2021-2023 Strategic Plan
Members of the board, the museum manager, and volunteers/members of the East Haddam Historical Society worked together to create a three-year strategic plan.
This strategic plan provides year-by-year action steps over the next three years to accomplish the goals set out by the Board of Trustees. Read more to learn about our plans.
Applications for the third annual EHHS Scholarship Award announced
The East Haddam Historical Society is happy to announce it will be funding the 3rd annual EHHS Scholarship Award. This is a $500.00 award given to a Hale Ray senior who will be attending an institution of higher learning in the next year. The applicant should show an interest in and understanding of the importance of history and/or service to the community of East Haddam. The East Haddam Historical Society illuminates and preserves the stories of the people and places that shape our community. The history of East Haddam, and the lower Connecticut Valley, has had a significant impact on our state and the region as well as the world. Supporting students who show an understanding of the importance of learning from history and how to apply those lessons makes our community stronger.
The application is available to students on the high school Naviance web page.
Ted Hilton's to Sunrise: A Personal Reflection/ Documentary - Ron Hamill
Moodus Mills - Bruce Sievers and Chris Conti
Expressions of East Haddam: Land, Water, and Architecture - George Fellner
Saving Land, Saving History
If you love to hike the open space preserves or just want to know more about the history and nature of your town then you won’t want to miss the beautiful and informative films in our documentary series Saving Land, Saving History. These videos highlight the fascinating ties between the preservation of land and local history and commemorates the East Haddam Land Trust's 40 years of land conservation.
Award-winning local producer/director Ken Simon draws on the knowledge of local historians and conservationists to enliven the history of three historical preserves, the history of the East Haddam Land Trust, and the history of the East Haddam Historical Society & Museum.
The East Haddam Historical Society will be presenting a multi-media exhibit on “Saving Land, Saving History” at the Museum that will be available when the museum re-opens to the public. The “Saving Land, Saving History” project is a collaboration between the East Haddam Historical Society and the East Haddam Land Trust, supported by generous grants from Connecticut Humanities and the Eightmile River Wild and Scenic Watershed Coordinating Committee.
We hope you enjoy the Saving Land, Saving History mini-documentaries!
East Haddam Land Trust
The East Haddam Land Trust was formed in 1979 as a non-profit all-volunteer organization with a mission to preserve the natural, historic, and scenic sites of East Haddam and neighboring towns and to raise public awareness of the value of land conservation. The trust manages about 700 acres, and maintains 10 miles of public hiking trails.
The Twine Capital of America
From the early 1800s into the early 1900s, the modest Moodus River powered 12 mills that produced cotton duck, sail and netting with innovative processes and in such quantity and quality that the village of Moodus was known as the "Twine Capital of America."
The Morning Bells of Moodus
In this bonus clip from the "Saving Land, Saving History" mini-docuseries, East Haddam Historical Society President Bruce Sievers shares what the last surviving Moodus mill owner Crary Brownell told him about how the workday started at the twelve 20th century cotton mills along the Moodus River.
2021 Upcoming Events
The health of our community is our primary concern. As part of the effort to stop the spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus, we have made the difficult decision to postpone programs until further notice. Contact us with any questions at email@example.com or 860-873-3944.
All events take place at the Museum unless otherwise stated. Events are open to the public and free to members and children under twelve, except as noted. Donations from non-members is $5 for regular events.
Upcoming events will be listed below, or open our Calendar of Events.
For additional information and more events, see our News & Events page.