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Missing Gables and the Secret Staircase: Joseph Everett Chandler and the Invention of The House of the Seven Gables

March 16, 2016 @ 6:00 pm

Seven Lectures at Seven Gables

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

6 p.m.

Visitor Center

Refreshments served. Parking available

$7 admission; members free of charge

The House of the Seven Gables

Salem, Mass.

Reservations: Please email groups@7gables.org, or call 978-744-0991, ext. 104


Before it was The House of the Seven Gables, the waterfront structure famously immortalized by Nathaniel Hawthorne in his novel of the same name was known as the Turner-Ingersoll mansion. And before 1908, that mansion was in sad decline.

On Wednesday, March 16, at 6 p.m., Dr. Timothy Orwig will share fascinating details about what is essentially the rescue and restoration of the iconic Derby Street mansion. Noted Colonial Revival architect, Joseph Everett Chandler, commissioned by Caroline Emmerton, devoted a portion of his career to restoring and enhancing The Gables — one of one of the oldest timber-framed mansions in America. Emmerton, an entrepreneurial philanthropist, founded The House of the Seven Gables Settlement Association and oversaw the operations that served the local immigrant population.

The year 2016 marks the 150th anniversary of Caroline Emmerton’s birth (1866–1942). To note the significance of the date, this year’s annual lecture series, Seven Lectures at Seven Gables, focuses on Emmerton’s life and legacy. Subsequent lectures will look at preservation, education, the Settlement House movement and the literary history of The Gables.

The Gables, a nonprofit museum that continues to maintain Settlement programs, is now undergoing additional restoration on two second-floor rooms. This restoration is of particular historic note as it is rare to find first-period rooms in a historic house museum in their original condition.

Dr. Timothy Orwig teaches courses in art and architectural history at Boston College and Northeastern University. He earned an M.A. in Historic Preservation Studies and a Ph.D. in American and New England Studies at Boston University. He also holds an M.A. in English Language and Literature from the University of Arkansas. Mr. Orwig is a consultant to state and local governments in historic preservation documentation and cultural resources management. He has published several articles in Historic New England magazine, and his recent books include “Cape Cod Canal” and “Remembering Boston.”

About The House of the Seven Gable Settlement Association

The mission of the House of the Seven Gables Settlement Association is to preserve our National Historic Landmark and leverage its power as an icon of American culture to engage diverse audiences and provide education opportunities for our local immigrant community. For more information visit www.7gables.org.


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March 16, 2016
6:00 pm


I-95 Southbound Exit 90
Salisbury, MA 01952 United States
(978) 465-6555


(978) 465-6555