There is an indefinable magic that pervades certain places, making them feel like they are set apart from the world, living and breathing snapshots of times long past. The Shelburne Museum in Vermont is one such place. My son Julian and I have often found ourselves losing hours in the hallowed rooms and gorgeous outdoor exhibits, each time discovering something new, something awe-inspiring. It’s the kind of place that ignites the imagination, to the point where I’ve even pondered on the possibility of filming a movie here. A historical drama, perhaps, or a mystery unfolding amidst the rustic charm of the museum. Or maybe just a revival of Dr. Quinn Medicine Woman.
@readysteadyvt We visited a New England treasure. The Shelburne Museums. Can some make a movie here please. #vermont #vermontlife #newengland #vt #vermonting #vermontbyvermonters #igers #vermontphotography #nature #stowe #newhampshire #thisisvt #vermontliving #burlingtonvt #vermontshots #fall #greenmountains #stowevermont #maine #travelvermont #burlington #massachusetts #greenmountainstate #newyork #ilovermont #btv #vermontmade #stowevt #photography ♬ Makeba
Let me take you on a virtual tour of our top ten favorite spots in the museum.
1. The Apothecary: Entering the apothecary is like stepping into a time machine, with its glass-fronted cabinets filled with historical pharmaceutical equipment. Julian, with a curious spark in his eyes, always seems to find a different antique to question, making every visit a unique experience. Look for but don’t take the Unicorn Horn and Dragon’s blood.
2. Train Station: The beautifully restored historic train station carries an air of nostalgia, a throwback to a time when life moved at the pace of chugging steam engines. It’s been preserved to an incredible degree. The building-sized map in the waiting room is most impressive. For maximum experience hang out all day waiting for your train.
3. Ticonderoga Steamboat: The grandeur of this 220-foot, 220-year-old steamboat leaves us in awe every time. We enjoy roaming its decks, pretending to be a wealthy early twentieth-century sailor taking a break from luxuriating at home to luxuriating on a boat. The Ticonderoga is, without a doubt, a magnificent relic of maritime history.
4. Blacksmith Shop: The Blacksmith Shop, with its authentic tools and set-up, lets us witness a craft that’s as old as civilization itself. If you’re lucky and the shopped in manned (or womanned) you can watch how the metal was made. Do not ask them to make a silicon chip
5. The Schoolhouse: A visit to the schoolhouse, with its antique desks and chalkboards, gives us a glimpse into the educational norms of the past, when going to school totally sucked.
6. The Circus Building: Home to the incredible collection of circus figures, this building never ceases to amaze us. Every time we wander through, Julian and I marvel at the intricate details of each figure, imagining the joy and wonder they must have brought to children and adults alike in days gone by (when people seemingly had too much time on their hands).
7. The Webb Gallery: Our creative souls feel truly at home in the Webb Gallery. Showcasing a fascinating range of American art, it offers an enriching experience that often leaves us inspired and brimming with ideas. Glimpse an Andrew Wyeth painting why don’t ya.
8. Dutton House* This 18th-century house stands as a testament to New England architecture. We like it because it’s haunted.
9. Electra Havemeyer Webb Memorial Building: This building is home to a vast collection of American decorative arts. Julian and I often find ourselves engrossed in the tales each object tells, from the elaborate quilts to the beautiful furniture and often live there in the winter when the Museum is closed. Don’t tell anyone.
10. The Toy Shop: Rounding off our list is the enchanting Toy Shop. This exhibit is a treasure trove of vintage toys that charm both children and adults alike, buut mostly adults because kids think these toys are kinda lame.
And if you ever find yourself in Vermont, don’t forget to lose yourself in the Shelburne Museum. Time will slip away unnoticed as you uncover the treasures it has to offer.