The Museum

The Lyme History Museum, operated by the Lyme Historians, Inc.  is located in the Churchill-Melvin House at 15 Main Street across from the Lyme Common and between the Lyme Country Store and the cemetery.  See map below

Museum EntranceEntrance Location:
East side of the Churchill-Melvin House

Hours: Wednesdays (May-Sep) 4 pm to 6 pm, (Oct-November) 10 am to 1 pm, and Saturdays (year-round) 10 am to 1 pm.   We can always open other times by appointment.  If you have a question or need information please email or call us.

Email:        Phone: 603-795-2508

The Itinerant Museum – A Short History of Our Museum

All ready to exhibit and nowhere to go.  For years, the Historians have curated a remarkable (and still expanding) “movable feast” of Lyme-abilia.  Before they secured a home on the first floor of the Lyme Center Academy building in 2002, the collection shuffled all over town. Now we have our own building in the Churchill-Melvin House on Main Street across from the Lyme Common with five exhibit rooms including our lovely new entrance.  The Historians have worked hard to create a beautiful museum space that allows us to stage themed exhibits, often including objects lent by members for our new home!  How wonderful to have such generous friends who want to share their Lyme artifacts with all us.

Special features:

First Saturdays — Come and hear from your neighbors who grew up here: What was it like in Lyme in the “old days?” Join Don and Julia Elder  this  Saturday, March  2, 11:00-noonish. Come listen, ask questions, laugh and enjoy!  Tea, coffee and treats available.  Bring your knitting!

Handcrafts: While many were outdoors skiing, sledding, skating and enjoying the snow, others spent most of the winter months producing items for the household or for enjoyment, such as quilts; sewn, knitted and crocheted clothing & blankets; cheerful embroidery; rugs both hooked and braided... Lyme has a rich history of folks (OK, mostly women) who made things out of love. Quilting We have a few such in our Collection, but would love to see more!  What have you got to share (loan or donate)?  Or, come share your talent and passion — others would love to learn from you.    ALL handcrafters welcome!  Bring your work: in-progress, or finished.  We’ll be gathering from about 10:30-12:30 if you can join us this Saturday, or any Saturday this winter, come!


Spotlight on the Collection

February exhibits: “Bygone Winters” in Lyme—outdoor and indoor activities

Items and photos from our Collection that illustrate , fashions, and so on will be on Enrty exhibitdisplay.    Those infamous skates, ski/sleds, one of the first ever outdoor sleeping bags, old clap-on skates, as well as a NINE-FOOT traverse sled!  Very cool – come see for yourself!

Ice skates



If you have northern New England/Lyme vintage winter-related items you could lend, please let us know.



On- Going  Exhibits:

Stop in for a cup of tea and enjoy our vintage holiday decor.   Have fun trying out the early 20th c. Kitchen Gadgets and guess what they’re for.  Kids with adults are welcome to try them, too.  See the collections of some Lymies before they’re put away to make room for new exhibits in the winter.

Kitchen Gadgets

Kitchen Gadgetsd ModelBefore the Cuisinart, discover the invention s designed to ease the work of food preparation . Hands-on exhibit—turn the cranks to help you figure out each item ‘s use! Unknown gadget




Churchill-Melvin Parlor

Our new home is named for two early families of the house, Judge David Churchill and George Melvin.  Both men owned the Lyme Country Store at different times, making their home very convenient to their business.  The newly refurbished parlorparlor now displays examples of period furniture along with a few of the 1850 technologies.

Estey Organ

Found in the parlor is the Estey Organ which was played in the Lyme home of Clyde Grant and has recently been beautifully restored!




Mayo Collection

– excerpted from issues of The Lyme Historian, Adair Mulligan, editor

We are now displaying an extensive collection of native American artifacts that originated in Lyme.  Bartlett Mayo, who owned land near Post Pond and the gathering place known as Ordanakis, discovered points, pestles, scrapers, and other tools while working his land.

Mayo left his fascinating collection of 139 artifacts to Dartmouth College, which conveyed them to the Montshire Museum of Science.  The Montshire has generously agreed to convey them permanently to the Lyme Historians for display and curation.

Our location: