People & Places Gallery
Objects in this gallery reveal how people lived, loved, and celebrated. The Abenaki named this place Webhannet, meaning “at the clear stream,” a reference to the nearby river called by that name today. English settlers called it Wells, named after the city in the west of England. Over the course of 300 years, the landscape was transformed by mills, farms, ships, and later taverns, grand hotels, and commercial enterprises.
At the turn of the last century, Mr. and Mrs. Joshua Wheelwright assumed the appearance of American Gothic long before artist Grant Wood painted his iconic image. Joshua was a descendant of Reverend John Wheelwright, first pastor of the settlers.