Rare photos featured in “Old Houses of Old Dartmouth” lecture, Oct. 14

Bob Maker will present an illustrated lecture on the early architecture of Old Dartmouth (present-day Westport, Dartmouth, New Bedford, Fairhaven and Acushnet) at the New Bedford Whaling Museum on AHA! night, Thursday, Oct. 14, at 6:45 p.m. in the Cook Memorial Theater.

The presentation will focus on the Museum’s Palmer & Worth collection, which contain rare photographs of more than 200 buildings dating from the 1680s to the 1840s, compiled in an unpublished volume donated to the Old Dartmouth Historical Society in 1907 by Herbert and Anna Cushman.

Howland-Tripp house, east side of Pine Hill meeting house road, about 3/4 miles south of Head of Westport. Photo by Fred Palmer, c 1905 (#2000.100.80.77)

“Some of these buildings are still standing, many are not, and in many cases these photos are the only known images of some of our area’s earliest buildings,” said Mr. Maker, who lives in New Bedford and has done extensive research on many aspects of local history.

Beginning in 1904, photographer Fred W. Palmer and historian Henry B. Worth collaborated to document the earliest extant buildings in the original township of Old Dartmouth. Predominantly exterior views, the photos are currently held in their original form as nitrate and glass negatives in the Adaline H. Perkins Rand Photo & Digital Archive, located in the New Bedford Whaling Museum Research Library.

Henry Worth meticulously researched each of the buildings Palmer photographed, combining information from many sources with his own extensive knowledge of architectural styles and construction techniques.

Conceived by Mr. Maker, the Palmer & Worth project was conducted in the Museum’s Departments of Digital Initiatives, Photography, and the Research Library. This program is supported in part by grants from the Dartmouth and Fairhaven Cultural Councils, local agencies which are supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

View many of these photos through our flickr set.

For more information, contact:
Arthur Motta
Director, Marketing & Communications
(508) 997-0046, ext. 153

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