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From Sea to Sky: Outfitting for Travel

At the turn of the twentieth century, the streets of Lynn, Massachusetts were bustling with automobiles, train tracks, and trolley cars and our skies were dotted with hot air balloons and early planes taking off from our beaches. As an epicenter of American industry and culture, commuters and immigrants flocked to and through Lynn on their way to work at the many up and coming industries in Boston and its outlying cities. On the same tracks, leisure goers visited neighboring beaches and amusement parks with their children.


This exhibit puts a twist on travel and transportation by playfully looking at the clothing, luggage, tools, art, and souvenirs those travelers utilized and collected. We encourage viewers to think about larger ideas about travel and their own traveling habits: how have travel and its accessories evolved over the last century? With the age of the Internet and self-driving vehicles upon us, how can we connect to history through the material culture presented here? What is the one thing you cannot leave home without, and do you see it here? We hope you discover new ideas and find inspiration to take with you on your own journey.


This exhibit is on view through the end of 2016. Located in our second floor galleries.


This exhibit is supported in part by a grant from the Lynn Cultural Council, a local agency which is supported by the Massachusetts Cultural Council, a state agency.

This exhibition features a rotation of images from the Lynn Museum & Historical Society’s photography collection, many of which have never been previously exhibited. Different aspects of Lynn’s history, including daily life, architecture, and events, are highlighted, representing our past, present, and possible future. The pictures seen here are reproductions, enlarged to show detail and scale, and to protect the original photograph from light damage.


This exhibit is permanent, with quarterly rotations of images. Located in our first floor galleries.

FOCUS/FLASH: Snapshots from the Collection

The Postcards of Lynn

In the decades around 1900, postcards were social media, they were e-mail, Twitter, Facebook, and Flickr, all wrapped into one. This exhibition provides an extraordinary and nostalgic window into the cultural, social, and architectural history of early twentieth-century Lynn and its vibrant neighborhoods. We invite you to explore this exhibition of vintage postcards depicting some of the city’s famous places and spaces in bygone days. We have postcards available for purchase in our gift shop so you can send your very own!


This exhibit is permanent, located in our first floor galleries.

Lynn Legacies

Lynn has a strong history of being the home to amazing individuals, organizations, events, and movements. Click here to see some of those who we have honored in our former Lynn Legacies Hall. This exhibition is now housed exclusively online for our audience to enjoy.


Industry & Craft: People At Work In Lynn

"Industry & Craft: People At Work In Lynn" explores the different industries of Lynn Massachusetts, and shows that the "Shoe City" has contributed to many revolutionizing inventions and the economy. From early productions such as flax and ice to modern day companies like General Electric, this exhibition displays the artifacts of the Lynn Museum & Historical Society and shares the stories of real people at work in Lynn.


This exhibit is permanent, located in our second floor galleries.

Collecting For: The Artifacts of Lynn

What is a museum? Why do museums collect? "Collecting For: The Artifacts of Lynn" features highlights from the collection of the Lynn Museum & Historical Society, and information on the history and evolution of this institution. Explore concepts regarding museum collecting from the earliest "cabinets of curiosities" to modern day museums. Spotlights include our Victorian furniture and decorative arts collection, Abolitionism and collecting to preserve the history of social movements, and historic preservation.


This exhibit is permanent, located in our second floor galleries.

seatosky (2)

Welcome to the Lynn Theatre!

During the 20th century, Lynn was known for many things. Shoes, shopping, diners, and beaches were only some of the highlights. Once home to over a dozen theatres and other places of entertainment, Lynn was the place to see a show. Through our photogrpah collection we preserve the memory of these buildings and the joy they brought to their patrons.


This exhibit includes photographs and ephemera from former Lynn theatres, comfortable seating, and a television to watch a film selected by our curator. We also have a small piano that visitors can play, to entertain other visitors to the museum.


This exhibit is permanent, located in our second floor galleries.