Home Textile Tool Museum
1819 Orwell Hill Rd., Orwell
At the Home Textile Tool Museum, we reconstruct textile fabrication, an important part of American farm life, as it was in the mid 1800's through demonstrations, displays and visitor participation.
All aspects of home textile production are shown and/or demonstrated, including flax and wool spinning, plain and overshot weaving, flax growing and preparation, keeping sheep, and natural dyeing.
Making fabrics at home, using homegrown materials, was a daily activity second only to preparing meals. Even children participated in this effort. Families made their own clothing, bed linen, coverlets, towels, rugs, and storage sacks for grain and other products, using primitive wooden equipment, often made by local craftsmen.
Tools such as those used by craftsmen in making spinning wheels, looms and related equipment are shown and demonstrated at the museum. Visitors are invited to try selected equipment under supervision.
The Home Textile Tool Museum is like no other museum. Not only can you see old spinning wheels, looms and tools of early America being used as they were 150 years ago, you can touch, and even try using them yourself (under safe and friendly supervision). Today we live in a world where no one needs to make anything and all of us are dependent on everyone for everything. In 1840, nine out of every ten people lived on the farm. People made most of what they needed themselves, using simple hand tools
These survival skills are now in danger of being forgotten but hopefully are still latent in ourselves. Our purpose is to preserve and rekindle an interest in making things ourselves by hand. That is why we encourage visitors to touch the tools our ancestors touched, to sit at the looms they sat at, to put their feet in the depressions on the treadles of a spinning wheel made by their bare feet.
THE MUSEUM IS OPEN 10 A.M. TO 4 P.M. Every SATURDAY RAIN OR SHINE May 23rd-August 29th. Bring a picnic lunch and relax.
[Note: On No Idle Hands (NIH) Saturday’s the first 10 children will be given a free kit appropriate for that day’s activity during the season]
ADMISSION: Adults $5.00 ; Children aged 12 and under free.
Note: Due to circumstances beyond our control the schedule may change. Please verify by e-mailing: info20httm.org or telephoning us at 570-247-7175 (leave a message).