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WEB ARCHIVE 2010-2018

Current programs are posted at

Somerville Museum Programs 2017


Previous years' programs


Sunday, January 8, 3:00 p.m. 

La Folia: Renaissance and Baroque Masterpieces from Spain.  

Ensemble Très Maresienne (Lisa Brooke, violin; Olav Chris Henriksen, vihuela & Baroque guitar; Carol Lewis, viola da gamba) perform music by Ortiz, Cabezon, Milan, Selma, Scarlatti, Sanz and de Murcia. The concert will feature four very different "Folia" variation sets spanning three centuries!

General admission: $20; $15 for students, seniors and Museum members. 

More about Early Music Afternoons


Sunday, February 12, 3:00 p.m. 

In the Service of Her Majesty: Music from the World of Anthony Holborne. 

El Dorado Ensemble (Carol Lewis, Janet Haas, Mai-Lan Broekman, Paul Johnson, Alice Mroszczyk, violas da gamba; Olav Chris Henriksen, lute, bandora & cittern) perform renaissance dances, ballad tunes and fantasies by Holborne and his contemporaries, including Byrd, Morley and John Johnson.

General admission: $20; $15 for students, seniors and Museum members. 

More about Early Music Afternoons



Sunday, February 26, 2:00 -3:00 p.m. Reception to follow

Charles Bulfinch and the Barrell Mansion 

Joseph Cornish, Director of Design Review for the Environmental Department, discusses the architecture of Charles Bulfinch, with particular reference to the Barrell mansion of Somerville.  

General Admission: $8; free to members.



Sunday, March 5, 3:00 p.m.  

From Minuet to Ragtime: The English Guitar and its Impact on the Early Banjo. 

Plucked-instrument experts Lauck Benson and Olav Chris Henriksen play a variety of solos and duos on English guitar, Spanish guitar, harp guitar lute, and banjo, including music by Oswald, Anne Ford, Marrella, Buckley, Foster, Stewart and Ossman. There will be a fugue, some jigs, and some surprises.

General admission: $20; $15 for students, seniors and Museum members. 

More about Early Music Afternoons



Sunday, March 12, 2:00 -3:00 p.m. Reception to follow

Inventing the Charles RiverKarl Haglund. Haglund is Manager of the DCR's new Charles River Basin project and author of Inventing the Charles River. He is an entertaining speaker and will address the history of this major waterway near Somerville.  

General Admission: $8; free to members.




Sunday, April 23, 4:00 - 6:30 p.m.

Somerville Open Studios First Look Exhibit: Opening Reception

The SOS First Look Exhibit offers the best opportunity to preview the studios and artists' work. All SOS participating artists are invited to submit work, creating a group show that is unparalleled in diversity and excitement. Come to SOS First Look to plan your weekend.

The exhibit continues through May 19, 2017.


SOS weekend hours (May 4-7): Thursday 2-7 pm, Friday 2-9 pm, Saturday and Sunday 11am-6pm

Regular hours: Thursday 2-7pm, Friday 2-5 pm, Saturday noon-5pm

Duo Maresienne


Sunday, April 30, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.

Gallant Fantasies: Music of Telemann, Baron, Weiss and Abel. 

Duo Maresienne (Carol Lewis, violas da gamba; Olav Chris Henriksen, Baroque lute) perform late Baroque works by several of the finest German masters of instrumental music, including newly discovered fantasies by Telemann and Weiss.

General admission: $20; $15 for students, seniors and Museum members. 

More about Early Music Afternoons



Sunday, June 18, 2:00 - 3:00 p.m. Reception to follow

Revisiting  the  Flag  at  Prospect  Hill: Grand  Union  or  just  British. A  talk  by Byron  DeLear

A Special  2017  Local  History  Lecture  in  Honor  of  Somerville's  175th  Anniversary

When  and  where  did  the  national  identity  of  the  United  States  of  America first form?    How  was  our   national  identity  tied  to  the  Grand  Union  Flag  flown  at Prospect  Hill  on  New  Year's  Day  of  1776. DeLear  tells  a  tale  that  includes figures  such  as  General  Washington  and  Robert  Morris,  the  "financier   of  the American  Revolution"  and  iconic  flags  and  symbols  of  the  East  India Company and  more. 

Byron  DeLear  is  Editor  in  Chief  of  the  North  American  Vexillogical  Association   (NAVA),  the  primary  organization  for the  scientific  and  scholarly study of flags.

Economic History Series - Spring 2017

The Somerville Museum is bringing history into the community in this Economic History series co-presented with the Union Square Playlist. Special thanks to The Welcome Project, Aeronaut Brewing Co. and the Somerville Council on Aging for partnering with us to host events. Panels and talks at Aeronaut Brewing Co. are welcome to all ages (21+ to sample the brewery's craft beers), and some of the events will be followed by concerts. This discussion series is supported by Mass Humanities whose grants inspire considered thought, conversation, and action through the humanities. We're happy to participate in their mission to improve civic life in Massachusetts.


More about


Events schedule is posted on the Union Square Playlist Facebook Page



Weds., May 10, 6:30-8:00 p.m. held at The Welcome Project, 530 Mystic Avenue, Somerville


Weds., May 24, 6:30-8:00 p.m. held at Aeronaut Brewing Co., 14 Tyler Street, Somerville

Immigration and Somerville's Economy: A Historical Perspective: A Panel Discussion
Somerville is the most densely populated city in New England, and about a third of the city's 80,000 residents are immigrants. This panel discussion focuses on the historical role of immigration in Somerville's economy. Moderated by the Massachusetts Historical Society's Director of Programs Gavin W. Kleespies, the panel includes public historian Edward Gordon, the Welcome Project's Executive Director Ben Echevarria and members of Somerville's business community. How have immigrants from Ireland, Italy, Greece, Portugal, Haiti, Cape Verdi, and other Central and South American countries shaped early Somerville? The panel at Aeronaut Brewing Co. will be followed by a performance from Bolivia Canta. Bolivia Canta formed over 15 years ago to showcase music from the Andes in the Boston area. The band has played every Friday night at Somerville's Machu Picchu Restaurant for the last ten years.

Read an article about this program: Historians and entrepreneurs discuss Somerville’s immigration and economy


Saturday, May 13, 2017, noon - 1:30 p.m. held at Aeronaut Brewing Company
An Economic History of Somerville, Massachusetts
Co-sponsored with the Somerville Historic Preservation Commission
This is a repeat of historian Ed Gordon's sold-out March 15th discussion event at Aeronaut. The talk and Q&A ends at 1:30 with plenty of time to take in  Porchfest 2017 which runs until 6 pm. Ed Gordon's talk is supported in part by Mass Humanities. 


Wednesday, May 31, 10:30 a.m. held at the Somerville Council on Aging, 167 Holland Street, Somerville


Wednesday, June 21, 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. held at Aeronaut Brewing Company

A History of Somerville's Oldest Commercial District: Union Square
Charan Devereaux presents a slideshow and discussion about the economic history of Somerville's oldest commercial district, Union Square. The discussion will profile some of the Square's biggest employers beginning in the 1800s, including the meat-packing, glass-blowing, and textile finishing industries.

The Aeronaut Brewing Co. event will also feature a selection of photographs and histories of businesses spanning the last 100 years, and will be followed by Union Square Playlist artist Josh Lederman at 8:00 p.m.





Sunday, September 10, 3:00-4:00 p.m.

The Old Powder House's 300 Years of History

Lawrence Willwerth discusses the history of the Powder House.
Reception to follow.

General Admission: $8; free to members



Sunday, October 8, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.

Le Petit Concert: Chamber Music from 18th-century France

Duo Maresienne (Carol Lewis, pardessus de viole & bass viola da gamba; Olav Chris Henriksen, theorbo & baroque guitar) perform music from the elegant age of Louis XV. There will be an enchanting chaconne, sprightly dances, and pieces with many different characters by Marais, Dollé, Hugard, de Visée & Campion.

Admission is $20 for the general public, $15 for students, seniors, and Museum members.

GhostsSunday, October 22, 2017 2:00 - 4:30 p.m. held at the 1804 Milk Row Cemetery, next to Market Basket on Somerville Ave.

Ghosts of Somerville at Milk Cemetery

As part of the SomerStreets Festival 2017's Monster Mash-up, Revolutionary War re-enactors from His Majesty's Regiment of Foot and members of the 54th Regiment of the Union Army will be at the cemertery, accompanied by the Somerville High School Local History Club performing in historic-era costumes. Members of Historic Somerville will guide you through the cemetery. Come learn Somerville history from those who lived it! Not to be missed!

Admission: $5 suggested donation for visitors 12 yrs old and up; free for those under 12.

Hot Cider, doughnuts and baked goods $1 each.


VetsSaturday, November 11, 2017 at 2:30 p.m. held at the 1804 Milk Row Cemetery, next to Market Basket on Somerville Ave.

Local members of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts will conduct a ceremony to remember those veterans from Somerville, who are buried here and served in the Revolutionary War or War of 1812 and those who are memorialized here. The 1863 Civil War monument is one of the oldest in the country and is dedicated to the volunteers who enlisted in the Union Army from Somerville and who died to preserve the Union. To remember the unknown British soldier who is buried in Milk Row Cemetery, members of HSM Regiment of Foot will also attend.


WWISunday, November 12, 2017, 2:00 - 3:00, reception to follow


Dr. Daniel Breen will talk about World World I, the War to End All Wars one hundred years after. Breen will bring the conflict to life as we visit the deployment of the 26nd Yankee Division along with other American troops and the welcome impact they had on the outcome of the war. If you have not heard Dr. Breen before, you have a treat in store. He is a wonderful, energetic and entertaining speaker and, as a professor of history at Brandeis University, he has deep knowledge of his subject.
Admission is $8.00 for members of the public; free to members
Free parking is available on Westwood Road or Central St.

Tickets can be purchased in advance by clicking here.


Sunday, November 26, 2017 at 3:00 p.m.

La Romanesca: A Variety of Lute and Guitar Music from Rome. Music from the Eternal City

Olav Chris Henriksen (lute, theorbo, baroque guitar) plays toccatas, a sinfonia, a passacaglia and other baroque treats by Frescobaldi, Kapsperger, Foscarini and Colista. The concert will feature Pierre Gaultier's "Battle" for lute in sharp tuning.

Admission is $20 for the general public, $15 for students, seniors, and Museum members.




Friday, Dec. 8, 7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Historic Somerville and Somerville Museum Winter Holiday Party

Please join us for our annual winter holiday event with music, good food, entertainment and great cheer for all. All are welcome!

Join Historic Somerville and the Somerville Museum for our Annual Winter Holiday Party featuring live music, great food, and good cheer. There will be a raffle for prizes, historic costume fashion show with the local history club members of the Somerville High School, wonderful floral arrangements provided by our local florists, and more. You'll also be able to buy unique gifts for that Somerville history enthusiast!

Admission is $8.00 for members of the public; free to members, volunteers and supporters.


The American Association for State and Local History (AASLH) recently awarded the Somerville Museum and Charan Devereaux a 2017 Leadership in History Award of Merit for "Union Square at Work: Photographs Stories and Music from Somerville's Oldest Commercial District" and the project's related concerts, programs, and music collection (the Union Square Somerville Playlist). The AASLH Leadership in History Awards, now in its 72nd year, is the most prestigious recognition for achievement in the preservation and interpretation of state and local history. The Somerville Museum and Devereaux wish to thank all of the participating Union Square business owners and employees, non-profit staff members, artists, volunteers and supporters for their contributions in bringing the project to reality. Special thanks to support from Mass Humanities, the Somerville Arts Council/Massachusetts Cultural Council, the Club Passim Iguana Fund, State Representative Denise Provost, the Massachusetts Historical Society's Gavin Kleespies, and the members of the Somerville Museum.

Many thanks to the Somerville Times for its article "The Somerville Museum's 'Union Square at Work' Wins Award."


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