Museums of the Bethel Historical Society

Restore Renew Reconnect:

The Mason House 50-Year Campaign

The 1813 Dr. Moses and Agnes Straw Mason House has now been a cultural center for our community for fifty years. We need your help to secure the house’s future for another half century and beyond.

Since the home was first presented to the Bethel Historical Society in 1974, tens of thousands have passed through the doors of the Mason House for a tour, school trip, or special event. The gift of the home by the William Bingham Trust for Charity was transformational for the young Society and allowed us to grow into the museum of regional history and culture we are today.

From the remarkably well-preserved Rufus Porter-school wall murals to the incredible collection of original artifacts from Bethel’s early history, the home offers a truly unique experience that continues to delight and intrigue people of all ages.

Campaign Goals

After fifty years, the Mason House is now facing some critical and expensive repair needs: replacing the asbestos-containing roofing materials from the original restoration; repairing window frames, sashes, and shutters; and replacing some siding. We need to raise $150,000 to complete this work.

Future Plans

Making these critical repairs to the Mason House is part of an overall effort to ensure that the home remains a valuable part of a flourishing community. By securing the structural integrity of the building now, we can direct our focus to exciting goals, including:

  • Multiplying our impact in the community by expanding collaborations with other local organizations and providing space within the walls of our facilities for other worthy projects.
  • Building on our most popular programs and increasing the number of holiday events, concerts, workshops, demonstrations, and tours that take place within the Mason House.
  • Broadening our focus to research and share a wider range of stories connected with the home and with Bethel during the time of the Masons’ occupancy.

We invite you to please join us in our efforts to ensure that generations to come will continue to enjoy the opportunity to experience everything the Mason House has to offer!

Ready to contribute?

Mason House 50-Year Campaign contributions in any amount may be made to the Bethel Historical Society at P.O. Box 12, Bethel, ME 04217. Acknowledgments of gifts will be promptly mailed to donors. You also may donate online by clicking the button below!