Discover Portsmouth Exhibits, Programs & Events

2017 Walking Tours of Historic Portsmouth, NH

Walking tour Sandy WalentMay Through October

“Portsmouth and its pleasures are smaller scale. They’re also best approached on foot.” –New York Times.

Portsmouth is the hub of the New Hampshire Seacoast. Its downtown streets are reminiscent of a small English market village. Portsmouth’s unique, historical character can be fully captured on foot. If you’re visiting Portsmouth for a meal, an afternoon or a weekend consider taking a Discover Portsmouth walking tour!

Portsmouth Historical Society presents 2017 Tour Offerings

Reservations strongly encouraged. Walk-ins welcome. Member discounts apply.

All tours leave from Discover Portsmouth, 10 Middle Street, Portsmouth NH [Read more…]

Portsmouth Historical Society Announces 2017 Exhibitions

at Discover Portsmouth and John Paul Jones House.

Back-to-back exhibitions feature Seacoast history, arts & culture

Portsmouth, New Hampshire…Following record-breaking attendance at last year’s acclaimed art exhibitions, Portsmouth Historical Society plans another blockbuster year at Discover Portsmouth and the John Paul Jones House.

four centuries of furniture“Four Centuries of Furniture in Portsmouth” kicks off the 2017 spring season (April 7-June 18) with 50 fascinating works from the colonial and federal periods. This classic exhibition will demonstrate why the fine craftsmanship of Portsmouth artisans is universally respected and sought after. Featured objects in the historic 1810-era Academy Gallery will be drawn from a wide range of private and public collections. Upstairs in the balcony, the exhibition includes unique contemporary works by members of the New Hampshire Furniture Masters. Participants include expert woodworkers Jon Brooks, Jeffrey Cooper, David Lamb, Richard Oedel, and many more. READ MORE…

“Seacoast Sculpture, from Material to Masterwork,” (July 7-October 1). The second major exhibition will focus on works by three renowned locals in three different media–ceramics by Jane Kaufmann, metal sculpture by Sumner Winebaum, and woodworks by Michael Stasiuk. The companion exhibition in the balcony will feature the works of two dozen ceramic sculptors, all members of the New Hampshire Potters Guild. [Read more…]

Four Centuries of Portsmouth Furniture Lecture Series

Portsmouth Historical Society presents this FREE lecture series open to the public. All lectures take place at Discover Portsmouth, 10 Middle Street, Portsmouth, New Hampshire. For information, call 603-436-8433

From Joiner to Cabinetmaker: Early Furniture from the Seacoast

Gerald W.R. Ward and Hollis Brodrick
Thursday April 20, 2017, 5:30-6:30pm
Doors open at 5pm; galleries open during the evening
Gerald W.R. Ward, curator of the exhibition, and noted Portsmouth antiques dealer Hollis Brodrick will present an overview of the show in a brief lecture followed by an informal gallery tour. The evening offers an opportunity for close and in-depth study of several key pieces in the exhibition, particularly those from the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, from several perspectives.
[Read more…]

New Portsmouth Marine Society Title 2017!

Four Centuries of Furniture in Portsmouth

Four Centuries of Furniture in Portsmouth, with the New Hampshire Furniture Masters

by Gerald W. R. Ward, with assistance from Hollis Brodrick and Lainey McCartney

Softcover, 88 pgs, full color, 8.5 x 9, ISBN: 978-0-915819-45-4. $24.95

Order Now

For many years, the early furniture of Portsmouth and the New Hampshire Seacoast has been of interest to collectors and connoisseurs. This catalogue, featuring about sixty works from many public and private collections, re-visits some of the classic pieces of Portsmouth furniture, including works by Robert Harrold and the firm of Judkins and Senter. READ MORE

John Paul Jones 270th Birthday Party

John Paul Jones House

Save the Date!

Sunday, July 9, 2017 1-4pm

John Paul Jones House, National Historic Landmark, 43 Middle Street, Portsmouth, New Hampshire

free admission, house tours, music with Great Bay Sailor,
family fun, refreshments

Father of US Navy:
“I have not yet begun to fight!”

Portsmouth, New Hampshire… Always wondered what that beautiful yellow mansion was on the corner of Middle and State Streets in downtown Portsmouth? Always wanted to come into the gardens, peek inside the house but haven’t put that on your calendar yet? Now’s your chance. On Sunday July 9 at 1pm, the Portsmouth Historical Society, which runs Discover Portsmouth and which saved the John Paul Jones House in 1917, is hosting a free 270th birthday party (born July 6, 1747) for the father of the US Navy, who spoke the immortal words, “I have not yet begun to fight!” [Read more…]

Wendy Turner’s New Book Available

Wendy Turner Island Light

Wendy Turner – Island Light,

Carl Little, with contributions by Catherine Armsden and Mekeel McBride
Portsmouth Marine Society Publication 36
Hardcover with jacket, 112 pages, 10 x 12, full color throughout
$40.00 ISBN: 978-0-915819-44-7
Order Online

Wendy Turner’s paintings of the Maine and New Hampshire coast, from the Schoodic Point to the Isles of Shoals, done over a period of thirty-five years, demonstrate the range and talent of this artist who lives and works in Kittery Point, Maine.  While often based on the plants, water, rocks, sky, and sea life of the Seacoast in terms of their subject matter, her watercolor and oil paintings have an ineffable quality that elevates them from depictions of nature to transcendent and sublime works of art. This book follows her work through various transitions in her career, starting with her delicate watercolor images of tide pools.  Over time, her focus moved from images taken along the beach, to beautiful garden studies, and then moving on to her large tour-de-force rock and wave paintings. [Read more…]

A Visitor Center. A Community Center. A Nonprofit Hub.

Discover Portsmouth Center

We are dedicated to increasing public understanding and enthusiasm for local history. Our trustees, staff, sponsors, and members believe strongly that the uniqueness of Portsmouth is defined by the city’s past. Our mission is to provide a central location where, in cooperation with other groups, we can introduce, interpret, and stimulate the study of Portsmouth history.