More than six thousand artifacts
A Collection of Treasures
In its first year in 1917, the MHS established its headquarters in the family home of Cornelius Bushnell. Before long, generous members and volunteers had repaired the eighteenth-century building and outfitted it with donated heirlooms. Together they created a period house that welcomed visitors and preserved treasured objects and stories from Madison's past.
Preserving the stories of Madison was the primary focus of the organization’s earliest volunteers. In the 1950s and 1960s, the trustees and other recruits shifted their focus to the collection. During these years, the Allis-Bushnell House became home to more than 6,000 artifacts representative of Madison's rich history. Native arrowheads, early agricultural implements, and shipbuilding tools share valuable space with impressive examples of toys, textiles, clothing, porcelain, furnishings, portraits, and other artifacts of local significance. Today we continue to seek unique items of specific historical importance to the town and its people.
Our vibrant Flickr page features digital images of objects from our collection and highlights from our events. Launched in June 2016 by dedicated MHS volunteer, Bob Gundersen, this ongoing technology initiative enables us to reach people around the globe. Our Flickr page features nearly 7500 public images and has garnered more than 6 million visitor views.
History Mystery Contest
In the spring of 2020, during the statewide shutdown, the MHS developed new and innovative ways to engage the community and fulfill our mission in a virtual world while residents were sheltering in place. In April, we launched History Mystery--an online guessing game featuring artifacts from our collection.
Today, some of these objects are on display in the recently renovated E.C. Scranton Library. Click here to discover these mystery items and what purpose they served.
Donating an Object
The MHS is always looking to expand its collection of objects from Madison's rich cultural past.
If you would like to make a donation to the collection, contact our office at 203 245.4567 or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the process.