Afternoon view of the Atwood House Museum.


The collection of the Chatham Historical Society includes over 4,000 objects (paintings, decorative arts, maritime artifacts, etc.)—mainly American-made and mostly Chatham related.

In addition, our archives contain about 3,000 photographs, over 1,600 books, and thousands of documents relating to the history of Chatham. These items have been (or are being) cataloged and are available to researchers by visiting the Museum. The catalog of our collections is also now available online.

Use the links on the thumbnails below to visit individual descriptions and overviews about the collection.

Example of Stained glass window at Atwood House Museum.

China & Glass

Example of antique clothing displayed at the Atwood House Museum.

Costumes & Textiles

Antique drop leaf desk at the Atwood House Museum.


The Library

Nautical Charts

Oral Histories



Donating to the Collection

The Chatham Historical Society receives a variety of fascinating historical material which is donated and added to the collection throughout the year. A review committee of Museum staff and volunteers meets monthly to discuss which items to accept into the collection. The review and acquisition process, called Accessioning, can sometimes take from several weeks to a few months because we study the material, and consider storage, preservation, and conservation needs.

To donate items to the collection, please send us an email to [email protected] describing your item(s) including size, condition, and relevance to the Museum. Please provide pictures whenever possible. Thank you for your interest and consideration.