"12,000 years of Thanksgiving Traditions" Guided Tours
Guided Thanksgiving Tours are postponed until November 2022.
Guided tours on the hour from 10 am - 2 pm. The last 90-minute guided tour begins at 2 PM. Advanced ticket purchase recommended as a limited number of tickets are sold for each guided tour. Tour is recommended for ages 5+.
Members free; Adults $15; Children (ages 5-17) $10; Children (under 5) free; Military, Military families; Veterans free
November visitors to Portsmouth can trace the evolution of Thanksgiving from traditional celebrations of the Abenaki people to today’s family feast and homecoming at Strawbery Banke Museum, the 10-acre outdoor living history museum.
This 90-minute, fast-paced, multi-sensory program, explains how Thanksgiving transcended time, place, and culture to become the uniquely American holiday celebrated today. Participants in the tour meet costumed roleplayers and explore homes from three centuries. In small groups guided by a museum educator, find the common themes of this holiday over three hundred years: charity, survival, gratitude, national identity, and the celebration of family and community.
- Jones House (1790): Explore the new People of the Dawnland exhibit and learn about the traditional celebrations of the Abenaki people who have lived in New Hampshire for over 12,000 years.
- Goodwin Mansion (1870): Experience the height of the Victorian period and a Thanksgiving celebration that shares many traditions with celebrations today. Learn about the Goodwin family and Governor Ichabod Goodwin’s special November proclamation
- Shapiro House (1919): Share in the experience of a Jewish immigrant family who came from Ukraine to Portsmouth in the early 20th century. Mrs. Shapiro is learning about American Thanksgiving with its strange foods like pumpkin pie, while also keeping her traditional customs.
- Abbott House (1943): Portsmouth is in the midst of World War II. The war has changed jobs, industry, food, and education—few parts of life were untouched. Thanksgiving was no exception.
- Wheelwright (1780): Discover the sights and smells of an 18th-century Thanksgiving and learn how different harvest and religious traditions evolved into the celebration we know today.