So now, anyone who Googles Swansea Historical Society, Lizzie’s chairs, Swansea farmhouse, etc. and live a remote distance from Swansea will hopefully land here and get a FREE peek at the chairs and inside the Luther’s Museum. But nothing beats being there, absorbing the ambience and touching these historical artifacts so indigenous to early American history and specifically the history of Swansea and its farming families. (Additional info follows with the link at the end of the slide show).
On August 3, 2007, Kristin Pepe and myself went to Swansea to visit Luther’s Museum at Luther’s Four Corner’s. For over 20 years I’ve been going past 160 Old Warren Road often stopping to take exterior pictures but never inside. Carl Becker, who lives only a block or two away, offered to open it up any time during my 5 day stay in Fall River.
The historical significance to Borden buffs is that Uncle John Vinnicum Morse stopped off at “Luther’s” after getting some farm fresh eggs at Andrew’s upper farmhouse at 217 Old Warren Road. (And hey, if they had farm fresh eggs on Wednesday night, why did Abby order 5 day old mutton for breakfast? Maybe Andrew wanted them to peddle for a penny more on the street.)
Hearing Mr. Becker relate the history of the area and the people over the decades who came to this store to talk and exchange information, purchase and trade necessities, Swansea comes alive with it’s rich history of the Gardners, the Luthers, the Braytons, etc. It’s much bigger inside than it looks from the outside….the second story is loaded with old furniture, tools, sewing machines, antique photographs and paintings of prominent families of eras gone by.
It is said that the two cane seat and wood chairs pictured here once belonged to Lizzie Borden, but the provenance is a little weak. I have a letter from a minister who knew the Borden girls obtained from his copy of an original Porter (Fall River Tragedy, 1893). In the letter he remarks about Lizzie, post 1905, going to the Swansea farm to see the horses, afterwards sitting in a chair for a while before her driver would take her back to “Maplecroft”. Pretty slim. But maybe they are. I was more impressed with the chair President George Washington sat in, as well as many other objects housed in this unique and wonderful museum operated by the Swansea Historical Society. THANK YOU MR. & MRS. BECKER!
Next time visiting Fall River or the area be sure to visit Luther’s.
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