Cummington Seal
Cummington
Official Town Web Site
Cummington

Kingman Tavern

Open
Saturdays
in
July
&
August
2 to 5 pm

41 Main Street, Cummington, MA

No
Admission
Fee

Donations
Appreciated

Most small towns feel fortunate in having a historical museum of two or three rooms. Here in Cummington, the museum is an early 1800's house of seventeen rooms, which was a tavern. There is also a replica of a 1900 country store, a two-story barn, a carriage shed, and an 1840's cider mill.
The 5,000 or more articles that fill these buildings reflect the life that has been lived in this small hilltown over the past two hundred years.

Alice Steele, a nationally known miniaturist, spent her life in this area. She made over 300 miniature rooms, each a work of art.  The seventeen, which are in this museum, all made and given by her, represent rooms or shops that were connected with Cummington. In perfect scale of one inch to one foot, the furnishings are antiques collected over the years, or furniture and other items made by her husband, Frank Steele, a cabinet-maker.  This collection is just one of the treasures of the Kingman Tavern Museum

Minature Rooms

Country Store

The museum was able to acquire the complete fixtures of a Cummington general store that had gone out of business. A new building was constructed around the fixtures using old wood.
The shelves are filled with virtually everything that would have been sold in a country store in 1900-1910.  It also includes letterboxes and windows from early local post offices. A card tacked on the front gives the weather forecast as received by the postmaster each day.
No store would have been complete without the traditional stove, checkerboard, and cracker barrel.

The larger two-story barn has an exceptional collection of hand and farm tools, arranged in categories of use. Jacob Lovell made many of the planes exhibited in Cummington.  The carriage shed has an ox-shoeing frame, a snow roller for roads, a school bus on runners for winter use, an ice cutter, and a butter and egg wagon, all used in Cummington.  The 1840's cider mill with its wooden gears is in working condition except for the press. The wear on the wooden teeth shows the years of use.