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About Us


Our Mission

To record and preserve the history, traditions, and artifacts of Cuttyhunk Island and the Elizabeth Islands of Massachusetts, and to engage the community and public through education, exhibitions, and outreach.



Initially founded in 1978 as the Cuttyhunk Historical Association by the Cuttyhunk Union Methodist Church, CHS has flourished thanks to a sense of preservation and support from islanders and visitors alike. As its focus and mission grew, the Association evolved into the Cuttyhunk Historical Society and was incorporated as a not-for-profit corporation in 1980. Exhibits were displayed in the school and the library as space permitted.

By the end of the decade, plans were underway to provide CHS with a permanent home. In 1991, thanks to the generosity of many and built on land donated by Oriel Wood Ponzecchi in memory of her parents, Cornelius and Muriel (Prindle) Wood, the current Museum of the Elizabeth Islands was dedicated. This building has provided CHS with a place to house its growing collection and library, host two exhibits each summer and engage the community in the stories, customs and history of the Elizabeth Islands.  

Land Acknowledgment

Founded in 1602, Cuttyhunk Island stands on the historic homelands of the Massachusett people, a site which has long served as a place of meeting and exchange among different nations. CHS and the Museum of the Elizabeth Islands acknowledge the long history of the land we occupy today and seek ways to make Indigenous narratives more prominent in our galleries and programming. We can all learn more about the Massachusett people, who continue to be the stewards of this land, by visiting”

Link to the Cuttyhunk Story

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