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North Bennet Street School Partnership

At Coffin House
North Bennet Street School students taking measurements at the Coffin House.

Historic New England, a leader in preservation since its founding, has a long history of working with Boston's North Bennet Street School, which recently turned 125. In this partnership, North Bennet Street students followed preservation techniques and methods developed during the twentieth-century, and fabricated scale models of various building joints from four seventeenth-century Historic New England properties.

After visiting the Boardman House, Coffin House, Gedney House, and Pierce House to meet with staff and measure and photograph the joints, they returned to their workshop to construct the models, giving them first-hand experience with early building methods.

The resulting joint models are now used at the historic sites to enhance the visitors' understanding of seventeenth-century construction techniques. For example, at the Coffin House in Newbury, Massachusetts, the model teaches middle school students about seventeenth-century joinery and the use of hand tools in early building practices. The models are on display at these four sites throughout the season.

For more information, e-mail community engagement at Historic New England.


North Bennet Street School



North Bennet Street School Partnership