Group Tours at Sarah Orne Jewett House (1774)
An author’s inspiration
A National Historic Landmark
Author Sarah Orne Jewett (1849-1909) spent much of her life in this 1774 Georgian house, owned by her family since 1819, even using it as an inspiration for her novel Deephaven. Jewett and her sister Mary inherited the house and decorated it for their own use, expressing both a pride in their family’s past and their own independent, sophisticated tastes.
The result is an eclectic blend of eighteenth-century architecture, antiques, and wallpapers with furnishings showing the influence of the Arts and Crafts movement. Tour this National Historic Landmark and learn about Jewett’s life and celebrated career. See the original desk where she often wrote, situated in the upper hall overlooking South Berwick’s active town center. In the Visitor Center, next door, a Greek Revival home where Sarah Orne Jewett lived as a child, see exhibitions and browse the museum shop.
5 Portland Street, South Berwick, Maine
Hours of Operation:
- Open year round
- June 1 to October 15, Friday through Sunday, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- November 1 to May 31, first and third Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- All group tours must be scheduled by appointment. In addition to open days, group tours may be scheduled at times the museum is closed to the public.
We are happy to work with you to customize your experience.
- Guided House Tour: Enjoy an approximately one hour guided tour; please allow one and a half hours for your visit.
- Book Discussion Tour: Enjoy a tour of Sarah Orne Jewett’s home including her writing desk, and learn about the place and people who inspired her. After your tour, enjoy tea and conversation on the book considered Jewett’s masterpiece Country of the Pointed Firs. Other Jewett book selections may be possible for your group.
- Guided Tour and Gallery Walk: Enjoy a guided tour of the Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and a guided gallery walk of the exhibition on view at the Sarah Orne Jewett Visitor Center.
- Sarah Orne Jewett and the Tysons: Visit both Sarah Orne Jewett House Museum and nearby Hamilton House for a day’s outing. Learn about the friendship between Sarah Orne Jewett and the Tyson family and their roles in preserving Hamilton House. Enjoy a picnic lunch at Hamilton House or visit one of the local restaurants in South Berwick.
- Up to 12 visitors can tour the house with each guide; generally we can accommodate up to 50 visitors in the house in one hour. Accommodations can be made for larger groups.
- Please note that the tour requires a considerable amount of standing and climbing stairs. If members of your group need special assistance, please let the museum know in advance.
- Guided House Tour: $10 per adult for groups of 8 or more visitors. Additional rates apply for all other tours. Prices subject to change.
- Receptive tour operator rates available upon request.
- The tour leader and bus driver are welcome to a complimentary tour with the group.
- A non-refundable deposit based on your maximum number is due upon booking. The outstanding balance must be paid when the group arrives on-site for the tour.
- Please call two weeks in advance to confirm a guaranteed number of visitors.
- A variety of local restaurants in South Berwick include: Isidore on the Rocks Tavern, Nolka, Thistle Pig, Asia Café, and Mikey’s Wicked Good Pizza.
- Visit the nearby town of York, Maine, with quaint shops, several dining options, and beaches.
- Visit another Historic New England property nearby. Package discounts available.
- Hamilton House, South Berwick – A Colonial Revival country house in a pastoral setting overlooking the Salmon Falls River.
- The Sarah Orne Jewett Visitor Center features:
- One wheelchair-accessible restroom
- Gallery featuring rotating exhibitions with an emphasis on regional art
- Museum shop offering an assortment of books, including those by and about Sarah Orne Jewett
- Resource room with an interactive kiosk
- Ample street parking is available.
- Food and drink are prohibited in the museum.
- Touching, leaning, or sitting on the objects is prohibited.
- Cell phones should be silenced prior to your tour.
- Your group will stay with the tour guide for the entire tour.
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