Matthews Heritage Museum

Matthews, North Carolina

Matthews Heritage Museum

“Where Children Experience… and Adults Remember”

What’s New at the Museum?

Many people know that Caleb Bradham, a pharmacist in New Bern invented Brad’s Drink in the late 1880s, later to be known as Pepsi-Cola. His aim was to create a drink that was delicious and healthful, aiding digestion and boosting energy. He was confident his drink would be a taste-good, cure-all for modern ailments.

The Matthews Heritage Museum will have on display an exhibit on Pepsi: Born in the Carolinas from July 9 to November 19, 2022.

Read more about our new exhibit here

Pepsi: Born in the Carolinas


Tours of the Historic Reid House!

Have you ever driven past the Reid House on West John Street and thought, “Boy I would like to be able to tour inside!” Well, your wish will soon be coming true!

The Matthews Heritage Museum has spent this summer creating a new tour of the Historic Reid House for tours to the public. Two years ago the Matthews Historical Foundation asked if the Docents would be willing to open the Reid House for tours. It was decided that we could open the house for tours once a quarter. The days open will vary so people with different schedules might be able to tour. Normally the Reid House is only open for rentals.

The first day that the Reid House, at 134 W. John Street, will be open for tours will be Thursday, September 29. Guided tours will be given at 1pm, 2pm, and 3pm that day. Dr. and Mrs. Reid will be waiting to greet you and give you a tour of the house! (They might not always be there.) We request you make a reservation for the tour, as we are limiting 10 people per tour. Call the museum at 704-708-4996. Recommended donation is $5 per person.

Tours of the house will be given around Christmas with the house decorated in its finery. In April, the house will again be on tour during the Victorian Lawn Party. In the fall, we hope to open the house in conjunction with the quarterly Main Line Market sponsored by the Town of Matthews, NC. Keep an eye open for future dates.

For more information, please contact Barbara Taylor, Director, at 704-708-4996.

Best of The Weeklies Reader’s Choice Awards

The votes are in for the 2022 Best of The Weeklies Reader’s Choice Awards and once again the Matthews Heritage Museum was voted the Best Museum in Matthews-Mint Hill!

Volunteer Opportunity

The Matthews Heritage Museum is looking for individuals to serve as docents or tour guides. Do you like to learn? Do you like history? Join the group of women and men who are conducting guided tours of the Museum. The rewards are great!

Each volunteer is asked to take one shift of 3 hours once a month. Shifts are AM: 10 to 1, PM: 1 to 4. We are looking to recruit volunteers for the specific shifts of the first, second, and third Thursday afternoons of the month, the third Friday of the month, and either the second Saturday morning or afternoon shift.

In addition to learning history, you will enjoy getting to know this interesting group. Occasionally the volunteers will take trips to other historic sites of interest. An initial training class of 4 days will orient new volunteers. A new training class will be offered beginning Wednesday, May 4, 2022, from 10 to 12 and will be held weekly until June 1. Ongoing training is held for new exhibits and other new research.

The Museum is open Thursday to Saturday each week from 10:00 AM to 4:30 PM. Volunteers are needed to be present for a morning or afternoon shift at least once a month on one of those days. Additionally, you may be asked to give a tour to school groups, senior groups, or scouts when they are scheduled.

To learn more about becoming a volunteer, please call 704-708-4996 during operating hours. Thank you for considering becoming a docent for the Matthews Heritage Museum!

Museum Open

The Museum is open during its regular hours of Thursday–Saturday, from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Newsletter Available

Pick up a free copy of Foundations, the Matthews Historical Foundation’s newsletter, at the Museum. You can also read issues by clicking the links below.

Read the Fall 2022 issue of Foundations

Read the Summer 2022 issue of Foundations

Read the Spring 2022 issue of Foundations

Read the Winter 2021 issue of Foundations

People buried in Roseland Cemetery

Roseland Cemetery off Monroe Road was the burial place of slaves and free people of color. It has recently undergone preservation efforts. As a means of supplementing this work, the Matthews Heritage Museum would like to hear from those whose relatives are buried there.

If you have relatives buried there we would like to hear from you to add their names to our list. We would like to know the person’s full name, their birth and death dates, your name and your relationship to that person, and a phone number in case we have questions.

Please send information to us at You may also call 704-708-4996. Please help us create this important information.

Roseland Cemetery Burials

Little Free Library

Little Free Library Charter #25690

The Matthews Heritage Museum has a Little Free Library (Charter #25690) in front of the Museum. Like other Little Free Libraries, it’s a “take a book, return a book” free book exchange, where neighbors share their favorite literature and stories. In its most basic form, a Little Free Library is a box full of books where anyone may stop by and pick up a book (or two) and bring back another book to share.

Little Free Library is a nonprofit organization based in Hudson, Wisconsin. In the beginning (2009), Todd Bol of Hudson, Wisconsin, built a model of a one-room schoolhouse as a tribute to his mother, a former school teacher who loved reading. He filled it with books and put it on a post in his front yard. His neighbors and friends loved it. He built several more and gave them away. Each one had a sign that said FREE BOOKS. The Museum hopes to feature books based on history, though we will allow any book to be placed there.

Our Little Free Library was built by Jason Surface, son of one of our volunteers. It is a miniature version of the 1880 Massey-Clark House, which is the home of the Matthews Heritage Museum.

What Others Are Saying

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Fantastic place”

The exhibits were interesting and the layout was great! Learned a lot about Matthews during the visit. A must go for anyone in the area!

Hugh N.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“A little slice of awesome”

A great place to take the kids to teach them some local history! This place is a little slice of awesome. We went on a free museum day and my kids loved it.

Nick C.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

“Thank you”

I appreciate all the efforts that Barb and her staff has done over the years. It’s just an honor knowing that my great great grandfather was an important figure in this town. My mother would have been proud.

Kevin F.

Museum Shop

Matthews Remembered DVD

Narrated by long time Matthews residents, the Matthews Remembered DVD, ©2013, features wonderful stories and fond memories of Matthews in the 1930s, 40s, and 50s. Included on this DVD is a 10 minute Outen Pottery narrative. $15.00

Matthews Memories Cookbook

Matthews Memories, A Collection of Remembrances and Recipes from a Small Southern Town features 133 pages of stories and recipes with over 40 photos from early and contemporary Matthews cooks and kitchens. The stories reminisce about the cooks and their recipes from early and contemporary Matthews kitchens. Included are references to early Matthews and local southern dishes, such as Creecy Greens. All proceeds from the sale of this book directly benefit Matthews restoration projects. $21.95

Commemorative Bricks

Purchasing an inscribed brick is a permanent way to honor or remember a loved one, celebrate an important date, recognize an organization, or contribute to the Massey-Clark House Restoration Project. All donations are tax deductible. Personalized bricks are displayed in a walkway at the Matthews Heritage Museum entrance. Print brick order form here.