Matthews, North Carolina
Matthews Heritage Museum
“Where Children Experience… and Adults Remember”
The votes are in for the 2021 Best of The Weeklies Reader’s Choice Awards and once again the Matthews Heritage Museum has been voted the Best Museum in Matthews-Mint Hill!
Museum Now Open
The museum is now open during its regular hours of Thursday–Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Some changes have been put in place in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
- We are asking our patrons to wear masks and practice social distancing.
- We will also expect visitors to use provided hand sanitizer upon entering.
- We recommend you call to make a reservation: 704-708-4996.
- We are still providing guided tours and will have our guides positioned to stay 6 feet away from the group.
- We will allow drop in guests, if there are no other visitors in the museum.
What’s New at the Museum?
Currently on Display
North Carolina Pottery: A Tradition in Clay
Our newest exhibit will remain on display until August 28, 2021. The exhibit features pottery from several areas in the state known for their production including: the eastern Piedmont (Chatham County and the Seagrove area of Randolph, Moore and Montgomery Counties), the Catawba Valley (Catawba, Lincoln and Union Counties) and Buncombe County. Additionally, we will have pieces from Sanford, NC and Outen Pottery from Matthews, as well as some pieces from Catawba Native Americans.
North Carolina’s internationally renowned pottery tradition begins with native inhabitants forming local clay into functional pots and ceremonial vessels. European settlers in the eighteenth century brought their techniques from England, Germany and elsewhere to create utilitarian pieces to satisfy the demands of the local people who could not afford or did not have access to imported ceramics. When utilitarian pieces were no longer needed, inventive potters developed new forms and glazes and created a new market for art pottery.
This exhibit features both historical utilitarian pieces from the 19th century as well as contemporary art pottery from the 1980s to 2020! Among the potteries on display are B. B. Craig, Pisgah Forest, Cole Pottery, Crystal King, Jugtown, and Outen Pottery. A number of miniature pots and jugs, pumpkins and a giraffe, as well as a “pottery puzzle” are featured. It is a good opportunity to experience a wide variety of styles without having to travel across the state.
Can you help?
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. 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. The end result is to create a database of those who are buried there, as there are no records for the cemetery. When we have a relatively large data base, we will post to our web page (minus your personal contact information). If you know someone buried there, please send information to us at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also call 704-708-4996. Please help us create this important information.
Little Free Library
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
“A little slice of awesome”
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
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.