The Rufus Porter Museum was founded in 2005 to celebrate the life of Rufus Porter (1792-1884), a painter, inventor, musician, and writer. The museum began by preserving and exhibiting Rufus Porter Style wall murals, and since has expanded to encompass Porter’s other accomplishments, and to promote the preservation of early 19th Century Maine and New England culture for future generations. We invite you to share in Porter's uniquely American blend of creativity, ingenuity, practicality, and energy by coming to explore Rufus Porter's era through the museum.
The museum's mission statement has been updated to reflect the goals outlined in our new five year plan. Click here to read the Strategic Business Plan, 2012-2015.
Our mission is to increase the enjoyment, knowledge and pride of our communities by bringing to life the world and inspiring works of Rufus Porter--- a remarkable American artist and inventor.
Want to learn more about what the museum has been up to over the winter months? Click here to read the latest newsletter and learn about the upcoming events for the 2013 season as well as the progress on the our new location at 121 Main Street in Bridgton and much much more.
The schedule for our annual Cultural Heritage Series is now complete. Click here to see the schedule and registration information. Full course descriptions and catalog will be available soon.
STATE OF MAINE CIVIL WAR TRAIL
In honor of the Maine men and women, who served in the Civil War and the 150th Anniversary of the Battle of Gettysburg, museums and historical societies across the state have come together and created a trail to commemorate Maine's participation in the war. Maine sent more men per capita to the war than any other northern state, along with numerous women. Participates in the Civil War Trail tell the stories of those Mainers through exhibits and special events. Travel the trail to Kennebunk, Castine, Bangor, Augusta, Livermore, Kingsfield, Bethel and of course Bridgton. The Rufus Porter Museum's 2013 Special Exhibit will feature folk art inspired by the Civil War. For more information on the Trail and other locations, visit www.mainecivilwartrail.org.
2012 Annual Appeal
Will you help us bring the world and inspiring works of Rufus Porter to life by donating to our first Annual Appeal? Rufus Porter symbolizes what was great in America in the early 19th century: an appreciation for the simple beauty of our surroundings and the optimism, vision, and practical ingenuity to improve life. Porter, who grew up in the Lakes Region, painted wall murals that celebrated the peace, prosperity, and industry of New England farms and villages. His many inventions included an automobile, an airplane, and a revolving rifle that became the Colt revolver. He founded the Scientific American magazine and wrote popular books to share what he had learned and to encourage others to “think big.” Our mission is to keep alive Rufus Porter’s unique American spirit of inventiveness, creativity, and enterprise and to inspire young and old to combine the arts and sciences to improve life in the 21st century.
To realize our mission we have to expand and improve our educational programs and exhibit space. In 2011 the Board of Directors dared to “think big” and decided to move the museum to the historic Webb house on Main Street, Bridgton. This move will preserve a town landmark, allow us more room to grow, and make us more visible and welcoming to our year-round and seasonal residents and visitors. We want to be a lively, fun, meeting place for our community. Our vision is to advance the economic renaissance of downtown Bridgton. We want to increase foot traffic and business on Main Street, we want to boost the reputation of the Lakes Region, and we want to make our community proud of its heritage.
We are doing something to improve life and we want you to join us. Our mission to inspire and our vision to contribute to our community’s economic well-being will take more funds. We managed to pay off the mortgage on the Webb house this year and we are writing grants for renovations. We would like to be in our new museum home next summer, but we need you. Your tax-deductible gift to our Annual Appeal will help us keep a balanced budget, develop inspiring science and art programs, and continue to invest in our community. Will you “think big” with us? To send in your donation by mail, please click here. Or click on the PayPal donation link on the side bar to the right.
Bonnie Trafford Andrea C. Hawkes
President, Board of Director Executive Director