Located in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the Longfellow House is the former home of poet Henry W. Longfellow and served as headquarters to General George Washington during the Siege of Boston from 1775 to 1776. Visitors can wander the decorated halls of this Georgian mansion and learn about the dynamic Longfellow family.
At the Longfellow House, considered the best of the remaining Tory Row mansions on Brattle Street, visitors can learn about the impact of the Longfellow family on women’s education, as well as its early championing of the preservation of New England historical landmarks. The Longfellows hosted notable guests at the house including writers Nathaniel Hawthorne, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Anthony Trollope, and Julia Ward Howe. The site has a large collection of fine art, textiles, and old-world clothing, as well as documents, letters, and sheet music once owned by the family.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Longfellow House closes for half the year, but the grounds and historic garden are open to visitors year-round during daytime hours.
- The first floor of the home is wheelchair-accessible, but the basement and second and third floors are not.
- House tours require standing for long periods of time, walking through narrow spaces, and climbing stairs.
How to Get There
The Longfellow House is located at 105 Brattle Street in Cambridge. Via Boston’s public transit system (known as the T), take the Red Line toward Alewife and get off at the Harvard Square stop. At the intersection of Church and Brattle streets, turn right onto Brattle and walk about 10 minutes to reach the house.
When to Get There
The Longfellow House is only open to the public between Memorial Day and October, when drop-in guided tours are available Wednesday through Sunday, though private tours may be arranged in the off-season. The grounds and gardens are open year-round. On Saturdays during the summer, families can engage in free, hands-on history activities.
Harvard Museum of Natural History
Located on the grounds of Harvard University, the museum combines the school’s three major research museums: Harvard University Herbaria, the Museum of Comparative Zoology, and the Harvard Mineralogical Museum. Here, visitors—especially families with small children—can take part in a hands-on educational program, as well as admire exhibits of fossils, taxidermy animals, dinosaurs, and more.