You don’t have to be an astronaut to explore the mysterious and the unknown. Instead, imagine yourself in Salem in the 1600s, when navigating the high seas was as dangerous and challenging as going to the moon. All are invited to The House of the Seven Gables for the first in a series of intriguing “17th Century Saturday” events when visitors are asked to transport back to a different Salem, one where GPS and maps were not yet available to trader/explorers. In “Arts and Mysteries Revealed: Navigation Skills,” scheduled for Saturday, August 3, visitors will get a chance to investigate how our earliest traders found their way around the world. 17th Century Saturdays will be held on the first Saturday of each month — August 3, September 7, October 5 and November 2. They will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and are included with the price of admission, and each will present a new mystery to explore. 17th Century Saturday offerings are scheduled throughout Essex County at First Period (1625–1725) sites like The House of the Seven Gables. The schedule for special 17th Century Saturday events at The Gables is as follows:
August 3, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arts & Mysteries Revealed: Navigation Skills
September 7, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arts & Mysteries Revealed: Historical Carpentry - Educator Mike Welch conducts a fun and informative exploration of the tools and techniques of woodworking during the 18th century.
October 5, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arts & Mysteries Revealed: Colonial Food Preservation - Making food last before refrigeration was a challenge and a skill. Visitors are invited to lend a hand to some colonial preservation techniques, such as butter-making, salting and sugaring.
November 2, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Arts & Mysteries Revealed: A Sailor’s Life & Hornworking - Join two outstanding educators as they demonstrate labors of 18th century. Mike Welch will sing a sea shanties and describe the lives of colonial sailors. Chuck Walker will share the wonders of horn. This staple material was used throughout the colonial period to make spoons, powder-horns, combs and more. In addition, The Gables plans a host of activities on 17th Century Saturdays including guided tours of the 1668 Turner-Ingersoll Mansion, Living History Labs in the 1682 Hooper-Hathaway House, shopping for gifts unique to The Gables in the Museum Store, located in the c. 1655 Retire Beckett House, a chance to relax and enjoy the seaside views in the gardens as well as explore The Gables’ exhibition, “Pop! Goes The Gables.” For more information about 17th Century Saturday events around the region, those interested may visit www.northofboston.org.