Try These 5 Morris County Museums (Plus Our Favorite Exhibits!)
Morris County, New Jersey is home to hundreds of must-see locations that are a part of important New Jersey history. The county plays host to so many museums that display artwork, crafts, jewelry and more that represent this history. With all these opportunities for adventure at your fingertips, it’s time to take your family on a tour of Morris County museums. As an insider tip, we’ve compiled a list of our absolute favorites. Each of these wonderful museums is practicing social distancing and established detailed Covid-19 rules to ensure the safety and health of the guests. Get to know the history of your community at these five can’t-miss museums and their unique exhibits and exhibitions.
#1: Morris Museum
As one of the longest actively running museums in the state, the Morris Museum is the second largest museum in the state and a great spot for those lovers of art, sound and motion.
One of the most unique and exciting exhibitions available to curious visitors is the Threads of Consciousness: The Tapestries of Jon Eric Riis display. Jon Eric Riis is an internationally acclaimed contemporary tapestry artist. His opulent work is made of woven silk and metallic thread, often embellished with pearls, gemstone beads, and crystals. Art history, religion, non-western cultures, and topical issues are his sources of inspiration for the handwoven narratives on display at the museum. There are over 60 works on view. It includes large-scale mythological tapestry panels, archetypal coat and robe forms, and experimental anatomical tapestry strips.
In 2019, this museum became the only Smithsonian Affiliate in New Jersey. It is open on Saturdays and Sundays, from 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. and entry is $12 for adults and $8 for children.
#2: Museum of Early Trades & Crafts
Located in Madison, New Jersey, in Morris County, this is a non-profit museum that explores American history through the technology of 18th and 19th-century craftsmen and artisans. With a mission to share the past to encourage imagining a bright future, there is much to see. As a result, you can dive into the many exhibits about New Jersey and explore the daily lives of the people who lived and worked here from the colonial era through the age of industrialization.
The most recent addition is the Cholera to Covid-19: Epidemics, Pandemics & Disease exhibition. In this display, you can examine the resources, tools, and techniques that were used to diagnose and treat patients during historic outbreaks of various illnesses. Therefore, the goal of the exhibit is to reveal the pervasive impact disease had upon daily life. Ultimately, it shows us how resilient Americans were throughout instances of widespread illness and how we continue to persevere.
METC is open for walk-in visits Tuesdays through Fridays. You will need reservations for Saturday and Sunday tours. Entry is $5 for adults and $3 for children.
#3: Macculloch Hall Historical Museum
In the heart of Morristown, one of the most historically significant towns in New Jersey, you can walk the exhibits of Macculloch Hall. At this museum, an 1810 historical house, you can wander from room to room exploring the galleries and gardens that reflect the time. It is also the home to the nation’s largest collection of original artwork by 19th-century political cartoonist Thomas Nast.
Our favorite exhibit, in particular, is the display of W. Parsons Todd’s collection. His collection boasts fine, rare, and interesting examples of art starting in the 1950s. It includes porcelain, carpets, textiles, furniture, glass, and silver, as well as oil paintings and works on paper. Each piece speaks to aspects of American history, the American presidency, and life on the sea. Additionally, it includes heirlooms of the generations of the Macculloch-Miller family. This historic family occupied the house from 1810 until Todd bought it in 1949.
Macculloch Hall is open by appointment for tours of the galleries for groups of 5 or less. Contact Patricia Pongracz, Executive Director, at [email protected] or call 973-538-2404, ext. 11 to schedule an appointment. Masks are required. Restrooms are closed to the public. Entry is $8 for adults and $4 for children.
#4: Morris County Historical Society at Acorn Hall
This historical mansion was built in 1853 and stands as a testament to the preservation and promotion of Morris County’s rich history. The Society operates Acorn Hall as a historic house museum, produces exhibitions on local history, and provides public programming on Morris County history.
One of the newest and most interesting exhibits on this list is Cut From Different Cloth: Material Gains in Women’s Opportunities, 1870 to 1930. This exhibit showcases the changes made from the radical increase in women’s employment during this time period. Developments in education, industrialization, and new technologies during this time allowed women to enter the workforce and develop their own skills and niches in every industry. So, you can tour this history of women’s empowerment in our country.
Morris County Historical Society at Acorn Hall’s exhibit galleries are open for walk-ins on Wednesdays, Thursdays, and Sundays or by appointment. 11:00 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tuesdays through Thursdays, and 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Sundays. Entry is $6 for adults and children enter for free!
#5: Imagine That Museum
Located in Florham Park, New Jersey, this museum is the most kid-friendly out of these Morris County museums. In fact, this children’s museum has endless exhibits and hands-on activities for the family to enjoy together. With new events offered every week, check the museum’s calendar for events your little ones will enjoy.
An unbeatable favorite is the pirate’s ship exhibit in the middle of the museum. Your children can dress up as pirates and fish off the side of the boat! There is also a firetruck station, pizza making classes, a music room, a castle jungle gym, and more. With so many options, your family will spend hours playing and learning. Learning-focused play is the goal of this museum for preschoolers and young children.
The museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Entry is $6.99 per adult and $15.99 per child.
Learn the History & Culture of Morris County, NJ
These are five fantastic options for adults and families who want to learn and have fun together. Explore the history and culture of New Jersey at these Morris County museums. Learn more about other opportunities to engage with the Morris County community with Morris Tourism.