There's History Everywhere on Nantucket

This small post-and-beam building is the nation’s second-oldest church structure still standing and was built by free African Americans for their use.  The African Meeting House, and adjacent Seneca Boston-Florence Higginbotham House, are the only public structures remaining on the island that are identifiably central to the African American community’s 18th and 19th-century American history. The first Africans on Nantucket were slaves, but when slavery was abolished on the Island in 1773, they became vital contributors to the community as whalers, tradesmen, barbers and clergy.

Renovated in 2005, the Whaling Museum includes a fully-restored 1847 spermaceti candle factory, a forty-six foot sperm whale skeleton and top-quality exhibition halls displaying hundreds of  artifacts, including a world-class collection of scrimshaw, paintings, furniture, lightship baskets, samplers and clothing. Visitors can also climb the grand stairwell to the rooftop observation deck for a one-of-a-kind view of Nantucket harbor.

Renovated in 2005, the Whaling Museum includes a fully-restored 1847 spermaceti candle factory, a forty-six foot sperm whale skeleton and top-quality exhibition halls displaying hundreds of  artifacts, including a world-class collection of scrimshaw, paintings, furniture, lightship baskets, samplers and clothing. Visitors can also climb the grand stairwell to the rooftop observation deck for a one-of-a-kind view of Nantucket harbor.

The Jethro Coffin House is the oldest island residence retaining its original foundation.  It dates to the period of Nantucket’s first European settlement. A period kitchen garden is located behind the property and features a wide array of plantings, recreating what would have been common in the 1700s.

Built in 1746 this mill is the oldest functioning mill in the country! It is a famous and often photographed Nantucket landmark and interesting to visit.

During the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the men of the United States Lifesaving Service performed hundreds of rescues off the coast of Nantucket. Learn about their selfless acts of courage and the Island’s maritime history at the recently renovated Shipwreck & Lifesaving Museum. The museum’s grounds offer breathtaking views of Folger’s Marsh and are ideal for picnicking.

The historic Coffin School was founded in 1827 by Admiral Sir Isaac Coffin, an English baronet who intended to provide “a good English education to youth who are descendents of the late Tristram Coffin” (almost every child on Nantucket), including nautical training for Island boys. Currently, the Coffin School welcomes visitors to experience educational and entertaining speaker programs that explore topics related to Nantucket’s maritime traditions,  culture and history, in addition to showing classic maritime movies in July and August.

The rich heritage of the lightship basket reflects the spirit and creative spark of the people who made them and inspires the work of those who keep the art alive today. Today, the lightship basket is recognized internationally as a Nantucket icon. Both annual and permanent exhibits, guest speakers, weaving demonstrations and tours of the 1820s-era garden are offered throughout the season.

The Nantucket Atheneum is one of the oldest public libraries in continuous service in the United States. Once attracting prominent 19th century speakers – including Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, Lucretia Mott and Frederick Douglas – the Great Hall on the second floor now serves as a free research and information area with reference books and public access computers. The Weezie Library for Children offers year-round programs, including storytelling, music, puppet shows and Family Nights, and features a vibrant selection of material for Island youth. The adjoining Atheneum Garden provides a welcome downtown green space for relaxing, playing or quiet reading.

Maria Mitchell, America’s first female astronomer, was born and raised on Nantucket Island. From a telescope placed atop the Pacific National Bank, she sighted the comet that brought her international fame. The Maria Mitchell Association educates adults and children in astronomy, environmental science and Island history through various programs and facilities.

Located on Nantucket Harbor, the Aquarium is “cozy” and exhibits Nantucket marine life. It also offers ecology and beach discovery field trips for families with younger children.

The Winnetu on Instagram

Wading into the weekend 📸: @bosfashionista
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Local beer with a local view. Come join us on the @thedunesmv deck for our fall menu and views over South Beach, Tues-Sat.
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Sailing into fall. Happy first day of autumn from Martha’s Vineyard 📸: @theryanpatrick
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Those who know, know that September is glorious on Martha’s Vineyard. Come explore with us in #Katama this fall 📸: @bosfashionista
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September views from the Winnetu 📸: @dania_alyse
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Summer lingers on with oysters plucked right from Katama Bay by @signatureoysterfarm. Book a BYOB Oyster tour with Signature Oysters when you’re with us next 📸: @shorelinesillustrated
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September doesn’t mean that summer is over! Tap the link in our bio to learn about our summer offerings offered this September 📸: @topflightfamily
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Now serving: @thewhisperingangel & fresh Katama Bay oysters from our friends at @signatureoysterfarm. Stop by @thedunesmv and experience a little Katama luxury
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Looking to explore the island by Jeep? Ask about our on-site rentals through @mvautorental. Enjoy pick up and drop off your rental right at the Winnetu 📸: @whatsupmv
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Summer later with us this September. Tap the link in our bio to learn about what’s happening around the hotel during this spectacular month on-island
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Book an Arrive & Drive package and we’ll arrange to have your rental vehicle waiting for you at the ferry dock. Tap the link in our bio to learn more 📸: @homewiththewileys
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Being the only hotel on Katama Bay, we’re neighbors with some of the finest oyster farming in the world. Our partnership with @signatureoysterfarm provides us with fresh oysters farmed by husband and wife team Ryan and Julia Smith, straight out of Katama Bay and delivered right to our back door and onto your plate (or cocktail!) at @thedunesmv.
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Congrats to @mpappag, the latest winner of our #MyVintageSummer series! Her vintage summer photo stirred our Timeless Summer heartstrings and captured the essence of a day of adventures under the sun. If you have a vintage family photo that you think will do the same, share it with us and you might win a Winnetu vacation (or one with our sister resort, @thenantucket). Tap the link in our bio to learn more, and happy summering!
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Leave your car on the mainland and take advantage of our Arrive & Drive option. We’ll arrange to have a rental Jeep, Mini Cooper, or one of several other options waiting for you at the ferry when you arrive! 📸: @mrsnipple_
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What’s your island ride? This is one of ours. 📸: @homewiththewileys
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Every day feels like the weekend here in Katama 📸: @mrsnipple_
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Congratulations to our third #MyVintageSummer winner, Laurie Donahue, whose vintage family summer photograph we used to create this poster for our 2020 Season.
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Laurie’s photo captures exactly the kind of summertime energy we’re channeling to make this summer just as memorable as summers that came before it.
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If you’ve got a photo you’d like to submit for a chance to win a two night stay with us or our sister resort @thenantucket, tap the link in our bio to learn more.
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Winnetu gang’s all here for our impromptu 4th of July parade 🇺🇸
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Keeping you cool with a specialty cocktail this 4th of July. See you at the pool!
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Our new executive chef, Colin Coyle is bringing summer to life dish by dish this season. Join us for a summery dinner on our deck or in one of our private cabanas 📸: @caitlinhoustonblog
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Summer’s here and it feels so good! Tell us what you’re most excited about doing on-island this summer in the comments!
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Looking for a way to commemorate a special occasion? We’re offering private poolside dining in our cabanas this season. Enjoy the evening atmosphere with a party of up to four in memorable land summer-y setting. 📸: @candidlydeena
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Sailing into summer views with this gorgeous shot by @vineyardlights. What iconic Vineyard sights get you excited for a trip out to the island? 📸: @vineyardlights
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