WELCOME TO THE MATHER HOMESTEAD

 

The Mather Homestead of Darien, Connecticut was built in 1778 and owned by the Mather family through seven generations, until 2017 when it was donated to The Mather Homestead Foundation thanks to the generosity of the McPherson family.  The home is rich in history and open for public enjoyment and education. The Foundation recently completed a new "barn," the Elizabeth W. Chilton Education Center, which will enable the Foundation to reach its vision of becoming a preeminent center for historical education in Fairfield.  Come visit us!

The Mather Homestead Foundation, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, oversees the Mather Homestead.  

Mission:  

The Mather Homestead Foundation is dedicated to the preservation of the Mather House as a treasured historical place for education and enjoyment.  

 

ANNUAL FUND - please support the Homestead! 
Thank you for helping us bring History to Life!

We are so appreciative of the many gifts we received for the new Mather Homestead barn, the Elizabeth W. Chilton Education Center.  Thanks to all who helped us "raise the roof"!  Our new barn is already enabling us to expand our programming and educational opportunities.  

 

Now we turn our attention to the Annual Fund which provides for the ongoing preservation and maintenance of the Homestead and the funding of our educational programs. 85% of our budget comes from individual donations. In short, YOU enable us to keep our doors open and run our programs!

 

We hope you will consider a gift to help us bring "History to Life" at this historic town treasure.   Click here to donate.   

 

UPCOMING EVENTS

Santa is coming to the Homestead!  Drive through visit.

Saturday, December 19, 12 to 2 pm

 

Santa will be at the Homestead for a drive through visit!  Each child will receive a stocking filled with traditional colonial toys and treats from Santa -- nothing electronic!  

Our elves need time to make the gifts!  So please sign up soon to secure your spot.  ​Let us know the ages of your children so we can make sure they get just the right age-appropriate toys.

$45 per child.  Custom Mather Homestead puzzle $30 (thank you Darien resident Diana Galik for the artwork!)

Music at Mather:  Con Fuoco String Quartet

Sunday, December 13, 4 pm

 

Back by popular demand, the Con Fuoco String Quartet will return to the Mather Homestead Barn for a holiday concert.  These accomplished young musicians, Ari Matsushita, Kay McIlhenny, Josh Bustamente and Ami Matsushita, will perform an hour long program to be announced shortly.  

Our plan is to have the concert inside the barn with socially distanced groupings.  Mask please!  

Tickets $35 each/$25 members -- beverages will be provided.

Please consider supporting our music series by becoming a patron of our event!  

Mixologist Derek Brown Comes (Virtually) to the Homestead
Thursday, January 30, 7 pm

 

We welcome Derek Brown, writer, mixologist and expert on the history and culture of spirits and drinks, for a virtual cocktail hour discussion.  His book, Spirits Sugar Water Bitters: How the Cocktail Conquered the World, tells the story of the cocktail, "the only American invention as perfect as the sonnet," according to H.L. Mencken.  We highly recommend you listen in advance to his 6 minute NPR interview “Ever Wonder What Cocktails the Founding Fathers Enjoyed”. Spoiler alert, they liked them all!  They drank wine, beer and spirits — an average of 7 gallons of pure alcohol per year — they didn’t drink water which often contained dangerous parasites.

Derek is known to be not only a great mixologist, but a great speaker.  

Oh ... and Playboy magazine named him as one of "The 10 Entertainers, Thought Leaders and Heroes Who'll Save Us in 2017."  Maybe he’ll save us in 2021!  

Stay tuned for tickets ... 

Music at Mather:  Petting Zoo!  POSTPONED DUE TO COVID CONCERNS ... STAY TUNED FOR NEW DATE ...
Petting Zoo is a rock band based out of Norwalk, CT. Members include Zack Ely, Bennett Newman, Colin Berger, Joe Wen, and DEEGAN. They released their first self-titled EP in October 2020, available on Spotify, Apple Music, and all other major streaming platforms. Be sure to check it out and give them a follow!
This concert will be OUTSIDE so BUNDLE UP and byo beverage.  
$25 per person. 
Yoga 🧘 at the Homestead
Wednesdays, Saturdays and now MONDAYS by popular demand!
Late fall session classes now available
Join us for a vinyasa flow class in the beautiful Mather Homestead barn led by instructor Mary Ann Freeman. This class is designed to make you feel lighter, longer and stronger!  Geared for all levels, whether you are new to yoga or have a practice already.  We will move through a creative sequence of foundational poses, emphasizing alignment and breathing techniques.  BYO mat and water.  $200 for series of ten classes.  Jan-March Classes Now Available.
Scholars Lectures
Scholars coming in April and May
Scholars will visit the Homestead this Spring for what we hope we be a LIVE discussion.  Our scheduled scholars include Victoria Johnson, scheduled to speak on April 8, and Dr. Lindsay Chervinsky, scheduled to speak on May 6.  
Johnson's book, American Eden, was a finalist for the 2019 Pulitzer Prize in History.  It tells the legacy of Dr. David Hosack who tilled the country's first public botanical garden in the Manhattan soil more than two hundred years ago, altering the NY landscape and leaving a monumental legacy of advocacy for public health and support for the sciences.
Dr. Chervinsky is an expert on the presidency, the cabinet, and government institutions.  She is currently a Scholar in Residence at the Institute for Thomas Paine Studies at Iona College and Senior Fellor at the International Center for Jefferson Studies.  She's the author of the award-winning The Cabinet:  George Washington and the Creation of an American Institution, published in 2020. 

FRESH OFF THE PRESS!

From the desk of Donn Smith: new blogs posted 

Docent Donn Smith has been busy poking around the attic of the Mather Homestead and he's found treasures abound! Check out his blogs which document his findings including artifacts fro 250 years of American life - a bible from 1743, a girl's dress from the 1860's, Stephen Mather's camera and more.  Oh the stories they tell!  Read up.  

BECOME A DOCENT!

Calling all history lovers!

 

Do you love history?  Do you love sharing history with others?  We are eager to train new docents to join our all star cast which includes Gordon Hastings, Donn Smith, and Nina and Dave Miller. Please contact us if you are interested in getting involved!  Tour groups include school aged children and adults.   

Gordon Hastings giving a tour to a very young history buff!

CHECK OUT OUR VIDEO

The Story of the Mather Homestead

 

This video was "premiered" at our recent Barnraiser event.  It tells the story of the Mather Homestead from 1778 to present. 

Thank you Pablo Villa, Allie Bernene, Gordon Hastings, the McPherson sisters, Penny Rashin and all who brought this story to life!  

THE MATHER HOMESTEAD LAUNCHES MEMBERSHIP PROGRAM

Become a Member!

Become a Member of the Homestead for benefits and also to support our mission:

To preserve the Mather Homestead in order to educate the community about Revolutionary times, eighteenth and nineteenth century living, and Stephen Mather’s legacy as an important conservationist and the founder of our modern National Parks System. 

Click here for more information on membership

© 2017 by The Mather Homestead Foundation. 

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19 Stephen Mather Road, Darien, CT  06820

Mailing address:  PO Box 1054, Darien, CT  06820

info@matherhomestead.org, 203-202-7602

"He laid the foundation of the National Park Service, defining and establishing the policies under which its areas shall be

developed and conserved unimpaired for future generations. There will never come an end to the good that he has done."            

-Louis C. Cramton, referring to Stephen T. Mather (1867-1930)