Montpelier – The General Henry Knox Museum

Thomaston
ME

The rebuilt Henry and Lucy Knox mansion

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Built in 1794, Montpelier was constructed as the retirement home of Henry and Lucy Knox, and was in use by the family until 1854; it was razed in 1871.

The current Montpelier is a recreation built in 1930 and includes some of Knox’s personal effects.

Associated People

Charles Willson Peale, despite his devotion to the taxonomic and contemplative majesty of the natural world, nevertheless loved novelties and used all sorts of amusements to attract customers to his museum. He eventually resorted to hiring a popular musical performer who played five different instruments simultaneously, using all parts of his body. Following Peale’s death the museum passed into the enterprising hands of P. T. Barnum, becoming part of his traveling circus — a romantic ending for an Enlightenment institution.

Gordon S. Wood
Empire of Liberty: A History of the Early Republic, 1789–1815 (2009)