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The Lewes Historical Society offers permanent and rotating exhibitions throughout the year in various museum locations.

Current exhibitions:

lewes majesticBreaking Britannia’s Grasp: Lewes, the Royal Navy and the Legacy of 1812, located at the Cannonball House on 118 Front Street. This permanent exhibition is the first of its kind and provides a dual interpretation of the bombardment of Lewes by a British Naval Fleet on April 6th and 7th in 1813. This family-appropriate exhibition delves into the lives of both the sailors aboard the British ships and the actions of Lewes citizens who bravely fought to defend their homes in Lewistown.

“Breaking Britannia’s Grasp” is operating on winter hours and is open to the public on Thursdays through Saturdays from 10 am to 4 pm. Admission is $5 per person (children 12 and under are free). Tickets purchased for this exhibition will also allow visitors free access, for the day, at all other Lewes Historical Society properties, including the Lewes History Museum. Tickets can be purchased at the Cannonball House located at 118 Front Street, the Ryves Holt House, the Lewes History Museum, or the LHS Museum Store and Information Center.

Opening on Friday, February 12th, 2021:

17men1‘Seventeen Men: Portraits of Black Civil War Soldiers’ will celebrate the research and artwork of Michigan-based medical illustrator and genealogist Shayne Davidson. Born of a surviving, palm-size 1860s photo album documenting soldiers from the Mid-Atlantic region who served Union Captain William A. Prickitt (now in the collection of the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C.), ‘Seventeen Men’ will once again bring these nearly forgotten figures to almost life scale proportions via Ms. Davidson’s hand.

Portraits will be accompanied by a scholarly biography that identifies the complexities of each man’s life before, during, and after the Civil War. This is a particularly appropriate exhibition for the Lewes Historical Society, as six of the seventeen soldiers came from this region of Delaware, and without a doubt, walked the streets of Lewes.

"Seventeen Men: Portraits of Black Civil War Soldiers" will open at the Lewes History Museum, located at 101 Adams Avenue, Lewes, on Friday, February 12th, 2021, at 6 p.m.


Opening on Friday, December 3rd, 2021 at 10 a.m.

Boy, Man, Hero: Jacob Jones - Lewes' Own opening at the Ryves Holt House, 218 Second Street, Lewes, DE 19958  -Jacob Jones was born in Smyrna, Delaware but lived in the Ryves jacob jones smHolt House for much of his formative years, with the town of Lewes having a dramatic early impact on raising a future naval hero.

This Exhibition will highlight three periods of Jones'  life, focusing on his upbringing in Lewes, his rising naval career, and the legacy of his life and service. Space is limited, we ask for your patience is allowing everyone to view this special exhibit in a safe and fulfilling way.


Boy, Man Hero: Jacob Jones will open at the Ryves Holt House located at 218 Second Street, Lewes, on Friday, December 3rd at 10 a.m.