Presidential Menagerie: The Coolidges and Their Pets. During the Coolidge presidency, the White House was home to a veritable menagerie of domestic animals including dogs, cats, and birds. President Coolidge also received exotic “pets” as gifts, including two lion cubs, a bear, a pygmy hippopotamus, and a wallaby. These animals quickly went to the national zoo in Washington, D.C. The one exception was Rebecca, a semi-domesticated raccoon, who remained at the White House as an honored member of the family.
Permanent Must-see Exhibts
In addition to the Coolidge Birthplace, Coolidge Homestead, Union Christian Church, Schoolhouse, and Plymouth Cemetery, please be sure to explore these permanent exhibits.
More than Two Words: The Life and Legacy of Calvin Coolidge - This national award-winning exhibit uses Calvin Coolidge’s own words, his personal and family items, artifacts from his presidential years, and state of the art interactive media to tell the story of how a boy from rural Plymouth Notch became the 30th President of the United States. The exhibit is located in the Calvin Coolidge Museum and Education Center.
From Break of Day 'til Twilight: Farm Life in Plymouth Notch: Located in the c. 1875 Wilder Barn that was once part of the Moor-Wilder Farm, this agricultural exhibit examines Vermont farm life at the turn of the 20th century. It features a premier collection of early agricultural equipment, some household items, and maple sugaring apparatus from Vermont. The items were collected by the State of Vermont in the mid-20th century with a focus on hillside farming.
Coolidge Farm Shop Exhibit: The farm shop exhibit, displayed in an c. 1870 building constructed by Colonel John Coolidge, is set up as a typical late-19th-century Vermont farmer's workshop, complete with all the tools necessary for the repair and maintenance of the farm's equipment. The collection includes tools for woodworking, blacksmithing, and the carriage-making equipment of W.C. Landon & Company from Rutland.
Say Vermont Cheese!: The exhibit on the second floor of the 1890 cheese factory recounts the story of cheesemaking in Vermont, focusing on the history of the distinctive granular-curd Plymouth Cheese. The factory was established by Colonel John Coolidge, the president’s father, along with James S. Brown and three other local farmers. Operations closed in 1934 but were reopened by John Coolidge, the president’s son, in 1960. On display are the original vats, presses, and other equipment of the Plymouth Cheese Factory, as well as impressive period pieces related to cheesemaking. The exhibit is presented in collaboration with Plymouth Artisan Cheese, which produces cheese today much like they did in 1890.
1924 Summer White House Office: The Coolidge Hall exhibit on the second floor of the Florence Cilley General Store tells the story of how this large hall was used for weekly dances, family reunions, Grange meetings, and other community events. The Hall is most famous for being President Coolidge's 1924 Summer White House office. Original furnishings including the desks made especially for the president's use that summer and the instruments of the "Plymouth Old Time Dance Orchestra" are on display.