The Metz is our main indoor exhibit space. It can seat up to 85 people and is the venue for meetings, lectures,
wedding parties and other functions.
The Camera Exhibit
New in 2014 is a display of more than 200 vintage cameras, mostly Kodaks, collected by Charles Whaley, dating
from the 1880s to the 1980s. The display will be augmented from time to time and will be up for at least two years.
It includes the first Kodak roll, a 1895 Pocket Kodak; a 1907 Panoramic camera; a 1901 Anthony & Scovill that used
Eastman dry-plate film; autographic cameras from 1914 to 1936; folding cameras from 1898 to 1958, movie cameras
from 1932 to 1968; 35 MMs from 1937 to 1989; twin lens reflex cameras from 1947 to 1964, along with several Kodak
advertisements and promotional material.
The General Store
In the old days, the General Store sold a wide variety of goods for all kinds of people. This one-stop shopping was a
must for country folk, whose transportation was either by horse-and-buggy or on foot. Items a shopper might want
to pick up included freshly ground coffee (above, left), thread of precisely the right color (center) or even their mail
(right). The store includes a large desk, a cash register and other objects from Kenyon's Department Store on Main
Street, Wakefield, once a large part of South County commerce.
Our kitchen includes some things any 19th-century home might have had, such as frying pans and butter churns,
and some things that only wealthier households could afford, such as fancy dinnerware, an indoor pump for the sink
and the massive iron stove pictured above, at the left. The fence that long limited access to the kitchen has been
removed beginning in the 2016 season. Everything in the exhibit is now either childproof or protected.
This impressive collection of headwear and hat boxes was donated by the Metz family in memory of William D. and
Native American Artifacts
A collection nearly of 1,400 Native American arrowheads was acquired at a 2013 auction in upstate New York by
Bernie Gould, a member of the Museum's board of directors, and donated to the Museum. The arrowheads, along
with stone knives, points, and scrapes, were from the Salt Pond pre-contact site, dating from about 1250 A.D. The
exhibit also includes local Indian stone hand tools, including hammer, hoes and grinders, along with a ceremonial
war bonnet. In addition to Gould, contributors included the Roger Williams Park Museum, J. E. Bacon, T. G. Hazard
Jr., and Mrs. E. L. Nock.
Please Touch Me
Many museums have "Do Not Touch" signs all over the place. But in the Metz Exhibit Hall, most of the things we
don't want touched can't be touched — they're in display cases. And at the west end of the Metz, in the children's
play area, a sign says, "Please touch me." You'll find there a lot of things that were very useful to our grandparents
and to their grandparents, along with quite a few gimcracks and doodads. They are all eminently touchable.
The Children's Corner
This part of the Please Touch section offers a plethora of dolls, toys and other stuff, all under the metallic gaze of the Tin Man.
The Colonial Room
The Colonial Room features a large fireplace. For the bed at left, the mattressis supported byropes that have to be
fastened tightly for comfort, the origin of the phrase, "sleep tight." And, at right, is a bench that is cleverly designed
to convert to a table.
© South County Museum 2016
P.O. Box 709, Narragansett, RI 02882