Dunham Tavern Museum will be reopening to the public for tours on Wednesday, July 1. The safety of our staff, docents, and guests is our top priority and we will be implementing the following measures upon reopening:
- Masks are required for visitors, docents, and staff.
- Please sign in and use hand sanitizer provided upon entering the Museum.
- Because we offer docent-guided tours and visitors are asked to remain with the docent at all times, the amount of visitors permitted in the Museum will be limited to 5 people at a time. Docents may ask guests to stagger entry when viewing smaller rooms.
- All will be required to socially distance between themselves and members of other households.
- Our gardens and grounds provide ample space to move through and enjoy the property, but please respect social distancing outside as well.
- Staff will be regularly cleaning and sanitizing high-touch surfaces.
Regular public hours will still be Wednesday and Sunday, from 1:00 to 4:00 pm. We are excited to welcome you back to Dunham Tavern Museum! If you have questions or concerns, please contact us at (216) 431-1060.
To preserve, develop and share historic Dunham Tavern and its campus as an educational and cultural resource.
We aspire for Dunham Tavern as an institution to provide an urban green space in Midtown Cleveland, and to return the Tavern to its roots by serving as a place for urban history, education, nature, and community.
Rufus and Jane Pratt Dunham came to the Western Reserve in 1819. The young couple from Massachusetts acquired 13.75 acres of land, which they began to farm. A log cabin served as their home until the north portion of the present structure was built in 1824. Later, the main block of the home was added in front of the original wing and, as late as 1832, the west wing was built.
Capitalizing on the home’s position along a well-traveled stagecoach route, Rufus Dunham soon became a tavernkeeper as well as farmer. The Dunham Tavern became a social and political center for parties, turkey shoots and meetings of the Whig party. The Dunham’s sold the Tavern in 1853, but it continued to serve as a tavern until 1857 when a banker bought it for his home.
Amazingly, this residence stood through Euclid Avenue’s rise and fall. Stagecoach stops to car dealerships, Millionaire’s Row to urban renewal . . . Dunham Tavern has remained.
In the 1930s the Tavern served as studio space for a group of WPA artists and printmakers. The Society of Collectors, organized in the early 1930s, became interested in the historic site and eventually took responsibility for the structure, opening it to the public in 1941. Dunham Tavern is now a nonprofit museum supported by donations, members, grants, and monies raised from tours and outreach events.