The holidays are a great time to explore Newport’s early history, whether on foot, during a special event or by chatting with costumed interpreters. This season the Newport Historical Society will present a diverse selection of programs ranging from a revival of a popular local tradition at the annual Holiday Open House, an author talk and a holiday-themed living history event along with a series of walking tours like the Holiday Lantern Tour.

Holiday Lantern Tour

November 25 & 26, 2016 at 4pm

December 2, 3; 9, 10; 16, 17; 23; 30, 2016 at 4pm

Hear the history of early American holiday traditions on an evening walk and learn how colonial Newporters recognized the holidays. Departs from the Brick Market: Museum & Shop, 127 Thames Street, Newport, RI, and costs $15 per person. The $25 ticket includes a historic-style hurricane lantern with a flameless candle to use during the tour. Reservations encouraged, space is limited. 401-841-8770.

Discover Colonial Newport Tour

Saturdays in November and December at 10:30am

Hear stories of entrepreneurship, African American heritage and religious diversity during Newport’s colonial period. Departs from the Brick Market: Museum & Shop, 127 Thames Street, Newport, RI, and costs $15 per person. Presented by Newport History Tours.

Golden to Gilded Tour

Sundays in November at 10:30am

December 4, 11 and 18, 2016 at 10:30am

From Newport’s colonial Golden Age to Gilded Age summer colony, discover the transformation of the city and its people. Departs from the Brick Market: Museum & Shop, 127 Thames Street, Newport, RI, and costs $15 per person. Presented by Newport History Tours.

Rogues & Scoundrels Tour

Mondays and Fridays in November and December at 10:30am

See where scoundrels lived, pirates profited and criminals were punished. Find out why this colony was known as “Rogue’s Island.” Departs from the Brick Market: Museum & Shop, 127 Thames Street, Newport, RI, and costs $15 per person. Presented by Newport History Tours.

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Newport Historical Society’s Holiday Open House

Thursday December 1, 2016 4pm-6pm

Visit the 1739 Colony House before Christmas in Newport’s opening ceremony. Join a revival of a Newport holiday tradition, a reading of the 1957 children’s novel The Christmas Tree Hessian. This tale by Cora Cheney explores life and Christmas in Revolutionary War-era Newport thorough a child’s eyes. Presented in partnership with the Newport Restoration Foundation. Admission is free, donations welcome.

Common Burying Ground Walking Tour

Saturday December 3, 2016 at 11am

Explore the Common Burying Ground. Learn about the stone carvers, their art and the diverse people buried there who helped shape Newport’s history. Departs from the Brick Market: Museum & Shop, 127 Thames Street, Newport, RI, and costs $15 per person. Presented by Newport History Tours.

The Launch of Rhode Island’s Revolutionary Artillery

Thursday December 8, 2016 at 5:30pm

J.L. Bell, author of The Road to Concord: How Four Stolen Cannon Ignited the Revolutionary War, will discuss how Rhode Island’s artillerists became one of the most respected units of the Continental Army during the Revolutionary War. This talk takes place at the Newport Historical Society, 82 Touro Street, Newport, RI. Reservations requested, please call 401-841-8770. General admission costs $5, $1 for Society members and military with ID.

Christmas with the Whitehornes

December 10, 2016 from 10am-2pm

Experience 1813 Christmas festivities at the Whitehorne House. Meet costumed interpreters portraying members of the Whitehorne family as they prepare for the Christmas season. Learn about the differences between holiday celebrations past and present, from decorations to dining and even Christmas trees. Attendees will receive authentic recipes from Mrs. Whitehorne’s own Sugar House Book. Presented in partnership with the Newport Restoration Foundation. Tickets cost $8 for adults, $5 for Newport Historical Society Members and active duty military with ID, children under the age of 18 are free.

For additional event details visit NewportHistory.org, NewportHistoryTours.org or NewportRestoration.org.

About the Newport Historical Society

Since 1854, the Newport Historical Society has collected and preserved the artifacts, photographs, documents, publications, and genealogical records that relate to the history of Newport County, to make these materials readily available for both research and enjoyment, and to act as a resource center for the education of the public about the history of Newport County, so that knowledge of the past may contribute to a fuller understanding of the present. For more information please visit www.NewportHistory.org.

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Ryan Belmore has been the Owner & Publisher of What's Up Newp since 2012. He also currently works for Mountain News, where he serves as Senior Editor - North America for OnTheSnow. He previously worked for the New England Patriots and American Cancer Society. He currently serves as Vice President of Fort Adams Trust and is a member of Local Independent Online News (LION) Publishers and North American Snowsports Journalists Association (NASJA).