Marblehead has a long and storied history. Numerous books describe the original native American inhabitants, colonial settlement by the English starting about 1629 and subsequent history as a fishing, shoe manufacturing, summer resort and yachting capital. Marbleheaders were instrumental in the founding of our country, playing important roles in the establishment of democracy and the Revolution. A summary of the Town’s history is available on the Town of Marblehead web site.
The Town is blessed with three harbors – the main harbor, “Little Harbor”, and Salem Harbor on the west shore – so it is little wonder that fishing was the original reason for Marblehead’s existence, and that the sea is integral with Marblehead’s identity.
Today, Marblehead has one of the finest concentrations of buildings from the 1600’s through the 1800’s in Massachusetts, if not the US. A “Walking Tour of Historic Marblehead”, available at Abbot Hall (or can be printed here) guides the visitor to see many of these historic structures and places.