Exploring the state of Massachusetts sounds like a daunting undertaking, but it can be a lot of fun. This winter day trip exploring Haverhill, MA includes three stops starting with the Museum of Printing, then to Haverhill House of Pizza for a couple of slices, and then catching sunset at Winnekenni Castle.

For those that are interested in print, graphic design, typesetting, engineering, or machinery the Museum of Printing is a location filled with intrigue and knowledge. Frank Romano is the expert here, with a career in the printing and publishing industries spanning over 50 years, not to mention an author of 40 books, and contributor to major encyclopedias and dictionaries, just to name a few things.

The Museum, boasting that they have “the only collection of phototypesetting machines, fonts, and ephemera in the world,” consists of several galleries (two with rotating exhibits), two libraries (with over 7,000 books), and meeting and workshop areas, along with a shop. Features in the museum range from the hand-setting individual sorts of foundry type to mechanized hot-metal typesetting to electronically-driven phototypesetters and digitalized technology.

Some (if not all) of the displays are in working condition include Addressographs, Mimeographs, Graphotypes, an array of Linotype, Monotype and Ludlow linecasting machines, and a wall of typewriters. In normal times, you can make a certificate using various machines, from creating a metal stamp, going through the various layering processes, resulting in a mixed-font black and one color certificate with a decorative border. It was a pleasant surprise to still be able to make the metal stamp!

Sitting on a hill overlooking Lake Kenoza you can find a castle known as Winnekenni, which is a Algonquian Native American term for “very beautiful.” A chemist and agriculturist by name of Dr. James R. Nichols built this summer home from native boulders and rocks. Inspired by the long-standing stone structures he visited in Scotland and England, construction began in 1873 and took two years to complete. Due to the COIVD-19 pandemic there are no events planned and interior access is restricted, but the grounds are open during daylight hours.

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