The House of The Seven Gables

“Half-way down a by-street of one of our New England towns, stands a rusty wooden house, with seven acutely-peaked gables…” opens the House of the Seven Gables, a novel by Salem author Nathaniel Hawthorne. The 1668merchant’s mansion, built by the Turner family, that inspired that classic literary work in 1851 still stands on Salem Harbor. Hawthorne’s cousin, the independent businesswoman Susanna Ingersoll, owned the “ancient house” in the 1800s, and the writer used it as a setting to explore themes of privilege and generational trauma. Between1908 and 1910, philanthropist Caroline Emmerton transformed the house into a museum to fund a settlement association which to this day helps immigrants adjust to their new homes. Visitors can tour the old mansion and learn about its inhabitants, from the wealthy owners to the enslaved and indentured people who labored here or explore the picturesque gardens with other historic houses saved from elsewhere in Salem.

Skip to content