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“How to tell if you get a counterfeit bill!”

Crane Museum of Papermaking
Ranked #1 of 4 things to do in Dalton
More attraction details
Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: With its rough-hewn oak beams, colonial chandeliers, many-paned windows and wide oak floorboards, the interior resembles the Old Ship Church in Hingham, Mass. In this appropriate setting, you will find a scale model (made by Dard Hunter) of the vat house of the first Crane mill, as well as some of the tools Zenas Crane used from 1801 to 1831. In wall and floor cases, exhibits trace the history of American papermaking from Revolutionary times, with special emphasis on the durable, distinctive Crane papers made for currency, bonds, stock certificates and elegant stationery. We have just opened our new Center for the Paper Arts. See how paper was mad in the old days. Make some paper yourself. Several cool art projects as well.
Useful Information: Wheelchair access, Baby buggy parking, Bathroom facilities, Activities for young children, Activities for older children
Brookline, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
48 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“How to tell if you get a counterfeit bill!”
Reviewed 19 August 2013

The Crane Museum of Papermaking is definitely tucked away in the Crane Paper Co. complex, but it's well worth seeking out. (If you land at the Crane Co. offices first, you can get printed directions to the museum from there.) Charles Wellspeak, the curator, greeted us and suggested we view a couple of videos first. We learned a great deal about the history of the company as well as all the security features of the new $100 bill. Exhibitions about the papermaking process were also informative. There were some wonderful artifacts on display including thank-you notes from Jackie Kennedy and Ethel Kennedy to folks sending them their sympathies on the deaths of JFK and RFK - printed on Crane stationery, of course. The museum is open only during the week, so it's not a weekend destination. In the little shop area, you can buy Crane goods at a discount.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
2 Thank ccsantos
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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58 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Liverpool, United Kingdom
Level Contributor
71 reviews
27 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 63 helpful votes
“Paper! Interesting?”
Reviewed 16 August 2013

We visited the Crane Museum of Papermaking as we knew that Crane provide paper for US dollar bills. We were greeted outside on a very warm late afternoon by one of the staff who was making paper outside! We were soon inside and learning about the history of Cranes and what goes into making paper. It really was very interesting, and I for one had no idea that a shortage of denim rags has affected the business as it makes very high quality paper. It seems that the fashion for "stretching" denim to hug the figure has meant that this material is not suitable. Anyone in Dalton should visit. It was a delightful hour enjoyed by all four of us.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
1 Thank Rod_B552
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Wrentham, Massachusetts, United States
Level Contributor
46 reviews
21 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“Fabulous little gem”
Reviewed 8 August 2013

We stopped by the museum as our last stop before home after Tanglewood on Parade. Our six children had a wonderful time learning about how paper was make, using the stamp machine and making their own piece of paper. We were there for about 2 hours just having fun, learning about not only how paper is made, but some really interesting information about our currency and how it is made. Stop you are in the area, you wont be sorry.

Visited August 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank DKSonic6
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Saint Louis, Missouri
Level Contributor
50 reviews
36 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 42 helpful votes
“Interesting if you are in the area”
Reviewed 5 August 2013

The Crane Museum is worth a stop only if you are in the area. It is hard to find as the streets are not marked well like the rest of the Berkshires. It is free and the volunteer who staffs it is very pleasant and full of information. They show you 2 DVDs regarding paper and money. The museum is small but has some demonstrations for kids.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank HikingT
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraneMuseum, General Manager at Crane Museum of Papermaking, responded to this review, 7 August 2013
Thanks so much; we're glad you enjoyed your visit.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stoneham, Massachusetts
Level Contributor
337 reviews
174 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 274 helpful votes
“Go!”
Reviewed 30 July 2013

My husband wanted to visit this museum. I expected to be bored, BUT it was fascinating. I have used tons of paper in my lifetime and have never known how it was made. I assumed that all paper came from trees. I also had no idea where our paper money came from. Our paper money and high quality invitation and note paper all come from cotton. In the early days it all came from rags.

All paper for United States paper currency has been made at the Crane Paper Company since 1879 when Winthrop Crane won the first contract from the Federal Government. For the past 134 years the government has purchased all paper on which it prints its currency from the Crane Paper Company. Other companies have tried and failed to replace them.

The curator is very interesting. I learned a great deal from the two videos we were shown. One was about the making of paper from cotton. The other was about all the security features that there will be in the new $100.00 bills that are coming out in October 2013.

I enjoyed the displays of the invitations that have been printed on paper made from cotton at the Crane factory.

The museum is completely free. There isn't even a box for donations. We spent about 90 minutes there.

Visited July 2013
Helpful?
3 Thank bcnett
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
CraneMuseum, Manager at Crane Museum of Papermaking, responded to this review, 1 August 2013
Thank you so much for posting. We hope your one-word review speaks volumes for potential visitors.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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