a little history

In the 1890s, Moody Currier, a former governor of the state of New Hampshire, and his wife, Hannah Slade, began making plans to found an art museum. Upon their deaths – he in 1898, she in 1915 – their estate formed the basis of the Currier Gallery of Art, which was chartered by the NH state legislature in 1919.

The museum building opened in October 1929, a few days before the great stock market crash ushered in the Great Depression. The museum’s community art school started in 1939.

In 1982, new galleries designed by Hardy Holzman Pfeiffer, an internationally recognized American architecture firm, opened. A new atrium and special exhibition galleries by renowned Boston-based architect Ann Beha were completed in 2008.

In the 1950s, the architect Frank Lloyd Wright designed homes for two local doctors in Manchester. The Zimmerman House was bequeathed to the museum in 1988, while the Kalil House was purchased by the museum in 2019.

For more about the Currier Museum's history and programming, please visit the museum's main site.