Maple Cottage Research Center
75 Regent Street, Chester, Nova Scotia
Maple Cottage, originally built in 1870, houses the research and educational areas for the museum. It is the first municipal building in the municipality and contains the original desk and safe used by Mr. Charles Lordly, the first Municipal Clerk, his son the second clerk/treasurer and Mr.Cottman Smith the third clerk. The building houses minutes from early council meetings, Lordly's correspondence and materials from the MacNutt collection help to reflect the political and economic development of the Municipality of the District of Chester and cover the period of 1870 - 1937. Photographs reflect the changing landscape and the development of the village and municipality over the years. In 1879 Chester had become its own municipality when it was officially separated from the Municipality of Lunenburg. It was now responsible for its own affairs and development.
This was a time when the American tourist industry flourished, large summer homes were built and large hotels dotted the village. It was claimed that Chester had at least 300 rooms available at any time. The railroad from Halifax had not yet been built to the village but passenger vessels arrived regularly from there. Chester was also the main land route from Halifax to the Annapolis Valley and so was a bustling municipality. It grew from a rural area providing wood, produce and building materials for Halifax to an area of tourism and small manufacturing.