Peter Goff Tenant House Museum:

In the 1850’s, the Oregon iron works company built twelve tenant houses that were rented to married ore miners and furnace workers. When the furnace and mining operations ceased in the 1870’s, these structures gradually decayed, eventually disappearing sometime after the turn of the twentieth-century. In the mid-1980’s, Baltimore County Public School students began to investigate the history of Oregon Town through a program of archaeological excavation and documentary research. These activities involved an area of Oregon town once occupied by a row of tenant houses.
Excavation focused on four of the original tenant houses. After completing excavation of the second house site, students worked over a period of six years on a reconstruction of one tenant house. Completed in 1995, this reconstructed building operates as a tenant house museum. The interior is appointed with objects representing the thirty-year period of the Oregon Town occupation. A number of the objects are artifacts excavated from the site and mended by the students while others have been purchased or donated for display. The museum is named for Peter Goff, one of the African-Americans who worked in the furnace town.


(Foreground) House foundation, ‘Tenant Row’
(Distance) Boarding house across field.

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Objects on display in the Tenant House Museum
(Lathe and plaster construction visible on the right).

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handle2.gif (2563 bytes) All students and teachers visiting the Center for Archaeology facility for on-site programming tour the Peter Goff Tenant House Museum in order to help understand the context of the material culture they are recovering. The museum also serves as the office for the Center for Archaeology.

The tenant house reconstruction project won an Honorable Mention in a 1998 national home improvement competition sponsored by Better Homes and Gardens and the National Association of Home Builder Remodelors.