Our Staff and Board
The Southampton History Museum is staffed by a dedicated group of professionals and volunteers. Please use the information below to contact individuals directly.
Born in Lawrence, KS. He was the son of a cowboy artist, who gave him an early exposure to turpentine, visits to museums and the history of the American West. He majored in fine arts at Ohio State University, received a graduate degree in painting at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and did post-graduate work in museum studies at N.Y.U.
He moved to NYC to find fame as an artist and, instead, found and married the love of his life, Maribeth. He has been working in historic house museums for 30 years in Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and Florida.
He was hired in 2006 to lead the Southampton History Museum and has, since then, lived the best life he can imagine. His job is primarily consumed with the museum’s development as a cultural attraction and raising the profile of historic Southampton. He accomplishes this by working with community leaders, museum staff and volunteers whose dedication and energy gives him the most satisfaction.
Maribeth and he share a home in Mattituck along with Pickles, Bubbles and Daisy.
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Connor has been with the Southampton History Museum as an employee since January 2016. But he actually got his start in May 2015 as an intern while home from college for the summer. Connor has loved history his whole life and one of his earliest memories is staring at the Temple of Dendur exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of . He also has museum work in his blood with his great-grandfather, Eugene Schaefer, having been an archaeologist who specialized in ancient glass from the Mediterranean. Portions of his vast collection are on display at the Newark Museum of Art.
Connor's favorite part of his job at the Southampton History Museum is to give kids the chance to make deep connections with their history and get hooked like he did through all kinds of hands-on learning experiences. These programs have included writing with quill pens, building small working sail boats, creating faux scrimshaw art and many more! "I just really love history and I want to inspire as many kids as I can to love it too."
If you want your kids to get inspired, ask their teachers to reach out to us and set up a field trip.
Director of Special Events
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Liana started with SHM in October 2019 as the Special Events Assistant. Her favorite program hosted by the Museum so far has been the Senior Holiday Party at the Rogers Mansion. “People don’t always realize all the hard work that goes into planning an event but when you see the end result and everyone’s having fun enjoying themselves while doing something for a good cause, it’s truly rewarding.” Liana is beyond excited to be part of such a great team and looks forward to the many upcoming events here at the Museum!
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Laurie grew up in the Southampton Village. She was encouraged to learn the local history by Mr. Conklin, her Social Studies teacher when she was a junior in high school. She started working at the Halsey House in 1994. At that time the museum properties were only open from mid-June to mid- September.
Soon after she started working there the museum board hired their first director. After that the museum started to evolve rapidly. She has developed a passion for the local history and learns something new every day. The best part is the many people she has met from all over the country who have come to the museum to do research. She has remained in contact with many of them. She loves to share and collect history.
Research Center Manager
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Mary has been with the museum for more than ten years. She grew up in Southampton and returned after living elsewhere in the U.S. and abroad for several years. With roots in Southampton that go back to its 17th-century origins, she has always had a keen interest in history. Spending her summers in her grandfather’s house, which had been a boarding house in the 19th century, deepened that interest and as a journalist and author, she has always gravitated toward historical subjects.
At the museum she takes particular pleasure in helping scholars and history buffs with their research, relying on the extensive archives and many books in the museum’s library. She is delighted that in her work at the museum, she is always learning and often called upon to write for an exhibit or for some other project.
Sally Van Allen
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Sally Van Allen joined the Museum staff in August 2017. She moved to Southampton in 2014 from Washington, D.C. after retiring from a 35-year career at The Gallup Poll and set about restoring her great-great grandparent’s home on North Main Street. Southampton’s lore and history was not exactly beaten into every fiber of her soul, but it came close. One great aunt was among the original eight that incorporated The Southampton Colonial Society in 1910. Another great aunt wrote In Old Southampton and their brother, her grandfather, was president to the Southampton Colonial Society at the time of his death in 1954. Van Allen is excited to be part of a fun and dynamic team working to make sure the museum is relevant for the Southampton community in the 21st century.
What surprised her the most about working in a history museum? “It is a wildly busy place. The screen door is always banging with volunteers coming and going. There could be a garden club meeting in the Music Room, a scholar in the library doing research, visitors coming in the front door, a meeting on the grounds to discuss the best location for a wedding and Tom is always running up and down the stairs.”
Stephen Gould joined the Museum as a Volunteer in 2019, following a career in commercial real estate. He was introduced to the Museum while preparing an exhibit for the “boots on the ground theater” production of The Red Badge of Courage at the Southampton Cultural Center. Inspired by his grandfather’s love of Abraham Lincoln, he studied History and Art History at Connecticut College. Through the years, he has maintained a curiosity about history. “I love diving deep into the Museum’s collection and I hope to inspire future generations with the same curiosity about history that I have."
Pelletreau Silver Shop Site Manager & Contemporary Jeweler
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Alyssa Saccente was born and raised on the East End of Long Island. Living in an environment that was both woods and sea, she was exposed to many different natural patterns, forms, and symmetries that have come to heavily influence her work. Her love of the small and intimate, coupled with her acute eye for line and pattern has resulted in the development of a studio practice that deals very much with the subjectivity of line and form, which she continues to draw upon as a source of inspiration. Alyssa attended the State University of New York at New Paltz and graduated in 2012 with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Metal. She has been working consistently with silver and gold since 2012, and is always looking to explore new techniques and materials within her process. Her goal is to inspire moments of joy and beauty through her work and encourage education and a new appreciation for the practice of silversmithing.
Margaret Sullivan, President Emeritus
Father Patrick Edwards
1st Vice President
2nd Vice President
Robert Beck, Co-President Emeritus
Kerin Rea Guidera
Elizabeth A. Lear
Kate Milligan, President Emeritus
Hillary Woodward, President Emeritus
Suzanne Caldwell, Trustee Emeritus
Dede Gotthelf, Trustee Emeritus
John Griffin, Trustee Emeritus
Sheila Guidera, Trustee Emeritus
Peter L. Hallock, Trustee Emeritus
Nancey McGann, President Emeritas
Gerri MacWhinnie, President Emeritas
Anne Bishop Rachel, Co-President Emeritus
Ann Reisman, Trustee Emeritas
Howard Reisman, Trustee Emeritus
Linda Stabler-Talty, Trustee Emeritus
Cynthia Van Allen Schaffner
Sandra Walser, Trustee Emeritus
Jesse Warren, Trustee Emeritus
Eric Woodward, President Emeritus