Miksch Gardens and House
532 South Main Street
Construction 1771, restored 1960
Ticket required, open during museum operating hours.
The Miksch House, built of logs although covered in clapboard and painted soon thereafter, was the first house built in Salem to be occupied by a single family. Prior to this time, the First through Fifth Houses, located further north on South Main Street, had been constructed as shared living spaces for the first settlers of Salem. By 1785 a small addition was added to the rear of the house.
The Miksch Gardens and House experience –Seed to Soil to Supper – is the most intensive living history site in Salem. Here visitors are immersed into the life-sustaining activities of the 18th century as they interact with the interpreters. The seasons and the weather are the defining forces and dictate work in the gardens, orchards, yard and kitchen.
The 1771 Matthew Miksch House is the first single family home built in Salem, NC. Matthew Miksch was trained as a gardener in Europe where he learned the skills to support his family by growing and selling vegetables, seeds and young fruit trees. He also processed and sold tobacco, and with his wife, Henrietta, baked and sold gingerbread. He served as the forester and assisted master surveyor, Christian Gottleib Reuter, with the survey of Wachovia. Today, the Matthew Miksch Gardens and House give us a unique opportunity to explore the interconnectedness of the gardens, orchards and yard, with Maria Henrietta’s domestic responsibilities.