The Wentworth-Coolidge Commission (WCC) was formed in 1982 when Governor Hugh Gallen appointed a group of volunteers to help care for the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion. He tasked the Commission with making recommendations for furnishings, improvements, and future use of the Mansion. The WCC incorporated as the Wentworth-Coolidge Commission, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. The Inc. was established in order to fundraise and solicit grants in support of the Commission’s mission and goals.
Acknowledging that the original responsibilities of the Commission had been substantially completed in 1989, Governor Judd Gregg issued a further Executive Order to continue the Commission’s involvement with the Mansion. He authorized the Commission to accept gifts of appropriate furnishings and to engage in fundraising activities, and he instructed the Commission to determine the maintenance needs of the Mansion.
The WCC has tackled a wide range of projects to help preserve this National Historic Landmark and attract increasing visitors to the site. Current projects include efforts to restore the historic heirloom lilacs to the site, landscape projects to augment the site’s natural beauty, and cleaning the furnishings inside the Mansion. The Commission also hosts a number of cultural and educational events each year. Art exhibitions, lilac festivals, dinner lectures, and other WCC sponsored events draw people to this Portsmouth treasure while promoting the rich history of the Wentworth-Coolidge Mansion.