The Museums of Old York, formerly the Old York Historical Society, is the product of a merger of three historical organizations, The Old York Historical and Improvement Society, The Old Gaol Museum Committee, and The Society for the Preservation of Historic Landmarks in York County. The society was founded in York with histories dating back more than one hundred years. Originally referred to as Gorgeana, York is one of New England's earliest colonial settlements. It also has the distinction of being the nation's first chartered city (1641) and first incorporated city (1642). Offering thirty-seven period room settings and several galleries housed throughout nine historic museum buildings, the Museums of Old York showcases a wealth of early New England art, architecture, and decorative arts. The exhibits focus on the stories of southern Maine's men, women, and children and the world they created and lived in from the earliest settlement in the 1600s to the present day.