Peña-Peck House - Woman's Exchange of St. Augustine
Guided tours of the house are available Sunday – Friday 12:30 to 4PM and Saturday 10:30 to 4PM. Tours are free, although donations are welcome. If your large group or organization would like to visit, please let us know you are coming so we can make sure to have enough tour guides on hand.
The Peña-Peck House was constructed circa 1750 by order of the King of Spain as the residence of his royal Treasurer, Juan Esteban de Peña.
Built of native coquina stone, it is one of the finest surviving First Spanish Period homes in the Nation’s Oldest City. Today the loggia and the first floor remain little changed.
During the British Period, Governor Patrick Tonyn not only lived in the house, but also used it as the last official seat of the British government in North America south of Canada until 1785.
In 1837, Dr. Seth Peck and his family came from Old Lyme, Conn., and purchased the rundown property. Dr. Peck completely renovated the structure, adding a second story of wood to accommodate both his home and his medical practice. Dr. Peck’s medical office was on the first floor, in what is now The Woman’s Exchange gift shop. The large northwest room that has an entrance to Treasury Street was rented for use as a general store.
For 94 years, the Peck family continued to occupy the house. The only child to wed was Lucy, who married a merchant, George Burt. Lucy and George had four children, but they all remained single. The oldest, Anna Gardener Burt, was the last survivor of the family.
Upon Miss Anna’s death in 1931, she willed the property to the city of St. Augustine to be exhibited to the public as a house museum. It was during The Great Depression, and the city was about to decline the gift when The Woman’s Exchange (Miss Anna was a founding member) came forward. The Woman’s Exchange moved its shop to the Peña-Peck house and the membership obligated itself to maintain and operate the museum. It opened to the public in 1932.
Today, Exchange members guide visitors throughout the house, which is filled with Peck furnishings, including priceless 18th century American antiques. Find out what life was like in the Oldest City, as you step back in time and listen to anecdotes about the Peña and Peck families on one of our tours.