Research Time

One of the many hats worn by the director is that of researcher. You may think we have all of the information we could ever need, but that’s just not so. I am constantly reading to learn more (and the most up-to-date) information about the world in which the Whaley’s lived.

Right now, my time is filled with research for our fall House in Mourning program and exhibit. I mentioned this a few posts ago, but I’m working on creating an exhibit in the summer kitchen, along with a few special events during the month of October. But I’ve learned a few interesting things along the way that I wanted to share with you.


Did you know that after the death of a husband, a widow had to remain in mourning for over two years?

In poorer, working class neighborhoods local women were often charged with preparing a body for the viewing and funeral.

Spirit photography and other forms of spiritualism grew during this time and, even after admitting his photographs were fake, photographer William Mumler was acquitted of charges of fraud, because his customers believed his products really showed the dead.

spirit photography

These are just a few of the topics that will be explored in our program this fall. I hope I’ve piqued your interest!


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