Sunday, June 29, 2014

Mourning James Buchanan

Wheatland Plantation in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, was the home of the 15th President of the United States, James Buchanan, and his niece and first lady, Harriet Lane. In June, I participated in a special program bringing to life the days following the death of James Buchanan on June 1, 1868.  My mother, Nancy, her friend Audrey, and I portrayed relatives of Buchanan. It is rewarding to participate in living history scenarios, educating visitors about moments in history.

We are pictured here in the parlor of Wheatland. Period accounts describe this room as having several desks in it - basically a second study. Previously the room was styled as a typical Victorian parlor. Behind us is Buchanan's desk with newspapers scattered about it.

Because I have yet to finish a proper mourning dress, I chose to wear my black plaid wool dress.

This beautiful hair net was created by Beverly Lister. She does lovely millinery work! This is the most recent creation that I've commissioned from her.

This darling bonnet was created by the talented Pamela Robles. I have long admired pictures of her bonnets online but this was the first that I saw in person. It is very beautifully made.

Read more about the mourning of James Buchanan in this June 17th blog post by Wheatland Museum Associate, Jennifer Walton.

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