A Step Back in Time
May 9, 2012By Ian Walton of Centralia High School Activities
A Step Back in Time
Anna Rusch, Morgan and Sydney Creel’s grandma and hostess at the Centralia Historical Museum, is in a trio, one could say. Not a band trio, but a trio of hostesses. Anna and two other ladies show guests around the 1904 house that used to be the home of the Chance family. The museum is now home to several antique materials. These materials range from sewing machines to Civil War memorabilia. The Civil War memorabilia include a mannequin of Bloody Bill Anderson dressed in a full Guerilla uniform. While people are shown this room, they also experience the maid’s room, nursery, kitchen, bathrooms, sewing room, and the basement that is full of tools.
“My favorite room is definitely the master bedroom. It has an antique bed in it that Paul Sturgeon donated to us awhile ago, and it also has a baby bed, which is really cute,” states Anna. The master bedroom is where Mr. Chance, the man who started Chance Company, resided. The house contains 14 rooms altogether.
In addition to showing guests around the home, the hostesses also organize displays. Every few months they change their display. For example “Healthy Living” was April’s theme.. They are using old pharmacy equipment from Kinkead Pharmacy and decorating the museum with it. In a couple months, they will decorate the house with summer displays. Every two years the hostesses put on a quilt show. They hang up over 60 quilts and guests come in and vote on their favorite quilts. One of Anna’s quilts that she made for her granddaughter took 7th place.
If people want to visit the museum, they can come every Wednesday and Sunday from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. Nice clothing--like slacks and a polo--is considered appropriate dress to tour the large house. “It is very interesting to come see all of the old items the Chance family had. These items are not very popular anymore and it is fun to see them in person.” The Chance house would be a great place for all ages to visit. It will show visitors a little history of Centralia and you can have tea after!