July 9 - August 31
Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays
11am to 4pm
Arrive by 1:00pm for the full experience and to see all of the buildings
Admission: $10 ($8 member rate); $6 ages 12 and under ($4); $25 family rate for two adults with two or more children under the age of 18 ($20 member rate). Are you a member of Norlands? Norlands' members enjoy a 20% discount on admission and a 10% discount on all gift shop purchases. Remember to bring your membership card or Join Today!
Get inspired about life in 19th-century Maine and Livermore’s celebrated Washburn family – stop by the Norlands Living History Center in Livermore and take a living history tour.
About Living History Tours
Arrive anytime between 11am and 4pm. Tours are at your own pace. You will be guided through the mansion, but tours are ongoing as people arrive to the site. Arrive by 1:30pm to ensure that you will see all of the buildings.
Please note that two of our buildings are only open at specific times - plan your arrival time accordingly.
- Tour the mansion, farmer's cottage and barn anytime between 11am - 4pm
- The one-room schoolhouse closes at 3pm, in order for the 1883 Washburn library to open
- Step inside the library from 3pm - 4pm
- Gift shop is open from 11am - 4pm
Experience Life in a Crossroads Community in the 1800s
Interpreters, dressed in period clothing, portray a local person or a Washburn family member, someone you might have met had you visited Norlands in the 1800s. Be a scholar of 1853 in the schoolhouse. The school teacher will encourage you to practice your reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic in the District #7 school house. Take a tour of the mansion with a Washburn grandchild as she or he tells you all about their famous family. Visit the farmer’s cottage and meet one of the Washburn neighbors and perhaps help with the chores of the day, such as piecing, and play a mystery artifact game. Meet the animals in the barn or in the pasture. In the Washburn Library (3pm-4pm) see portraits of the family members and neighbors and artifacts from the Civil War period. The Universalist meeting house, built in 1828, is the oldest building on the site.
Round out your visit with a walk on a historic carriage trail. A short hike takes you to the Pools of Simeon, reflecting pools designed by William Drew Washburn in 1903. Maps are available in the gift shop. Wear comfortable walking shoes.
Bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the beautiful grounds. There are picnic tables on the grounds and rocking chairs on the piazza. Spend a relaxing day at the Norlands.
Special Thursday Programs
Enjoy your living history tour with an added splash of history on the side: special programming, in addition to the living history tours, will be offered on Thursdays throughout the summer. Check back often, the schedule is subject to change.
August 22: Health, Sanitation & Deadly Diseases in the 1800s
- 12:00pm: Presentation by Clara Howard on home remedies, customs and beliefs related to 19th-century health care.
- 2pm: Meet Elizabeth S. Kingman Horr (1835-1920), a 19th-century doctor portrayed by Tizz Crowley. Elizabeth Horr was the wife of Dr. Oren Alonzo Horr who was a pioneer in the use of antiseptic dressings in the 1800s. Working alongside her husband in the Civil War, she served as a nurse for wounded soldiers. After the War, they moved to Lewiston, Maine, and opened a medical practice. Elizabeth went on to formally study medicine and graduated from medical school in 1872.
Tizz, dressed in period costume as Elizabeth, will share stories about her life, the new medicines and ways for caring for the sick at this time, and reflect on how Dr. Horr became a pioneer for women in the medical profession.
August 29: Portrait Tour and Reverse Print Making Activity for Children. See newly restored portraits of Washburn family members. Hear about the artists who painted their portraits and the landscape paintings on view in the 1867 mansion. And, see etchings created by renowned artist Cadwallader Lincoln Washburn and learn about his incredible life as an artist and world traveler. Children can try their hand at making a reverse print.