Tag: museum

14 Aug 2016

Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum  2

Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum | bonveillercher.com

Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum | bonveillercher.comReady to step back in time? Well we have found just the place to make you feel like you’re back in the early 1900’s! The W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum is a hidden gem in downtown Jennings, Louisiana. Just a block down from the Heywood Building, the museum’s exterior looks like an old storefront, and when you walk through the front doors you’re transported back to 1910 China, Louisiana!

Originally started to supply workers and farmers with goods, the store remained open until 1949 when they left for lunch, locked it up, and never opened it again. Eventually they boxed everything up (and we mean EVERYTHING) and stored it in a warehouse until the grandson donated everything for the creation of the museum in the 1990’s.

Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum | bonveillercher.comThe museum is absolutely overfull with old merchandise. Shelves and shelves of medicines, dry goods, fabric, and so much more can be seen, and almost everything still has the original prices posted! They kept everything including the original wholesale catalogs from which the merchandise was bought, so the curators of the museum can actually look back to see when things were purchased and for how much.

There are also some amazing examples of hand-woven Coushatta Indian baskets that were brought in by the Native Americans to trade for goods.

Along with the merchandise, the actual display counters were also brought to the museum. One measures 17 feet long and was brought in one piece! You can also walk through the original store doors.Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum | bonveillercher.com

This museum is such a cool find, and it would be a perfect way to get out of the house but still escape the heat and learn about early twentieth century life in small town Louisiana! It’s only $3 for adults and $1 for students, and there is a side room with rotating exhibits as well as the amazing Children’s Telephone Museum in the back portion (stay tuned for a separate post about that!).

Fearless Finds: W.H. Tupper General Merchandise Museum | bonveillercher.comThe museum is open Monday through Friday 9 to 5. For more information check out their website tuppermuseum.com, and we hope you take a trip back in time there very soon!

Keep smiling!Lexi

05 May 2015

Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum  0

Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.com

 

Did you know there is a history museum in Lake Charles? Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.comI sure didn’t until a few years ago when I saw the Imperial Calcasieu Museum on a list of extra credit opportunities for one of my college classes, and I enjoyed it so much I knew I had to head back and share this amazing find with my mom and our readers!

The Imperial Calcasieu Museum is located at 204 West Sallier Street in Lake Charles on the site of the winter home of Charles Sallier, one of the founders of Lake Charles. It opened in 1963 to celebrate the original Imperial Calcasieu region now split into the five parishes of Allen, Beauregard, Calcasieu, Cameron, and Jeff Davis. The exhibits range from locally found arrowheads to WWII memorabilia to antique toys and so much in between, and it’s the perfect place to learn more about the area whether you’re just visiting or have lived here all your life.

There is so much to see, we can’t share everything!

Here are our five favorite finds at the museum:

Borealis Rex Paddleboat Steering Wheel | Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.com1. The steering wheel from the Borealis Rex Paddleboat – Measuring over six feet in diameter, it’s an impressive sight. The Borealis Rex brought mail, goods, and passengers between Cameron and Lake Charles from 1905 to 1930.
2. John James Audubon’s beautiful Birds of America collection and Quadruped collection – We learned that in order to paint the animals, Audubon first had to kill the specimens then posed them in the scene. His work is simply amazing.
3. The 1910 Lake Charles fire exhibit – This impressive display shows before and after photographs of the fire that destroyed City Hall, the Catholic Church, and the Catholic School among other buildings for seven city blocks. They also have water grenades, signage, and other interesting artifacts from this great disaster.
4. A working Edison phonograph and horn from 1908 – This piece is not only easy on the eyes, but it still plays lovely music!
5. An original World War I woman’s uniform from a local resident – Originally bought from Abercrombie & Fitch for $135, this uniform looks like it could have been purchased yesterday.
1908 Working Edison Phonagraph and Horn | Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.comWorld War I Women's Uniform | Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.com

 

We could go on and on with our list because there are so many other interesting artifacts. They also have four scenes set up with mannequins and proper pieces of history, including an old-time barber shop with a beautiful display of shaving cream mugs that once belonged to local men.Fearless Finds: Imperial Calcasieu Museum | Explore the history of Lake Charles and the surrounding areas in this quaint museum full of fun and interesting finds! | bonveillercher.com

While all the exhibits are fantastic, our absolute favorite part of the museum was our personal tour guide the museum’s Executive Director, Susan Reed. She is so knowledgeable and welcoming, and she shared so many interesting facts with us!

The museum also has the Gibson-Barham Gallery which displays revolving fine art, cultural exhibits, and even live plays! We were able to take a sneak peak at the “Feathers and Fins” exhibit which included works of art from local public school K-12 kids. The next exhibit is “Playing with Fire” and opens May 15 from 6-8 and will run until June 27. It features pieces from local ceramic artists.

The museum is open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., and tickets are $5 for adults and $2 for children and senior citizens. Museum Members are admitted free.

For more information call 337-439-3797, visit their website at www.imperialcalcasieumuseum.org, or find them on Facebook.

Keep-2Bsmiling-Lexi2

P.S. No we didn’t forget about the amazing Sallier Oak that stands outside the museum! We have decided it deserves its own post, so keep a lookout for it coming soon!