By Lauren Busser
Thanks to the work of some historical societies, you can tour historic homes and get a taste of what life may have been like fifty, or a hundred years ago.
You won’t be able to take a load off and drink some wine but these stunning houses provide some curious history.
Here are five amazing houses you can visit.
The Molly Brown House (Denver, CO)
You might have had an obsession with the Jack and Rose romance on Titanic, but have you researched the actual survivors?
If you happen to be in Denver, Colorado, you can tour the home of “The Unsinkable Molly Brown,” survivor of the RMS Titanic. Throughout its history, The Molly Brown House has been a temporary Governor’s mansion, a boarding school, and a rooming house. Today, it’s a museum in downtown Denver, with free tours open to the public.
Now imagine if those walls could talk.
Kykuit (Sleepy Hollow, NY)
Millennials may never be able to afford a mansion, but that doesn’t mean they can’t tour one.
Located in New York’s Hudson Valley, Kykuit was home to four generations of the Rockefeller family, including Standard Oil founder John D. Rockefeller.
Today Kykuit is a historic site, open to the public from May to November with a selection of tours available.
The Ropes Mansion (Salem, MA)
Recognize this house? It appeared in Hocus Pocus! But what you may not know about The Ropes Mansion is that it is actually a museum and you can tour it on the weekends from May through October.
The house passed through three generations of the Ropes family from 1727 to 1912, when the last of the family died. The historic house was then preserved and turned into a museum. And, if you love antiques, this is truly the place to go with some gorgeous details like the family’s China displayed in the pantry.
Just make sure to keep any children safe if the Sanderson sisters are lurking about.
The Mount (Lenox, MA)
Are you looking for some writing inspiration, a bit of elegant country style, or a spooky ghost tour? Then you should take a tour of The Mount in Lenox, Massachusetts.
The Mount is the historic home of author Edith Wharton and offers several tours with various themes.
For the extreme bibliophile, you might enjoy the reservation-only private library tour where you can browse Edith Wharton’s personal library of nearly 2,700 volumes. Just make sure you plan ahead and contact them at least two weeks in advance.
Hearst Castle (San Simeon, CA)
Did you know you could find castles on the California coast?
Hearst Castle in San Simeon, California is not only stately but picturesque. The estate includes a twin-towered main building, three guesthouses, and 127 acres of terraced gardens and fountains. Not to mention an absolutely gorgeous swimming pool, which was refilled in 2018 after a two-year restoration.
The museum also offers several tours including a chance to see how the media mogul lived with the Upstairs Suites Tour and Cottages and Kitchens Tour. For those who really love history, the specialty Hearts and Hollywood Tour looks the museum through the lens of Hollywood’s golden age.