Experience a Christmas of yesteryear at the Victorian Christmas Open House & Horse Drawn Trolley Tours

Photos submitted to Times Observer John Bowler on parlor guitar.

The Warren County Historical Society invites you to step back in time and experience a Christmas of yesteryear at the Victorian Christmas Open House & Horse Drawn Trolley Tours from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7.

The feeling of Christmas warmly fills the historic Struthers-Wetmore-Schimmelfeng House, now home to the Warren County Historical Society, with the sights and sounds of the holiday season. Elaborate decorations by the Warren Garden Club transform the visitor back to Christmases of yore. Multiple Christmas trees on both the first and second floors are lit and embellished with vintage ornaments, and decorations throughout the building accent the architecture of the historic home.

The talented Youngsville High School string orchestra will set the tone as they play holiday pieces in the spacious front parlor, and John Bowler will add to the ambiance by playing an antique parlor guitar in the upstairs Victorian parlor.

Children are invited to string popcorn, an old-time Christmas tradition, as they sit around one of the many Christmas trees. Refreshments will be provided by Kinzua Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center and AseraCare Hospice.

The historical society’s signature horse-drawn trolley tours will feature stories of “Businesses of Yesteryear.” As you take the brisk ride through the peaceful streets of Warren’s historic district, hear how daily life has changed since the 1800s. Learn about the people that chiseled and gathered ice off of the river, the milkman who delivered creamy dairy right to the doorstep, and the elaborate lengths people went to for everyday commodities like salt. Listen to tales of businesses that now exist only in photographs and memories, such as the retreat that boasted healing water, the hotel that hosted famous politicians, Warren’s famous early pharmaceutical business, and smaller shops like blacksmiths and Warren’s first merchant. Tours begin at 7 p.m.Trolley tickets are $7 per person, first-come, first-serve, and are available at the Warren County Historical Society.

Photos submitted to Times Observer Horse-drawn trolley tour.

Unique Christmas gifts such as books, DVDs, maps, playing cards, t-shirts, and more are available for purchase throughout the season and at the open house. The Warren County Historical Society is located at 210 Fourth Avenue, Warren, PA 16365, and is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

For more information, call (814)723-1795, visit www.warrenhistory.org or find them on Facebook.

Photos submitted to Times Observer A vintage image of ice-cutting, one of the stories featured on the horse-drawn trolley tours.