Award-winning Exhibit at the Tuck Museum

The 2011 recipient of the Association of New Hampshire Historical Societies award for public programming.


Based on diaries and letters from the Page-Cole Family Papers, Civil War era newspaper advertisements, and original research, this exhibit tells the story of Hampton native Mary Anna Page Getchell (1832-1913), an artisan who owned and operated millinery and dressmaking shops in Exeter, NH and Polo, IL, before, during, and after the turbulent years of the Civil War.

An excellent 48-page companion book, researched and written by local history writer Cheryl Lassiter, is available for purchase in the Museum Store.

This exhibit will run through the summer and fall. Admission to the museum is free.

Mary's World in Exeter, NH

1859-1860 (click to view larger image)

1861-1866 (click to view larger image)

1867 (click to view larger image)

1868 (click to view larger image)

1869 (click to view larger image)

Civil War era dress from the Tuck Clothing Collection


On the evening of May 6, 2011, the Tuck Museum was transformed into a charming 19th century parlor, providing the setting for a stage-adapted, dramatic reading of A Page Out of History. Playing to a packed house, the actors captivated the audience as they brought to life the words of Page family members, written in letters and diaries over 150 years ago. The reading explored themes of adventure, sibling rivalries, a mother’s worries, the strife of war, and a young woman striving for independence in a vast world of opportunities that surrounded her.

To access the PDF version of the script, click here.

Comment heard after the play: “Wow! I thought I was watching a program on NOVA. What a great way to tell the story of Mary Page.”

The Players ~ Maggie Gineris, Owen Thomas, Elaine Weatherby, John Stewart (not shown Candy Stellmach)

Cast: Maggie Gineris as Mrs. Susan Page; Owen Thomas as John Page, Mary’s brother; Elaine Weatherby as Mary Page; and John Stewart as Mr. Mark Twain. Not shown is Candy Stellmach, who played Mrs. Mary Page Getchell in the 1880s. These talented individuals gave up time in their busy lives to help make the reading a smashing success.

Candy Stellmach

Thanks to Candy Stellmach for creating the beautiful awning cover for the exhibit, to Dave DeGagne for helping to install the exhibit, including the antique sewing machine, to Carol Keating for the use of her beautiful antique napkins, Ann Carnaby of Tracy Theatre Originals in Hampton for providing props and Owen and Candy’s costumes, and especially to Executive Director Betty Moore, for her unwavering support…and for believing that this project could ever be finished!

The author, exhibit designer, and narrator, Cheryl Lassiter

%d bloggers like this: