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“A hidden gem”

G. W. Henderson Plantation - Henderson Hall
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Attraction details
Owner description: Built in 1859 as the centerpiece of the 2,600-acre Henderson plantation, this impressive 17-room pre-Civil War mansion with all of its original furnishings, has survived as a legacy of the Victorian and Edwardian eras.
Reviewed March 26, 2014

We, along with some of our children and grandchildren recently visited Henderson Hall. I had read about the home about 2 years ago and always wanted to visit. But, a visit to Marietta gave us time to finally see this home. It is fascinating. We spent about 2 1/2 hours there and could easily have spent 2 days or more there to see all that is displayed. The docent who showed us the house had been volunteering for many years at the home and was extremely knowledgeable. He brought the home alive to us. Even our grandchildren were fascinated with the home. This is truly a hidden gem.

3  Thank sinaigirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed October 14, 2013

This home is still undergoing a renovation due to the amazing amount of memorabilia available on site. There is so much to experience in each room and the volunteers of this home are very happy to share their knowledge of the family's daily life. It feels as though you have entered in media res when you visit. The fact that this restoration is still ongoing is exciting and allows for an intimate exploration. The mechanical symphonium utilizing large brass plates is a wonder to hear.
Make the lovely drive and take a relaxed wander through this home. It's a unique experience compared to other historical homes.

5  Thank emwenz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 30, 2013

The Hendersons were the equivalent of 19th century hoarders, a condition which we today can't understand and often find deplorable. It seems as if they didn't throw away much of anything regardless of whether the item was still in useable condition or needed to be thrown in the trash. Over 150 years the generations of Hendersons took what was not being used and stored it in the third floor of their mansion or in the basement or in outbuildings. When the last family owner passed away leaving the estate to the Oil and Gas Museum of Parkersburg, the property was a time capsule filled with old documents, family letters, books, magazines, newspapers, photographs, artwork, an array of furniture, dishware, portraits, toys, clothing, etc. from the late 18th century through to the 21st century.

To tour this mansion with its 28 rooms is definitely a trip into the past and what an amazing trip it is. Each room is filled with a mixture of items from its long past. There are 18th century family portraits in oil along with 20th century photographs; 19th century toys along side those from the early 20th century; mannequins modeling wedding gowns in excellent condition from different generations of Henderson women; dinnerware that again spans the various owners of the house. The mansion is an ideal site to view different styles of almost anything that one finds in a household for the past 200 years.

The original house on the property was built in the 1830s with a grander Italianate style house built on to it in the front. I spent two hours roaming through the mansion from its basement to the widows walk a top the room and the grounds which includes a school house with its old slates, black board and teacher's desk, a carriage house with several different style of buggies and an old log cabin that appears to be undergoing repair. There are even three Indian mounds on the property dating back a few thousand years.

Henderson Hall was well worth the $5 admission price. It should appeal to any adult with an interest in history, decorating art, 19th century clothing, architecture, 19th century social life, etc. Each room has a rather thorough description of many of the items in each room. The tour is self-guided which enables a person to take his time in viewing each room and its objects. I was able to freely talk with the two docents on duty and exchange information with each other. It would have been nice if they could have discussed and took questions about each of the rooms though. I'm sure there was much that I either overlooked or knew nothing about that docents could have discussed with me.

Blennerhassett Mansion is on a nearby island in the Ohio River which also plays an important role in the Henderson family's story. It is open for touring via a boat ride from its dock in Parkersburg.

12  Thank Richard E
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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