Rediscover the Beauty of Victorian Florida
Bring your tour of Maitland history “home” with a visit to the Historic Waterhouse Residence Museum. Built in 1884 by pioneer settler and builder William H. Waterhouse as a home for his family. This house has been beautifully restored to reflect the way of life enjoyed by a middle class family during the late Victorian period. Enjoy a guided tour by a trained docent, where your first step into the foyer is a step into the past, when Florida heart of pine was turned by hand to form an Eastlake staircase; when visitors came “calling,” card in hand, and engaged in conversation seated upon furnishings stuffed with horsehair and wood-wool. You can almost hear the rustle of Mrs. Waterhouse’s starched skirts on the stair and smell the fragrance of orange blossoms from the groves in bloom in 1884.
Note: The Waterhouse Residence Museum is not a self-guided experience. Guided tours are available regularly throughout the day.
UPCOMING PROGRAMS & EXHIBITIONS
Halloween Tours at the Waterhouse
Enter if you dare … see the Waterhouse Residence Museum in an entirely different light during docent-guided tours. Many Victorian-era families were fascinated with folklore and practices surrounding death. Learn the traditions many families of that time followed after a loved one’s passing and hear the types of stories that may have been shared about what happened next.
Front Porch Stories
November 15, 2015 and March 13, 2016
Join the Art & History Museums – Maitland’s Curator of History, Melissa Perez on the front porch of the Waterhouse Residence Museum from noon – 2:00 pm for Front Porch Stories. Come hear stories about Maitland’s first residents and share if your family was part of our city’s past.
Holidays at the Waterhouse
Step in to Christmas past and explore Christmas traditions of the Victorian era with all of its décor and charm. See how Maitland’s early residents celebrated the holidays as the Waterhouse Residence Museum converted for this annual tradition.
Candlelight Tours at the Waterhouse
December 5, 2015 at 5:30pm
Enjoy the elegance and wonder of the Holidays at the Waterhouse Residence Museum during this one-time tour by candlelight. Imagine what it was like to prepare for the Christmas season using the only lighting source the Waterhouse family had in the late 1800s. Then join other holiday revelers for Maitland’s Season of Light Celebration at Lake Lily.
March 10 – May 15, 2016
See how the Waterhouse Residence Museum is transformed for Spring and Easter celebrations with flowers, cards, clothing and other historical items. Museum educators take you on a special tour of the house to share traditions of Florida’s Victorian-era families, including Spring cleaning, a typical Easter menu from 1885, tales from the origins of the Easter Bunny and old-fashioned egg dying.
Waterhouse Residence Museum
This historic house museum reflects the life of a middle class Victorian family during the early days of the city of Maitland. The home was originally built by Maitland resident and carpenter William Waterhouse in 1884. Visit and learn about the Waterhouse family and the early days of Maitland and Central Florida.
The Learning Garden
The Learning Garden is located next to the Waterhouse Residence Museum, this outdoor exhibit features plants popular in Victorian Florida. Bring friends and learn together the many uses of these plants during the Victorian era.