For as long as I can remember, I remember passing by a row of Victorian homes along the 110 North towards Pasadena. Once you passed the “wishing tunnels” at Chavez Ravine, this small town would appear on the right side. It always remained a mystery to me. It was like it’s own haunted village. Years later, I discovered it was Heritage Square Museum, a collection of Victorian homes from the early days of Los Angeles on display. Of course, I learned about this when I was living in Boston. I’d always meant to visit this tiny town, but never had the chance to. I found out via social media they were having a Halloween Mourning Tour. I’ve done something like this in Rhode Island; it would be interesting to see how a west coast museum does this.
Prior to going to Heritage Square, my sister and I went to a pinup photoshoot not too far from Heritage Square. We wish our make up skills were as talented as Iconic Pinups. However, we decided to dress for the occasion. My sister went in a 1920s outfit she picked up from Unique Vintage. I was wearing something more 1940s-esque rockin’ some victory rolls by Iconic Pinups. I’m not sure what the brand of dress is, but I did buy it during Unique Vintage‘s yard sale.
There were some classic hearses on display, including a vintage interpretation of the Ecto-One.
The Halloween Mourning Tour
This was more of a self-guided tour of the houses. Each house had a different theme that it covered. We couldn’t take a lot of photos indoors because of the restoration projects going on. Some houses were in better shape than others. Some were furnished and some were undergoing renovation. Only the first floors were available. Displays of Halloween party games, interactive seances, costumes, lectures on spirit photography and the spiritualism movement, etc were all covered. For about $20, you were really immersed into Halloween traditions of the time.
The Funeral Procession
We were able to catch the 3PM procession. It started from the entrance of the museum and made it’s way to the church at the end of the square. This was an reenactment by Heritage Square Museum costumed volunteers. It covered the funeral march to the church, the funeral eulogy, and final burial.
And other random photos from Heritage Square…
Most of these are pretty self explanatory, but a lot of these houses would make for splendid vintage style photoshoots. These were done with my simple point and click.
Overall, my sister and I had a great time at the museum. We’re glad we went. Unfortunately, because time flew by, we missed out on Retro Bettie Bazaar in Long Beach. October is a crazy month with so much going on in greater Los Angeles. If you have the time, definitely check out Heritage Square Museum. The mourning tour is a once a year thing, but this is one of the few places in greater Los Angeles that is putting effort in restoring and preserving classical LA architecture. This is the closest to a historical district we have without gentrification. Thank you again to the volunteers and docents at Heritage Square for making this a wonderful event. Glad we did it!