PGAV Destinations, a global leader in the planning and design of unique destinations, is pleased to announce the official rededication of the Pilaster House Exhibits and the Justice of the Peace Office Interpretation at the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum in Hannibal, MO.
This is scheduled for 11:30 am on Friday, July 9, 2021. The ceremony will take place on the museum mall.
“The Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum is delighted to have been able to take a building that was named to the 2009 top 10 endangered properties list and have it restored. Having this important resource open allows us to present new interpretation on the formative years of Sam Clemens,” said James Lundgren, CEO and Executive Director of the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum. “We thank PGAV Destinations for their efforts on this important project.”
PGAV has worked with the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum since 2005 designing enhanced visitor experiences and exhibits as part of the overall tour of Mark Twain related sites in Hannibal. The latest opened just prior to COVID restrictions in 2020 and are officially celebrating a rededication. The Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum completed an extensive renovation of the Pilaster House — the site of Grant’s Drug Store and the Grant Residence — just down the street from the Mark Twain Boyhood Home.
“We have been given yet another opportunity to interpret the rich stories of Sam Clemens and this place,” said Diane Lochner, PGAV Vice President. “The creativity of our team and the collaboration with leadership provided the synergies to showcase these unique stories and shed light on the event that shaped Sam’s life.”
The Pilaster House holds a little-known story from Sam Clemens’ childhood. The Clemens’ family suffered a severe financial setback, and by 1846 they had sold off most of their possessions. Their neighbors across the street, the Grants, invited the entire family of five to move in with them in the apartment above the pharmacy. For a brief time in 1846-47, this was Sam Clemens’ home. Sam’s father, John Clemens, died while the Clemens lived here.
Exhibits on the second floor evoke the crowded conditions the combined families must have endured. Much of the exhibit is devoted to Jane Clemens, Sam’s mother, who struggled to hold the family together through simple faith and practical decisions.
Despite all this upheaval, Sam Clemens had fond memories of his time here, and the exhibits also capture the influences young Sam found.
The pharmacy was an important institution in a small town. Exhibits on the first floor recreate a period pharmacy as a centerpiece of small-town life. Here, residents could get the remedies and advice that passed for modern medicine. Interactive exhibits help visitors imagine living in constant fear of losing a child in one of these outbreaks, and how death, although much more common, was no less feared. Sam Clemens’ youth was touched by death multiple times, and his writings eloquently express the fears, attitudes, and resignation of the people he grew up with in Hannibal.
About the Mark Twain Boyhood Home and Museum
Comprising a collection of structures from Twain’s boyhood located throughout downtown Hannibal, including the Clemens family residence, the Mark Twain Boyhood Home & Museum is an entertaining experience through Samuel Clemens early years. A tour through these buildings gives visitors an opportunity to understand Twain’s early influences, and to make important literary connections to many of his best known works, including The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn. The mission of the Mark Twain Home Foundation is to promote awareness and appreciation of the life and works of Mark Twain and to demonstrate the relevance of his stories and ideas to citizens of the world. marktwainmuseum.org
About PGAV Destinations
PGAV Destinations is a global leader in the planning and design of unique destinations. Now entering its sixth decade, the practice has evolved to become the ideal destination-consulting partner, skilled at developing growth-oriented master plans and translating those plans into successful projects. No other firm offers such an integrated approach to destination planning.
PGAV Destinations’ key clients include industry leaders such as Delaware North Companies, SeaWorld Parks and Entertainment, the Biltmore Companies, Bass Pro Shops, Ameristar Casinos, Universal Studios, The Gettysburg Foundation, the Saint Louis Zoo, and many others. Recent assignments include planning and design at many of the world’s “must see” destinations, including the Grand Canyon, Biltmore Estate, Space Shuttle Atlantis, The Alamo, National Air & Space Museum, Chimelong Ocean Kingdom, the Georgia Aquarium, the Hoover Dam, and SeaWorld Adventure Parks. PGAVDestinations.com