Maisie Brews a Business- 1920 Tea Rooms

March 11, 2018, 1:00 - 4:00 PM

Tea rooms were enormously popular in the first half of the 20th century and are a fascinating aspect of women’s history. Most were owned or managed by women and in the 1920s especially, tea rooms became the fashionable places for women to meet friends in small towns, big cities and suburbs. Several flourished in Maplewood and South Orange including the well-known Washington Inn.

At 2:00, historic interpreter Maureen OConnor Leach will take on the voice of a 1925 matron who is planning to open a Tea Room and will provide the audience with a view into the challenges faced by women who were stepping out of the home and into the business world. “Maisie’s” monologue references primary sources. She wears a tea frock sewn using a period pattern and uses other fascinating historically accurate accessories. Following the 2:00 p.m. presentation, tea and cookies will be served.

Read more about:

Women’s History

Next Event

June 9, 2019, 1:00 PM

Juneteenth: A Celebration of Freedom

Juneteenth, an African American celebration marking the end of slavery in the United States, will be the focus of the June program in collaboration with the South Orange Maplewood Community Coalition on Race. The afternoon will include dancers, storytelling, a quilt display, musicians, activities for families and children, Civil War Colored Troop reenactors, as well as information about New Jersey’s history of slavery, which continued up until the time of the Civil War.

As part of the celebration, we are sponsoring a student essay contest on communications barriers between people of different races. All students in grades 6 through 12 who are residents of Maplewood or South Orange are eligible. Deadline is May 28. Read more information about the contest.


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