Marietta’s Root House decorated in Victorian funeral style

William Root House, a two story wooden pre-Civil War house

The historic William Root House in Marietta will be decorated with furniture and accessories appropriate for a 19th century wake and funeral for the month of October. On October 13 and 14 the exhibits will be lit only by candlelight.

The house and museum is located at 80 North Marietta Pkwy NW, Marietta, GA 30060.

During the 1850s the family of druggist William Root lived in the house, and Hannah Root’s father, Leonard Simpson, died there on October 11, 1856.

The news release for the event describes what the museum has in store as follows:

“Curtains will be drawn, a coffin will be placed in the parlor, and the house will be adorned with black crepe and ribbons.

“Visitors will be able to view 19th century embalming equipment, mourning jewelry made from human hair, and other curious artifacts related to death and mourning during the Victorian era.

“Daytime tours are included in the cost of regular museum admission.” 

Flashlight tours

On October 13 and 14 flashlight tours will be conducted.

The announcement describes the special events as follows:

“On October 13th and 14th, visitors to the William Root House will explore darkened rooms decorated for a Victorian era funeral and lit only by candlelight.

“Tours are self-guided. It is recommended guests arrive no later than 8:30pm. Flashlight tours are $10 per person in advance and $15 per person at the door.

“Tickets are available online at Space is limited.”

About the William Root House

The William Root House was built in about 1845, and was the home of William Root and his wife Hannah.

William Root was a druggist who was born in Philadelphia. He moved to Marietta in 1839 to open a drug and general store. He married Hannah Simpson a year later, and they built the house at what is now Church and Lemon streets.

It was later moved to face Lemon Street, and was owned by William Root until 1886.

Afterward it had a series of owners and went into steady decline, and in the 1940s was split into apartments.

By the 1980s, the house was in serious disrepair and scheduled for demolition.

A preservation effort began, and in 1989 Cobb Landmarks & Historical Society bought the house and moved it to its current location at 80 North Marietta Pkwy NW, Marietta, GA 30060.