Upstairs Downstairs:
A new docent-led tour focusing on Victorian women

Upstairs Downstairs won History in Pennsylvania’s  ”2013 Excellence in Education and Public Programming”

Upstairs Downstairs: Women in Victorian Philadelphia, their social strata, their historical context and significance. The tour examines women’s roles during the Civil War era, and the early suffrage movement.


Upstairs Downstairs will be offered on the first Friday evenings of each month beginning Friday, April 5, 2013. Step back in time to discover the challenges and enjoyments of Victorian women across all socioeconomic levels. Guests will be greeted at the door by a Victorian maid who will conduct the below stairs tour. Upstairs the lady of the house will guide visitors.











Features of the interpretation include:

  • Roles of Victorian women, from housemaids to middle-class Anna Maxwell and upper-class Rosalie Stevenson
  • Problems encountered by women during the 19th century such as taxation without representation, lack of personal freedom, property rights, divorce and custody laws.
  • The impact on, and service of, women during the Civil War.
  • Rotating displays of fashion plates from Godey’s Lady’s Book and Victorian-era menus, including: Christmas Dinner, Early Spring Breakfast party, Summer Picnic and At Home Tea
  • Each guest will receive a unique pin and an informational card of a Victorian woman, with which to identify during the tour. Featured Philadelphia women include suffragists, lawyers, doctors and writers, as well as less accomplished women such as the Maxwell maids, prostitutes, etc.
  • Authentic Victorian-era cookie baked from a recipe featured in Miss Leslie’s Directions for Cookery. Philadelphian Eliza Leslie was 19th century’s most popular author of cookbooks. Each person takes home this Victorian recipe.
  • Enjoy champagne and light comestibles.

This very special tour would be perfect for a Friday evening group outing. Call to schedule your group.WHYY Newsworks reviewed the Mansion’s Upstairs Downstairs interpretation. Read it HERE.

Scheduled 2014 Dates:
March 7, 2014, 7 p.m.
May 2, 2014, 7 p.m.
September 5, 2014, 7 p.m.
October 3, 2014, 7 p.m.
December 5, 2014, 7 p.m.
Reservations required.
Cost: $20
Click here to purchase tickets online or call 215-438-1861 for details and tickets.
Visa and MasterCard accepted
This very special tour would be perfect for a Friday evening group outing. Call to schedule your group.

Photo Credit: Kyle Cassidy