Late last year I received an email from Christina Ryan, Public Programs Coordinator at The History Museum in South Bend. I knew Christina from her days as an employee at Old National Bank and I knew she had left the bank, but wasn’t aware of where she had gone.
The email was an inquiry to see if I would be interested in doing a wine tasting and program on my experiences in developing our wine organization and making wine. Without too much hesitation I accepted the offer and we set a date for the program. Although the dates changed several times during the course of months, the program finally came off without a hitch on Thursday, March 19.
I asked Christina to tell us all about The History Museum and today’s operation of the Museum. Here is what she had to say:
J.D. and Anna Oliver, along with their four children, moved into their home at 808 West Washington on New Year’s Day, 1897. The 38-room Victorian mansion would be home to the Oliver family for the next 75 years. J. D. was president of the Oliver Chilled Plow Works, located in South Bend. The company was founded by James Oliver, inventor of the chilled plow.
Susan Catherine Oliver, the fourth Oliver child, lived out her life at Copshaholm and is responsible for the redecorating effort after her mother passed away and she became the lady of the home. She was born March 6, 1896, and died April 19, 1970. She also lived there with her brother, Joseph Doty Oliver, Jr., who moved back home following the death of his wife. He died on July 6, 1972. They were the last of the Oliver family to call the mansion home.
The Oliver Mansion, or Copshaholm as the family called it, was donated to the Northern Indiana Historical Society by Gertrude Oliver Cunningham’s (the second Oliver child) children a year after her death in December of 1987.
The History Museum and the Studebaker National Museum share an entryway and visitors can purchase a “campus admission” which allows them to see both museums and get a guided tour of the Oliver Mansion. However, the two institutions are run separately. The mission of The History Museum is to collect, preserve, interpret, exhibit and teach the heritage of the St. Joseph River Valley Region to enrich present and future generations. The museum comprises the Oliver Mansion, the Worker’s Home, Voyages Gallery of Local History, the Ernestine M. Raclin Gallery of Notre Dame History and Kidsfirst Children’s Museum, and serves as the national repository for the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League.
Here’s a cool video about the museum:
The evening’s program was enjoyed by about 50 attendees. After my program everyone was treated to our Glenwood Cellars wine and hors d’oeuvres supplied by Villa Macri Catering in Mishawaka, (574-277-7273). At several locations throughout the museum, actors portrayed the Olivers and provided insight into the love stories of J.D. and Anna Oliver, along with other Oliver couples.
The wines we poured were the 2012 Glenwood Cellars Chardonnay, recently rated at 90 points by Wine Enthusiast magazine; the 2013 Glenwood Cellars Pinot Noir and the 2011 Glenwood Cellars Cabernet Sauvignon rated at 88 points by Wine Enthusiast magazine.
I believe everyone enjoyed themselves and is looking forward to another evening at The History Museum. For information on programs and events at the Museum please contact Christina Ryan at 574-235-9664, ext. 233 or by email at cryan@historymuseumSB.org.
Future Wine Dinners & Tastings
We regret to report that both the April 14 event at Lucchese’s and the April 23 event at Uptown Kitchen have been cancelled by those restaurants. Please update your plans accordingly and we look forward to seeing you at our events in May and June:
May 7 – McCarthy’s featuring craft beer from Iechyd Da and Eric Kent wines
May 7 – Mother’s Day Tasting Event at Chalet Party Shoppe on CR 17 in Elkhart (6 to 8 pm)
May 26 – Lucchese’s featuring White Oak wines
June 11 – Uptown Kitchen featuring White Oak wines
June 11 – Summer Tasting Event at Chalet Party Shoppe on CR 17 in Elkhart (6 to 8 pm)
June 16 – McCarthy’s featuring Glenwood Cellars wines and the Tiedemann Red
June 23 – Lucchese’s featuring craft beer from Iechyd Da and wines from the Tiedemann Wines portfolio
July 11 – 13th Annual Charity Tasting Event & Silent Auction at Chalet Party Shoppe on CR 17 in Elkhart (2 to 5 pm)
Upcoming ToutSuite Programs we think might interest you:
April 9 at 9 p.m. EST
Meet Your Maker: Napa Artist Richard VonSaal
April 17 at 9 p.m. EST
World Malbec Day: Join Master Sommelier Gilles de Chambure and a panel of Sommeliers as they explore and discuss different Malbec wines from Mendoza, the primary Malbec producing region in Argentina
As always, I appreciate your support of our wine blog and encourage you to share it with family and friends. If you care to share your comments on this blog posting or other topics please do so in the comments section below.
Until next week,