James J. Hill, a Canadian American Railroad Executive, built the Great Northern Railway. The Hill mansion in St. Paul was home to the eleven family members and even more servants. The electrical and mechanical systems were way ahead of their time. There was a pipe organ, a museum, a classroom, a stage for the children's' plays and a hallway of sewing machines to make costumes. The kitchen, laundry and furnace areas were remarkable.
I found my spot in the history of the Hill House. I was in charge of the meal service, planning 6 meals a day, first for the 14 servants, then for the 11 family members. I planned the grocery list and detailed the expenses. I planned the meal service for the family and elegant affairs.
Bob was Axel, the man with the Smith & Wesson pistol, who kept the house and family secure. Chris was James Hill's son, also named James, who'd take over the family business after his Dad was gone. I could see Michelle behind the sewing machine or designing the elaborate heating system. Greg was the system designer.
There was no haunting here, but a family who made the best of everything.
The paper overlays for my characters were part of a Metamorphosis game I found in the Fort Snelling store. It was an 18th century English game of changing identity, complete with paper overlays and one generic portraits. The costumes are not representative of the mansion periods, but I could picture the Hill children in these!
Check my blog for pictures of the metamorphosis game and more pictures of the glorious mansion: