History comes alive at local Halloween event

Ciarra Kascak, 5, of Warren, points to the case containing the final “clue” in the Victorian Halloween scavenger hunt Saturday at the Sutliff Museum. Kascak, dressed as a raccoon, was spending the afternoon learning through Halloween crafts and stories at the museum.

WARREN — Incorporating history with creativity can be a difficult task, but volunteers at the Sutliff Museum found a way to make the ghosts of history come alive for children of all ages Saturday afternoon as it hosted the Victorian Halloween Open House.

A scavenger hunt through the exhibits of the museum — on the second floor of the main branch of the Warren-Trumbull County Public Library — was created to make the personal history of the Sutliff family come alive.

“The clues were written with the idea of getting visitors to look at objects in the cases,” museum director Melissa Karman told visitors.

Crafted clues led visitors to seek out objects related to the Victorian-era and Trumbull County history, including the role residents like the Sutliffs played in the Underground Railroad movement.

Other pieces of history highlighted in the hunt featured the life of Phebe, the Sutliffs’ sister, a college president and one-time candidate for Congress. Phebe Sutliff was a teacher, museum curator Aimee Wehmeyer said.

“We hope that visitors will come in to see the museum and then continue on to other events downtown,” Wehmeyer said.

Tyler Carlin, 6, of Beaver Falls, Pa., came to the museum with his family, who was planning to spend an “adventure Saturday” in the area. The family also was planning to attend the Ghost Walk after seeing both events on social media.

Carlin was among the younger guests the museum hoped to attract with the event. Other visitors from closer to home came out to learn a little something new.

“I wanted to know about Halloween in the Victorian era,” Amanda Hoover, 32, of Niles said.

Hoover was wearing an appropriate witch costume, complete with a broom, as proof that all ages were welcome at the event, which featured a read-aloud storytime, take-home crafts and refreshments.