The Ward Thomas Museum continues the tradition of showing off its holiday decor with the monthly open house to be held from 2 to 5 p.m. Saturday.
The museum, located at 503 Brown Street, and maintained by the Niles Historical Society, houses thousands of collections of historical artifacts relating to Niles, the surrounding areas and the era of the mansion built in 1862.
Home to two prominent Niles industrial families, the James Ward family, who built the house and John and Margaret Thomas, whose family founded the Niles Firebrick Company.
Classmates and friends on a special tour of the Ward-Thomas Museum pause by the tree to have their picture taken. Pictured from left are: Gina DeSimome, Nicole Adduci, Jonna Dunn, Jordan Smith, Chloe Miller and Laura Altobelli.
According to historical records, the Thomas family occupied the house until 1969 when the property was deeded to the city. Through the efforts of Clare Westenfield, a local attorney, the house became the home of the Niles Historical Society.
During Saturday's open house at the museum, Christmas decorations are still in place to allow visitors another opportunity to see the museum's holiday collections. These include a special collection of Santa Claus figurines and collectibles in the house's spacious dining room. The collection displays several different mediums used to produce the various Santas.
Following a tour of the house, refreshments will be served in the Westenfield Room, where visitors can also view a display of Department 56 Christmas collectibles as well as antique tin toys on exhibit.
Admission donation is $5 for adults and free for children 11 and younger accompanied by an adult. Private tours can be scheduled for groups and organizations. For information, call the museum office at 330-544-2143.