The volunteers at the Hattie Weber Museum of Davis are busy preparing for a holiday celebration that honors the traditions of early Davisville.
They’re decorating a Christmas tree and filling goodie bags to give to children, recreating Christmas of 1898, when community of Davisville gathered at the Presbyterian Church on Christmas Eve. There was a 20-foot-tall tree lit by candles, and treats for the town’s 200 children were placed under the tree. The bags contained an orange, an apple, nuts and candy.
The museum’s bags replicate the contents and are tied with festive red and green yarn bows. The museum’s tree is not 20 feet tall but it does have “candles” made and donated by a third-grade class in 2008.
Children are always welcome at the museum, and for the next few weeks they can take home the treats as a reminder of the community’s past. There is no charge.
Other current exhibits at the museum include materials on the Lincoln Highway and Bill Roe’s bicycle trip along it from San Francisco to New York, wedding attire from a 1948 Chiles wedding, items from the museum’s collection of artifacts and photographs, a 1962 Schwinn bicycle typical of those ridden by UC Davis students on campus, Warren Hardaker’s photo collection and an account of the 1898 holiday festivities.
The Hattie Weber Museum, at 445 C St. in the northeast corner of Central Park, is open from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Wednesdays and Saturdays. Admission is free but donations are accepted with gratitude.