Dead On

There are many ways to die, and there were even more in previous centuries. The Four Mile House Historic Park invites you to celebrate them with its sixth annual In the Dead of Winter: Victorian Mourning, an interactive look at death and dying in the nineteenth-century West. Taking place in Denver’s oldest home, the event includes speakers who will discuss everything from proper Victorian mourning attire to kitchen-table embalming practices and old, now-barbaric medical procedures. Participants will also walk in a funeral ceremony and learn about the rituals surrounding it.

This is an educational view on how we deal with illness and death now versus how Victorian-era families were directly involved in the funeral process,” says MacKenzie Pacifico, Four Mile development director.

Along with the step-by-step tour of a Victorian home funeral, there will be stations set up for braiding the hair of dead relatives (don’t worry, the hair is fake), gravestone rubbing and humorous obituary writing — where patrons can create silly passages about the pretend deceased.

The Victorian Mourning program runs from noon to 4 p.m. at the park, 715 South Forest Street, and is open to all ages; tickets are $4 to $7. Tea and historically accurate snacks will be served. For more information or to purchase tickets, go to or call 720-865-0800.
Sun., Feb. 13, 12-4 p.m., 2011

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Bree Davies is a multimedia journalist, artist advocate and community organizer born and raised in Denver. Rooted in the world of Do-It-Yourself arts and music, Davies co-founded Titwrench experimental music festival, is host of the local music and comedy show Sounds on 29th on CPT12 Colorado Public Television and is creator and host of the civic and social issue-focused podcast, Hello? Denver? Are You Still There? Her work is centered on a passionate advocacy for all ages, accessible, inclusive, non-commercial and autonomous DIY art spaces and music venues in Denver.
Contact: Bree Davies