Courtesy DE Ag Museum and Village
Published May 04, 2017
To call the quaint village and historic buildings that encompass the 10 acres of pristine farmland in Delaware’s Delmarva Peninsula a museum seems a misnomer. No sterile walls or strict security system await visitors when they arrive; instead, guests are greeted by the rhythmic clucking of chickens, the grassy scent of freshly drawn milk and the beautiful sight of children playing on the lawn.
Life is simple at the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village, and that’s all by design. The museum operates as Loockerman Landing village, a re-created 19th-century rural village with a farmstead, a one-room schoolhouse, a church, a gristmill, a train station, a general store, a barber shop, a blacksmith shop and more, all tucked within the confines of this frozen-in-time town. The purpose of the museum is to give visitors a glimpse of what life was like before cellphones and Wi-Fi, and to leave behind a legacy for future generations.
Though Loockerman Landing is a fictional town, visitors are surprised to learn that the outbuildings that line the streets are not reproductions, but actual historic buildings that were brought from elsewhere in the state to add to the authenticity of the village. The oldest one is the Cornhouse, dating back to 1825, when it was used to store dried, filed corn through winter.
Visitors can step into the past by touring the exhibit buildings, where more than 12,000 artifacts are on display, including a 1700s log cabin, a mock milkable cow, a 1930s kitchen, a 1941 Steerman airplane crop sprayer, the first Broiler Chicken House, a soil exhibit and three galleries with rotating exhibits throughout the year. The exhibit buildings also act as some of the most popular venues for hosting meetings, with room for up to 300 people and plenty of breakout spaces and smaller venues for more intimate gatherings.
The entire village can be rented out, as well as the farm grounds, which makes the Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village an unusual venue for hosting celebrations and special events like weddings, cocktail parties, picnics, reunions, receptions, press conferences and political events.
The Delaware Agricultural Museum and Village operates nine different meeting spaces ranging from informal to formal venues. The South End of the Great Hall, which holds up to 300 guests, is a Pole Barn without air conditioning, and guests renting the space can add on the Central Hall for extra seating. The South Gallery, for up to 175 guests; the Atrium, for up to 100 guests; and the Conference Room, for up to 80 guests all have heating and air conditioning, and the Touch of History Room, for up to 42 guests, and the Church, for up to 80 guests, offer minimal heating and no air conditioning. The outdoor Loockerman Landing is a perfect space for outside church weddings, and Blacksmith Green, also outdoors, is in the heart of it all next to the pond.
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