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Historic New England home tours help preserve history

Castle Tucker in Wiscasset (WGME)

STATEWIDE (WGME) -- Tours of historic New England homes are starting back up for the season.

Historic New England has 39 historic house museums including Castle Tucker in Wiscasset, which was built in 1807.

"We focus on the family that moved in in 1858, the Tuckers," says Wiscasset Site Manager Peggy Konitzky, "And that was Captain Richard Tucker, Jr. and his wife Molly, and when they moved in Richard was 43 and Molly was 16."

On tours here, visitors learn about the Tuckers' marriage, family and way of life in this special home.

"The house is basically a square federal house, but then with these two rounded bays on each side, which is what makes it really unusual," says Konitzky.

The Tuckers' granddaughter gave the property to Historic New England in 1997.

"She spent years putting together all the family letters and things like that," says Konitzky, "Since they were a shipping family and traveled a lot, they wrote a lot fortunately, because that has given us an amazing glimpse into these people who are not your normal staid Victorian people."

There are still some mysteries though, which Konitzky says makes it all that more intriguing.

"It's an amazing house and I don't think it'll ever give up all its secrets," she says.

Just as important as the items inside are the stories behind them.

"It's a story of real people and hardship, joy, everything that life is," says Konitzky, "There's something that everybody can relate to in this house."

Konitzky says the tours help raise money for the nonprofit to preserve the homes and fix any structural problems, so they can continue sharing the stories with the public.

"The tours are a lot of fun and history is a lot of fun," she says, "And i think people expect one thing of a guided tour and they always leave here saying, 'Wow, that's the best tour I've ever had, this was so much fun'."

Castle Tucker is one of six Historic New England properties in Maine and tours run through October. For locations, times and admission rates, click here.

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