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Galt’s Rae House Museum celebrates 20th anniversary

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Posted: Monday, June 13, 2011 12:00 am | Updated: 9:48 am, Mon Jun 13, 2011.

The Galt Area Historical Society celebrated the 20th anniversary of the Rae House Museum, a restored 1868 Victorian house that allows visitors to view photos and furnishings that defined Galt.

Docents led tours of the home's interior, the rose garden and paintings by the late wife of longtime Galt resident Earl Arrants.

A long pink ribbon was cut by Gracie Malson, daughter of Tom and Grace Malson. Young Gracie, then 13, cut the ribbon dedicating the Rae House when it opened in 1991. She was called back to cut the ribbon on the 20th anniversary celebration as well.

Galt Mayor Barbara Payne, Sacramento County Supervisor Don Nottoli, of Galt, Karen Schauer, superintendent of the Galt Joint Union Elementary School District, and historical society President Gary Berreth gave remarks at the celebration.

Those taking tours on Sunday saw a host of Galt artifacts. They include:

  • China owned by Galt pioneer John McFarland, circa 1855.
  • An old-time organ donated by the late actress Amanda Blake, who lived for several years on the Performing Animal Welfare Society grounds on Simmerhorn Road.
  • Photographs of Alice Rae, the last person to live in the house. She taught in Galt elementary schools for 30 years and was also the town's city clerk in 1955.
  • Old photos of the former Brewster General Store at Fourth and B streets, the old Galt Hotel at Fourth and C streets, some of the original churches in town, and the Galt High Class of 1915.
  • A photo and hand-written diary by Louise Need, one of the earliest teachers in Galt. One of her entries from 1906 refers to her hearing about San Francisco being on fire.
  • Old furnishings, including a large ice box.

Former curator Nancy Stigelmayer, who led some of the Rae House tours on Sunday, said she is developing a mystery she hopes to complete next year. The basic premise is that the old Brewster General Store, one of Galt's first buildings, was robbed, and the audience has to figure out who did it.

People in period costume will appear at McFarland Living History Ranch, and audience members will question them about the robbery. Clues will be provided as well.

The Brewster General Store was recently restored and is now home to Brewster Bar & Grill.

Contact reporter Ross Farrow at rossf@lodinews.com.

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