December 17, 2005
Even if you have never read a word of Hemingway, the Hemingway-Pfeiffer Museum is a great glimpse into the life of this literary giant’s family life during the 1930s. The main museum is housed in the home of the Pfeiffer family, who became the in-laws of Ernest when he married their daughter Pauline Pfeiffer, his second wife. Her parents, Paul and Mary Pfeiffer, were prominent citizens of northeast Arkansas and owned more that 60,000 acres of land. The house is a great display of the '20s and '30s lifestyle of the wealthy Pfeiffer family. Many of the furnishing are the same ones used by the Pfeiffer’s during their ownership of the home.
The museum guided tour consists of the Pfeiffer home and the converted carriage house, also know as “the barn studio.” Several notorious things happened in this barn studio. Writing being the main activity, poker nights also went on in the barn. It once caught on fire and burned portions of the “A Farewell to Arms” manuscript. He also wrote several short stories in the barn studio. The Pfeiffer’s lived here during the depression. They bought all the quilts any lady came by to sell during the time. Tons of great hand-sewn quilts were found in the house after their departure. They museum currently conducts a quilt festival and a creative writing retreat during the year as a celebration of these things.
Admission is currently $5 per person, $3 for seniors and $3 per person for groups of 10 (reservations suggested) or more. For current hours and information about guided tours, call (870) 598-3487. The website is http://hemingway.astate.edu/index.html.
From journal Did Ernest Hemingway really live in Piggott, AR?