Riverview, New Brunswick
October 3, 2006
Your tour begins in the parlour with its Gilbert Stuart portraits of Moses Myers and his wife. The dining room, with its neo-classical decoration was added shortly after the original construction as Myers discovered that his family (Nine of his twelve children would survive into adulthood.) was outstripping the home’s capacity to house them comfortably.
From the adjoining music room with its harp and spinet, we mount the stairs to the bedrooms above. There is still restoration underway upstairs, but there is access to one of the children’s bedrooms, the owners’ bedroom and a study. We found that the most interesting exhibit in the house may have been three suits once worn by Mr. Myers including one with doeskin breeches. Your visit to the house ends in a kitchen restored to the early 19th century. It contains a number of interesting artifacts.
We are told the story of a man of principle. Bankrupt by the Embargo Act in 1816, with his ships tied to Norfolk piers, Myers was told he could avoid debtors’ prison by trafficking in slaves or opium. He refused. He was never able to rebuild his fortune, but when he died, he had cleared his debts.
Information: Your tour of the house will begin in the Freemason Street Reception Center at 401 East Freemason Street. Parking is available in the MacArthur Center immediately behind; if you park in the north parking lot you can exit on foot immediately to the Reception. There is a short film available on the history of Norfolk and a gift shop. Admission (adult, 2006 - $5.00).
From journal Wasting Away in Virginia Beach