505 North Third Street
Hannibal, Mo. 63401
Mondays, 10 a.m to 3 p.m.; Thursday - Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sundays, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.
The Molly Brown Museum is meant to inform and educate all on the roots of the Unsinkable Molly Brown.
Built in the early 1860's by a Hannibal lumberman named Robards to sell to the ever-growing numbers of immigrants, the Molly Brown birthplace is a simple vernacular structure built on a hill above what was then Palmyra Road. The little structure, 16-foot by 30-foot was but a step above a pioneer's log cabin. Built into the side of the hill so that the east side of the brick basement was at ground level, the upper level was simple board and batten construction. This meant that the exterior was milled planks nailed perpendicularly (up and down) to the framework. The gaps were then covered with a smaller piece of wood called the batten--thus the term board and batten. White-washed, it was similar to the majority of wooden structures in Hannibal, described later by Mark Twain as a "white town drowsing in the sun."
Efforts were made to restore the house as accurately as possible for the period from 1867 to 1885 when Molly lived in Hannibal. Paint and materials were researched. Three rooms have been restored as living areas. The whitewash on the walls and ceilings of the kitchen, bedroom and parlor was made by Robert Christie who consulted on the Abraham Lincoln Home in Springfield, Illinois, and the Mark Twain Home in Hannibal. The furnishings are mid-nineteenth century and reflect the Irish-Catholic culture of the Tobins. The two remaining rooms are galleries. The Titanic Room is dedicated tot he voyage and sinking of the great ship. Photographs, newspaper accounts and displays tell the story of Molly's trip to Europe and the role she played in the sinking and subsequent efforts to help the widows and orphans that resulted. Some time after the Tobins moved to Colorado, a small, eight by thirty-foot addition was added to the house. This portion of the house, houses a gallery of photographs depicting the history of the Tobins, Browns and Hannibal.