Speakers and Topics to be Presented

BETH MILLER HALL: Owner, Beth Miller Hall Reproductions

-SEWING AND CONSTRUCTION TECHNIQUES:  What were they and what was used for various types of garments: underpinnings, cotton daywear, silk dresses and outerwear

-MID-19th CENTURY BLACK JEWELRY:  Materials, Differentials, and How Worn

-DEALING WITH THE PC AND STITCH NAZIS:  Is 100% accuracy attainable and what might you do if you can't be 100% authentic

KAY GNAGEY:Owner, Originals by Kay
-CORSETS & UNDERPINNINGS: Why were they worn and how they differ from other periods 


-DRESSES:  Types, Materials, Trims, Purpose and Dispelling the Age Myth

KATHEY KELLY HUNT: Owner, Three Sisters Millinery

-DEVELOPING YOUR IMPRESSION: Creating one based on your ancestor

-1st PERSON PRESENTATION:  A very special encounter

-HEADWEAR: Caps, Hats and Bonnets...and other exquisite things!

ANNE FOSTER: Archivist, Yellowstone National Park

-RESEARCH: Advice from an Archivist: Finding and Using Primary Documentation

-INTERPRETATION: Interpreting your Research Findings:  Mistakes and Warnings

RUTH HORSTMAN: Ranger, National Park Service

-PREPARING FOR A LIVING HISTORY EVENT: Hints and suggestions on what and how to pack for a one-day outing


KAREN DONATHEN DUFFY:Director, Grand Civilian Events

-ACCESSORIES & FOOTWEAR: They can make all the difference!



-Tentative: MOURNING:  Stages, Etiquette and Attire

Kindly Note:Revisions, updates and further detailed instructions regarding the conference, along with bios of our speakers, will be added to this page after the holidays!


Hotel Information

Holiday Inn Express Central West End
4630 Lindell Blvd.  St. Louis, MO 63106
Complimentary Full Breakfast Included. 

   Rates via Hotels.com, Expedia.com, Orbitz.com​  are lower than if I held a block of room! 
Please use one of those sites to reserve your room.  Please make it refundable in case something happens and the conference has to be cancellec.
It is a easy and very short walk to Mansion!   No driving or parking hassles!!

About the Mansion

The Mansion was built in 1895 by Mr. and Mrs. William R. Donaldson. In 1904, The Louisiana Exposition, often called The Saint Louis World’s Fair the home was sought after by the exposition’s Directors who wanted a venue that would provide the wives of the heads of state and royalty from all over the world with gracious hospitality while in Saint Louis. The Directors asked six ladies to form a committee solely for this purpose: Mrs. James L. Blair, Mrs. David R. Francis, Mrs. William Hardaway, Mrs. Thomas K. Niedringhaus, Mrs. Ashley Scott and Mrs. Julius Walsh. Meeting in April 1903, this group subsequently invited 100 other ladies to join with them.

The home boasts an exquisite 2nd floor ballroom which is the largest private ballroom in St. Louis.  It also has a Victorian elevator, one of only two of its kind in the entire world.  Its twin is located in Buckingham Palace, London, England.  The grand foyer, gracious parlours, beautiful fireplaces, crystal chandeliers, and grand double staircase make this beautiful home truly a Victorian treasure and the perfect place for you to become immersed in the 19th century. 

What a unique opportunity for our Let's Start at the Very Beginning Ladies Conference!

Let's Start at the Very Beginning!

A Conference for 'Newbie' Lady Reenactors

June 27 - 29, 2019 

in cooperation with

A Privately Owned Victorian Mansion

St. Louis, Missouri


Won't you join us for 

 Let's Start at the Very Beginning Ladies Conference?

 Please Note:

All Sales Final. Ticket price is non-refundable but is transferable.

Reservation is not confirmed or guaranteed until full payment is made.

All information on this site is subject to change.
Karen Retains the Right of Refusal on Ticket Sales

Participants Attend at their Own Risk

Let's Start at the Very Beginning

Ladies Conference


Thursday Evening Welcome Soiree with Delectable Hors d'Oeuvres 

Formal and Elegant Luncheons Each Day Prepared by the Master Chief, Leon

Informative Symposiums by Well-Respected Speakers

 'Make and Take' Sessions

Ballroom Etiquette and  Dance Workshop

Private House 'Hop'

$125 Per Lady

(Ages 16 and Above are Welcome)

Conference will be held in modern attire!

Don't Delay!  What a Rare Educational Opportunity and Special Event!

Limited Numbers Due to the Exclusive Nature of the Program


​​​​Grand Civilian Events'Tm 14

"Kindness You Can Depend On!"

​​                                                 TO RESERVE YOUR PLACE FOR

                                        Let's Start at the Very Beginning

                 Ladies Conference

                                                 SIMPLY CLICK ON CONTACT TAB AT THE TOP OF THIS PAGE

  • Complete the Registration Form and Submit the $125 Non-Refundable Conference Fee Per Person. Kindly Note: Registration is NOT complete without payment of Conference fee.
  • ​Payment may be made by Credit Cards, PayPal and Personal Checks.

You are invited to attend the 

Let's Start at the Very Beginning 

Civil War Ladies Conference

This very special and delightful experience is limited to any lady who consider herself a ' newbie' reenactor or living historian  (or anyone who wants to refresh their knowledge.) Participants will have the unique opportunity from Thursday evening June 27th  beginning at 7:00 pm through Saturday, June 29th, ending at 11:00 pm to experience a Civil War Ladies Conference created just for new lady reenactors held in an exquisite and wonderful privately-owned Victorian mansion located in St. Louis, Missouri.

​It is an exceptional opportunity to have unfettered utilization of a privately owned Victorian home with four parlours, two private dining chambers, grand staircase, and 2nd floor ballroom.  It also boasts a late 19th century elevator of which there are only two of its kind in the world, the one in the mansion and its twin which is in Buckingham Palace! The Mansion is filled with mid to late 19th century period furnishings and material culture items both original and quality historical reproductions. We selected this venue so that you can be pampered and immersed in beauty and elegance while you learn!