Gossip Lady to Speak

Meriwether Lewis’s mother Lucy (Merna DeBolt) tells a visiting group of students all about the food eaten by the members of the Corps of Discovery.

We are proud to announce the first public appearance of its very own Gossip Lady, also known as Merna DeBolt of Carson.

Since the museum opened some 18 years ago, DeBolt has performed hundreds of times as Lucy, Meriwether Lewis’s mother. She still does Lucy on a regular basis for scheduled groups at the museum, Skamania Lodge, and other places to which she is invited by various organizations.

In addition to many other volunteer tasks at the museum, DeBolt writes “Museum Musings,” a column dedicated to local history, for the Skamania County Pioneer. Recently she decided to develop another character who would allow her to tell some of the more interesting stories she has uncovered, but through the venue of living history. The Gossip Lady remembers numerous stories about the colorful characters who settled and developed Skamania County.

“She has a remarkable level of theatrical skill,” said Jim Price, acting director at the museum. “She really knows how to bring history to life. She’s also a very skilled researcher and it has been a joy to hear some of the local stories she has uncovered. Every performance she does is different than the previous one. This place attracted some pretty interesting folks over the years and their stories are spicy and varied. She makes it great fun to learn.”

Her performance is part of the museum’s monthly Sundays on the Gorge series of speakers on various subjects. She will be at the Interpretive Center at 2 p.m. Sunday, June 23. Her performance will be in the DeGroote Theater on the mezzanine level. Attendance at her Gossip Lady performance is free with paid admission to the museum.

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