I had been to the James J. Hill House previously, in high school. I wasn't too excited about it because "Woohoo! Big house. BTDT."
Our visit was so much better than I remember it being, which I'm sure was largely due to our guide. I don't think the guided tours are supposed to be 1.5 hours long.
We learned about the Hill family (of Great Northern Railway fame) through each of the rooms that we visited. Apparently Mrs. Hill sported a (warning: hyperbole ahead) 12-inch waist before having 10 kids. At their engagement party, Mary was given the gift of the finest finishing school education in all of Milwaukee.
We were led through the entertaining and dining ares, the youngest boy's bedroom, the Hills' bedrooms (they were separate, of course!), and the servants' working and living quarters. Despite being built in 1891, the house had electrical lighting, indoor plumbing, central heating, and a shower for the man of the house (because only men take showers). The house didn't have much of the original furniture because the Hill family gave it to the Church after James and Mary died. The house was used as office space for 50 years before the historical society acquired it.
Regular Admission: $8
Overall Grade: A
Re-visit?: Yes. During December, they put up the holiday decorations that the Hills would have had.