Friday Photos and More

This week, we uncovered a stash of 30 more Holiday House Tour photographs while cleaning old files. The exact year of the tour depicted was unknown until some careful background detail sleuthing revealed the home was on Seldon Drive. With that knowledge and the database in progress cataloging our past tours, we were able to determine the images came from the 1990 tour “A Neighborhood Christmas,” the only year (so far!) Seldon Drive was featured. Enjoy this look back at the past in our Flickr album!

Holiday House Tour 1990
One of the images from the 1990 Holiday House Tour held on Seldon Drive in Winchester.

As a friendly reminder, PHW’s 56th Annual Meeting is coming up on June 28th at 5 PM. The Annual Business Meeting will consist of the Proposed Bylaws Amendment, President’s Annual Report, and Election of the 2020-2021 Board of Directors. A full copy of the bylaws is available on PHW’s website.

Only PHW members with current dues who attend the meeting in person may vote on the actionable items. If you plan to attend the meeting, RSVP your name and number of attendees to 540-667-3577, phwinc.org@gmail.com, or on the Facebook event page. The meeting is capped at 50 guests.

The meeting will be held outside and no refreshments will be offered. Social distancing due to COVID-19 will be in effect. Wear face coverings and do not attend if you have been exposed or feel ill. Please bring your own seating. A livestream of the meeting will be hosted on Facebook. The meeting will not be rescheduled for inclement weather.

Last, we have a few curated reading links for you to enjoy this weekend along the theme of Juneteenth celebrations:

Early Photographs of Juneteenth Celebrations from the Public Domain Review

Stand for LOVE: 18 Museums and Historic Sites to Learn about Virginia’s Black History from Virginia’s Travel Blog

Take Free Courses on African-American History from Yale and Stanford: From Emancipation, to the Civil Rights Movement, and Beyond from Open Culture

Friday Roundup: RSVPs and Reading Links

PHW’s 56th Annual Meeting will be held on June 28th. The meeting will be held at the Hexagon House, 530 Amherst Street, beginning at 5:00 P.M. The Annual Business Meeting will consist of the Proposed Bylaws Amendment, President’s Annual Report, and Election of the 2020-2021 Board of Directors.

A full copy of the bylaws is available on PHW’s website.

Only PHW members with current dues who attend the meeting in person may vote on the actionable items. If you plan to attend the meeting, RSVP your name and number of attendees to 540-667-3577, phwinc.org@gmail.com, or on the Facebook event page. The meeting is capped at 50 guests.

The meeting will be held outside and no refreshments will be offered. Social distancing due to COVID-19 will be in effect. Wear face coverings and do not attend if you have been exposed or feel ill. Please bring your own seating. A livestream of the meeting will be hosted on Facebook. The link will be made available approximately one week before the event. The meeting will not be rescheduled for inclement weather.

For further reading and researching this week, we have a selection of links:

It seems many people are taking the pandemic time to research their homes and towns. Atlas Obscura has been providing a steady stream of informative articles on how to get started, including How to Dig into the History of Your City, Town, or Neighborhood.

If you are looking for early Winchester Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps to help with your research, you can find them at the Library of Congress. You can also look at other maps PHW and other local researchers use to date local buildings at Historic Map Works.

Do you like transcribing old documents or going on deep history searches? East End and Evergreen Cemeteries in Richmond are accepting remote volunteers to help make their documents more accessible and preserve Richmond’s African American history. Follow the links to register for Biography Writer, Cemetery Research, or Record Transcription.

If you are interested in similar efforts to document, preserve, and tell forgotten stories, you may also enjoy Architectural History Fieldwork Project Seeks to Find ‘Suppressed and Erased Histories’ and When Architecture and Racial Justice Intersect.

AmazonSmile customers can now support Preservation of Historic Winchester, Inc. in the Amazon shopping app on iOS and Android mobile phones! Simply follow these instructions to turn on AmazonSmile and start generating donations.

  1. Open the Amazon Shopping app on your device
  2. Go into the main menu of the Amazon Shopping app and tap into ‘Settings’
  3. Tap ‘AmazonSmile’ and follow the on-screen instructions to complete the process

If you do not have the latest version of the Amazon Shopping app, update your app. Click here for instructions.

Friday Roundup: Annual Meeting Updates and Internet Reading

First, a quick update on PHW’s plans for the Annual Meeting in June. The expected date is June 28th, at our normal start time of 3 PM at the Hexagon House. The meeting will be a business-only event with a proposed bylaws amendment to allow for teleconferencing for meetings, clarify the mission statement, and minor consistency edits throughout. We will also elect the board of directors for the next year.

Because of the continuing restrictions on gatherings, the meeting will be held outdoors with spacing between people. No refreshments will be served. Only PHW members in physical attendance will be able to vote at the meeting for the bylaws amendment, but we plan to livestream the event on Facebook. More details and the proposed bylaws edits will be made available online in full and in a condensed version in your invitation. The Facebook livestream link will be made available approximately one week before the event.

Unlike past years, we will be keeping an RSVP list for PHW members who wish to attend so we can prepare for the proper spacing. Please respond at phwinc.org@gmail.com or 540-667-3577 with the number of attendees. This information will be included in your invitation as well.

We will still accept award nominations for a later event or for the next year’s Annual Meeting. Thank you to everyone who has made suggestions so far. Please know that your projects have been filed and saved for later discussion.

For your reading pleasure this weekend, we have a selection of links:

The Farmer’s Apprentice: African American Indentures of Apprenticeship in Virginia features a Frederick County document. At the end of the entry are the links to the Virginia Untold: The African American Narrative database and the transcription project Making History at the Library of Virginia.

To match the story of the plank house we shared on Facebook earlier this week, The History Blog has posted another incredible find beneath the floorboards of a private home in Norway.

If you’ve seen some interesting signs while you are out exercising or getting supplies and you like taking photos, the Library of Virginia is collecting signs from the pandemic for their collections of ephemera. You can find more information at RichmondMag or BoomerMagazine.com or visit the Library of Virginia’s Tumblr. If you just want to see the images, the Tumblr is the place to go!

History is a strange and twisting tale, and April White at Atlas Obscura highlights How the Influenza Pandemic Popularized Lemons. Without giving too much away, the article follows the tale of changing marketing strategies and timing to world events in 1918 turned what was once considered a luxury into a household necessity.

Friday Roundup: Memorial Day Weekend

The PHW office will be closed Memorial Day. Stay safe and healthy as you enjoy your long weekend! For your reading pleasure, we have gathered links for you to enjoy:

Protecting Family and Heirlooms – If you started organizing photographs or sorting through other family memorabilia and are concerned on how to safely handle or sanitize them, this blog from the Library of Virginia may put some fears at ease and help keep your precious documents safe.

More Than Maintenance: Replacing the Glass at the Glass House – The National Trust offers a peek behind the curtain for a unique window replacement situation at the Phillip Johnson Glass House in Connecticut. This is an interesting look at how defining architectural features that wear out are replaced sensitively in respect to the building, its furnishings, and its function as an interpretive site for most of the year.

Atlas Obscura offers two articles, Fun Ways to Get Kids Into Photography and Dig This: An Online Field School for Junior Archaeologists to whet your children or grandchildren’s appetite for skills useful in historic preservation.

You may also want to check out Use Online Time with Family to Record Family Stories from West Virginia Public Radio. Be sure to scroll to the bottom for additional links to help you get started with question suggestions.

One of the things I have enjoyed is looking through some long forgotten boxes and finding treasures inside. If you like that thrill as well, you might enjoy the story On the Hunt for National Treasures With America’s Archive Detective following the discovery of missing items and the effort to recover them with Mitch Yockelson. (Sometimes, though, the items are just misfiled!)

If you’re looking for a longer read, Public Domain Review recently highlighted a book Old English Customs Extant at the Present Time (1896). In addition to the highlighted summary of what to expect from the Review, you can enjoy the entire book for free online and see what other traditions you may not have heard of before.

Clowser House Painting
Larry Webb shared ten more photos of the exterior painting progress at the Clowser House. You can drive by to see the exterior yourself at 152 Tomahawk Trail in the Shawneeland subdivision off Back Mountain Road in Frederick County. You can see the other photos at our Flickr.

Apple Blossom Articles

Apple Blossom, 1959
Apple Blossom, 1959
Apple Blossom, 1959
Images of the 1959 Apple Blossom provided by Larry Webb

To tide you through a weekend without a celebration, we have uncovered and OCR corrected a number of historic articles on past Apple Blossom celebrations on the Virginia Chronicle website. Don’t forget you can watch last year’s Grand Feature parade on thebloom.com from 1-3 PM on Saturday to recreate some of the spring festivities in your home. Stay safe and enjoy a healthy Bloom!

Rappahannock Record, March 29, 1928: “Apple Blossom Festival

Highland Recorder, March 25, 1932: “Apple Blossom Queen of Family of Washington

Highland Recorder, May 13, 1932: “The Apple Blossom Festival in Retrospect

Highland Recorder, April 16, 1937: “Apple Blossom Festival

Highland Recorder, April 12, 1946: “19th Apple Blossom Queen

Highland Recorder, April 18, 1947: “Apple Blossom Queen

Southside Sentinel, February 19, 1970: “Winchester to Present 43rd Festival

Things to Do Online This Weekend and Beyond

We’re sure you may be looking for some activities to get your mind off the current situation. Luckily, many resources are being made available online to help ease your burden. Handley Regional Library has a webpage dedicated to activities for the whole family. If you’re of the historical bent, don’t forget their many local history resources available online (some require a library card and some are open to the general public).

If you are looking for more scholarly reading material, Project MUSE has a list of resources that have been made free to access. One of those publishers is the National Trust for Historic Preservation; the entire catalog of Forum Journals are available. The list of material and publishers may change frequently at Project MUSE, so check back often!

The Library of Virginia has also compiled a blog post of databases you can access digitally. These resources can be accessed at home with a Library of Virginia account. If you are looking for free access materials without an account, check out the blog post A Library Is More Than a Building for even more resources you can access at home.

Open Culture is also a fantastic place to find educational resources so you can learn and hone skills while you are in quarantine. We suggest starting with Use Your Time in Isolation to Learn Everything You’ve Always Wanted To: Free Online Courses, Audio Books, eBooks, Movies, Coloring Books & More and Live Performers Now Streaming Shows, from their Homes to Yours: Neil Young, Coldplay, Broadway Stars, Metropolitan Operas & More to get you started with their offerings.

While museums and other indoor entertainment venues are closed, at least some offer virtual tours. Check out 10 Historic Homes You Can Virtually Tour for worldwide sightseeing. Historic sites operated by Preservation Virginia and other locations in Virginia are available on Encyclopedia Virginia’s website. The Virginia’s Travel Blog site has also compiled a listing of virtual tours. You’re sure to find a new building or place to virtually explore!

Last but not least, if you want some visual entertainment, we have a YouTube channel to recommend. Some of you may remember episodes of About Your House with Bob Yapp. The show was filmed between 1996-2000 and aired on PBS channels. About half of the episodes are now available for anyone to enjoy on YouTube. To get you started, here’s a commonly asked question: repairing plaster walls.

Friday Roundup: Spring Events This Weekend and Beyond

Shamrock

On March 7 from noon to 9 pm, the popular St. Paddy’s Celtic Fest returns to Old Town Winchester (FREE!). There will be a wide variety of live entertainment at seven different locations and along the Loudoun Street Mall (weather permitting). During all scheduled performances, a percentage of the food and drink sales will benefit the SPCA of Winchester, Frederick, and Clarke Counties. The SPCA will also host Celtic activities for children ages 3-12 on the 1840 Courthouse lawn. Other activities and entertainment will take place on the Loudoun Street Mall. The Magic Lantern Theater will show “The Quiet Man” at the Handley Library at 12:30 pm. Click this link for the event schedule and more information.

The Museum of the Shenandoah Valley (MSV) and Handley Regional Library’s Stewart Bell, Jr. Archives will host the tenth annual Shenandoah Valley Heritage Day event from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Saturday, March 7, at the MSV. This free event will include two expert-led lectures, door prizes from Ancestry.com, and information tables hosted by ten historical societies and research organizations.

At 10:30 a.m., author and Library of Virginia Exhibitions Coordinator Barbara Batson will present “Where are the Women?” to discuss the challenges and opportunities tracing women’s history. At noon, MSV Curator of Collections Nick Powers and MSV Registrar and Collections Manager Lauren Fleming will talk about preserving and protecting textiles, such as quilts and samplers, and will provide insight into identifying and dating quilts. Both lectures will take place in the Museum’s Reception Hall. Those interested in attending the lectures are encouraged to arrive early as seating is limited and tickets will be available on a first-come, first-served basis. Tickets will be available at the MSV Visitor Information Desk beginning at 10 a.m. on Saturday.

Register by March 10 for Winchester Parks and Recreation’s Apple Blossom Wreath class on Tuesday, March 24 from 6:30-8:30 pm. Make a beautiful wreath in pink and green. Materials provided. For ages 18+. Fee: $35 city residents ($38 non-residents). Register online of call 540-662-4946.

Last, for your reading pleasure, the Washington Post covered the story of an amateur historian’s discovery of a graveyard in Harper’s Ferry, WV. In 1867, a military officer stated that “all the bodies of U.S. soldiers interred at Harpers Ferry” had already been moved to Winchester National Cemetery in Virginia. This forgotten Pine Grove cemetery may hold more Union soldiers that were overlooked, as some elusive archival records refer to co-mingled soldier and civilian interments in this graveyard. A grant for ground penetrating radar to explore the site for remains is one of the next steps planned to determine if bodies are still awaiting identification in the forgotten cemetery.

Mark you calendars for April 3 and 4 for the Limestone Launch and Book Sale for the revised copy of Winchester: Limestone, Sycamores & Architecture. In addition to those books, we will host a small book sale of other new and used books (including copies of Why Old Places Matter) and magazines relevant to local history and architecture. We are still accepting donations for our book sale. If you have books or magazines in good condition to donate, stop by the Hexagon House between now and April. Sandra will be happy to look over your items and see what is suitable for the sale (tax donation forms are available on request).

Around the Internet: Education New and Old

From the Winchester Star comes news of the Douglas School Alumni Memorial Wall. The wall, which is expected to cost about $80,000, will list the names of students and faculty who attended the school. Fundraising efforts for the memorial wall are underway now, and the first benefit event for the Douglas Alumni Memorial Wall will feature the Richmond-based band Soul Expressions. Tickets for the concert, which will be held Feb. 28, 7-11 PM at Handley High School, are available now on EventBrite. For more information on the fundraising efforts, contact Carl Rush at Winchester Public Schools, 540-667-4253 or rushc@wps.k12.va.us.

Digging into the Archives, UVA Library Brings Old Folksong Recordings to Light highlights the story of how nearly 700 songs were preserved from an esoteric early recording format. As part of the preservation grant stipulations, the songs retain the lo-fi imperfections of the original aluminum discs. If you would like to travel back in time to hear these rare records, the collection is available online here at the University of Virginia Library.

Interested in dendrochronology? Why Trees Are the Most Reliable Historians of Early America has photos of both log construction and the coring process accompanying an easy introduction to the topic. Further reading on dendrochronology being used to unravel mysteries of early – or not so early – construction is available at Traditional Building.

You may have spotted the article on the “witch bottle” in the Winchester Star. If you’d like a chance to see the image in higher resolution, Civil War-Era ‘Witch Bottle’ Used to Keep Evil Spirits at Bay Discovered in Virginia has you covered. More information on the dig and the history of Redoubt 9 in the Civil War can be found at William & Mary.

Last, if you are looking for something to do this weekend, all three branches of the Handley Regional Library will be conducting events for Come out of Hibernation Day on Feb. 1. All programs are free and open to the public. Check out the list of activities on their website.

Around the Internet: Learning Through Other’s Experience

Following up from our ice skating edition, one of our members let us know a small ice skating rink was newly installed at Bryce Resort, Bayse, VA. You can find more information on their website if you would like to enjoy ice skating there this season.

We know many of our members love their furry friends, so the Virginia’s Travel Blog has put together Fun With Fido for dog-friendly travel ideas to scenic and historic places around the state.

What if you could do a preservation project over again? The Carlyle House in Alexandria is getting just this sort of examination during a reception, presentation, and panel discussion on May 21, from 6-9 PM. Space is limited and reservations are required. Reservations are $10 per person, with APT-DC members and Friends of Carlyle House members $5/person with code.

The Library of Virginia shares the basic outline and lessons learned from a primary document workshop in a high school setting in Primary Sources Force Students to Analyze the Past and Past Penmanship. As many in the history fields have cautioned, the lack of penmanship education for today’s students is making these primary resources practically a foreign language and will present new challenges for future educators and aspiring historians.

Open Culture has gathered together How to Draw Like an Architect: An Introduction in Six Videos. Brush up on perspective, line thickness, and more to bring your architectural doodles to the next level. There are many other related links in the Open Culture back catalog on drawing, architecture, and much more to explore, as well.

Last but not least is Historic Preservation in Philadelphia: New Tools for an Old City from the National Trust. Regulatory changes and new incentives were introduced to make it more feasible to reuse historic buildings instead of demolishing them after the city hit a record number of demolitions in 2018. Read more about how reduced parking requirements, accessory dwelling units, zoning relief and demolition review in Neighborhood Conservation Districts are expected to reduce the number of demolitions and burdens to adaptive reuse at the National Trust’s blog.

Friday Roundup: Etched Glass, Photos, and Why Old Places Matter

While looking through our Old House Journal collections for indexing this week, we came across the April 1978 edition with a lengthy write up on the history of glass and glass manufacturing and production in Europe and America. Of particular interest may be the section on the etched and rolled glass patterns. The examples in the Old House Journal were taken from the Pittsburgh Plate Glass Company. The book, written in 1923, is available as a free Google ebook. It is filled with images of behind the scenes production photographs as well as finished products and sample storefronts and is well worth a flip through. The etched and patterned glass samples begin on page 131.

This week, we added 29 documentary photographs of our Revolving Fund files for 804 and 810 Amherst Street (plus a few from South Loudoun) to our Flickr. See the images at the top of the photostream or the end of the Revolving Fund album.

810 Amherst St.
Gable window detail, 810 Amherst St.
Please join us for this free event on October 4 at the Handley Library! The event will take place between 3-5 PM. Look for your mailed invitation in September, or find the event now on Facebook.

We are also extremely pleased to announce the fall book talk and reception we had previously teased. Please join us on Friday, October 4 at 3 PM at the Handley Library for a book talk by Thompson M. Mayes,Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel for the National Trust for Historic Preservation, on his recent book Why Old Places Matter: How Historic Places Affect Our Identity and Well-Being (Rowman and Littlefield, 2018). This special event is free and open to the public.

Thompson M. Mayes

Tom Mayes is Chief Legal Officer and General Counsel for the National Trust for Historic Preservation.  He is the author of many articles relating to, and has lectured widely on, preservation easements, shipwreck protection, historic house museums, accessibility, preservation public policy, and the future of historic preservation. For many years, he taught historic preservation law at the University of Maryland. A recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts Rome Prize in Historic Preservation in 2013, Mr. Mayes is the author of Why Old Places Matter (Rowman and Littlefield, 2018).  Mr. Mayes received his B.A. with honors in History in 1981 and his J.D. in 1985 from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and an M.A. in writing from Johns Hopkins University.