Holiday House Tour – Amherst Street: Aglow for the Holidays

PHW’s signature fundraising event is waiting to round out 2008 with a tour of six homes along Amherst Street. The Preview Party will be held the evening of December 6, while the daylight tour will be held December 7. We are looking forward to an exceptional tour this year.

The following locations are slated as stops on the 32nd Annual Holiday House Tour:
222 Amherst St. — Robert and Genevieve Boxley
223 Amherst St. — Thomas G. and Robin Scully
226 Amherst St. — George and Jeanne Schember
227 Amherst St. — David and Tonia Sweeney
310 Amherst St. — Jack and Mary Dale Jackson
316 Amherst St. — James and Kendra Getaz

The Preview Party and Candlelight Tour will be held December 6 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the home of Wilke Green on 703 S. Washington Street. The Daylight Tour will be held December 7 from noon to 5 p.m. Ticket costs will be $35 for the Preview Party and Candlelight Tour (reservations needed by December 4 at the PHW office,) $15 in advance or $20 at the door for adults and $6 for children for the Sunday Daylight Tour.

For a general overview of the Holiday House Tour, click here. If you have questions in the meantime, please contact the PHW office at 667-3577 or at

222 Amherst Street
Katherine Conrad House
Home of Robert and Genevieve Boxley
Linda Ross, House Chair
Genevieve Boxley, Decorator

This Italianate-style home was built c. 1889 by Robert Y. Conrad for his sister, Katherine Conrad. Although the home has passed through several owners since its construction, it remains largely unchanged since Katherine Conrad called it home. The house features attractive round-headed windows and offers a sense of privacy with the long brick sidewalk leading up to the house and brick wall in front. The Boxleys are avid collectors of model ships and glassware, which will be on display in the home.

223 Amherst Street
Ambler Hill
Home of Robin and Tom Scully
Tom Maccubbin, House Chair
Tucker Ramsden, Mary Riley, Chris Scully, Decorators

This late eighteenth century home was built by John Hatley Norton. He arrived in Winchester in 1783 and constructed the earliest portion of the house in 1786. “Ambler Hill” is named for the widow Catherine Norton’s second husband, John Ambler.

Ambler Hill’s frame was nogged, or loosely filled with bricks and stones, when it was built, and the house remains one of the few known extant box frame structures in Winchester. Ambler Hill was the birthplace of famous Virginia novelist John Esten Cooke in 1830, and it has served as a boarding house once and a school twice, before the Scully family bought and completely renovated it. The house has a brick wine cellar, walnut paneling in the library and a collection of fireplace mantels.

226 Amherst Street
Daniel Morgan House
Home of George and Jeanne Schember
George Schember, House Chair
Jeanne Schember, Decorator

The southeast timber frame portion of this house was built by George Flowerdew Norton, John Norton’s brother, in 1786. In 1800, Revolutionary War hero, General Daniel Morgan purchased it and built a large brick addition. Found throughout the house are the original Dutch elbow locks, doors, and red heart pine flooring. Most of the eight mantles are from the 1830s, when some upgrading to the house occurred. Other major architectural features, including the staircase, room layout, paneling and wainscoting, would have been familiar to General Morgan himself.

The Morgan House currently holds an eclectic collection of art, family antiques, lead soldiers, and a cherry paneled library.

227 Amherst Street
Fred Glaize Jr. House
Home of David and Tonia Sweeney
Jenny Powers and Midge Youmans, House Chairs
Tonia Sweeney, Decorator

The house at 227 Amherst Street was built in 1912 by the Barry family in the eclectic Colonial Revival style with Italian tendencies. It was the home of the Fred Glaize family until 1982 and was purchased by the Sweeneys in 2003. They have been busy renovating the house with special emphasis on the butler’s pantry and the kitchen.

Of special interest is the Shenandoah Valley tall case clock and the Winchester mantel in the living room. Also of interest is the den which is paneled in wood from the Rock Enon Springs Hotel. The family Christmas tree is decorated with the ornament collections of the Sweeneys’ two sons, Tyler and Paul.

310 Amherst Street
Home of Jack and Mary Dale Jackson
Suellen Knowles, House Chair
Brookie Phillips, Decorator

This Italianate style home (built c. 1872) displays an inviting full façade porch, almost full length windows on the first floor, and interesting eyebrow windows and cornice detailing near the roof. The exterior has been left almost untouched and most windows retain their original glass. The interiors were extensively remodeled by a former owner who was a master carpenter at Henkel Harris when he added closets, updated bathrooms, and added many built in features to the home. The Jacksons are the sixth family to call this house home.

316 Amherst Street
Bessie McCann House
Home of James and Kendra Getaz
Vikki Lee, House Chair
Lynne Caldwell, Decorator

Bessie McCann purchased this lot from Jonah Cather in 1897, and this Queen Anne style house was erected by 1902. PHW purchased and resold this home through its Revolving Fund in 1980, making it the first building purchased on Amherst Street.

Home to the young Getaz family since 1987, the house boasts two corbelled chimneys, a hipped slate roof, and welcoming front porch. The interior retains original oak and cherry woodwork, pine and oak flooring, double sliding parlor doors and five fireplaces. Family antiques and newly acquired pieces are throughout the home.

Musical entertainment courtesy Dr. Jim Laidlaw, John Taylor, and the Shenandoah University caroling quartet.

Artwork courtesy Sandra Bosley, F. Andrew Boyd, Julie Read, and Kate Schultz.