Another Great House Tour

We hope you’ve enjoyed this year’s event. More than 130 volunteers and property owners worked hard to put together this tour, and each person deserves a round of applause!

Thanks are also due to our primary event sponsor Wells Fargo and contributing sponsors BB&T, United Bank, Union First Market Bank, Bank of Clarke County, The Final Yard, The Old Town Development Board, and Wal-Mart for supporting this Winchester holiday tradition.

PHW is going to relax a few weeks for the winter holidays before planning the 36th tour in 2012. We’ll see you then!

Holiday House Tour This Weekend

It’s the Eve of the Holiday House Tour! Tickets for both the Saturday evening Preview Party and the Sunday Daylight tour are still available for at Kimberly’s, The Winchester Book Gallery, and The Final Yard. Starting Saturday at 10 AM, tickets will also be on sale at the Bough and Dough Shop at the Winchester Little Theatre, 315 W. Boscawen St.

It looks like we’ll have great weather and some fantastic tour stops. If you’ve never been to the House Tour before, this is the perfect year to try it!

Holiday House Tour in the News

The feature story for the 35th Annual Holiday House Tour by Kimberli Ball ran in today’s edition of the Winchester Star. Read the story online at (login required). A description of the nine sites open on the tour are available at (login required).

Event Hours:
Preview Party and Candlelight Tour: 6-9 PM on Saturday, December 3
Daylight Tour: 1-5 PM on Sunday, December 4

Bough and Dough Shop: 10AM-5PM on Saturday, December 3 and Noon-5PM on Sunday, December 4. Be sure to stop by the Shop at the Winchester Little Theatre, 315 W. Boscawen St., before or after your tour for a complimentary warm beverage and a bit of holiday shopping!

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 315 W. Boscawen St.

The Winchester Little Theatre
315 W. Boscawen St.
Chairman: Jim Carter
Shop Co-Chairs: Darla McCrary and Debra L. Johnson

The Winchester Little Theatre is the site of the Bough and Dough Shop.
The Shop offers fresh cut greenery—including boxwood, magnolia, and holly—for your holiday decorating. Baked goods and handcrafts from local artists are available for gift-giving. This year’s lineup includes Jackie Tobin with old fashioned hand crafted ornaments, crafts, and jellies; Sharon Boggs of The Potomac Bead Company with jewelry; Lin Hausknecht with handmade pottery; Kathy Manuel with historic building hand painted ornaments; and other locally made items like soap, jellies, and potpourri. Winchester Little Theatre will also have gift certificates available for sale during the Shop hours.

Be sure to stop by the Shop from 10 AM-5 PM on December 3 and noon-5 PM on December 4 for a jump on your holiday shopping and decorating needs. Last minute advance tickets can also be purchased at the Shop. Don’t forget your complimentary hot chocolate and cider!

The theatre occupies a former Pennsylvania Railroad freight depot built circa 1890. The hipped roof over the brick exterior provides cover for the freight loading dock. The interior was modified to accommodate live theatre performances by the Winchester Little Theatre. They moved into their railway home in 1974 and have provided critically acclaimed professional-quality live theatre to the community ever since.  The current season has had two runaway hits, “The 39 Steps” and “The Foreigner”, and is on track to set new records for audience enjoyment in 2012.

Winchester Little Theatre is also spearheading the volunteer carolers in period costume for this year’s musical entertainment. Look for the carolers at the Preview Party on Saturday evening and during the tour on Sunday. For more information on how to volunteer to carol, call 540-662-3331 and leave a message.

Click here for the story on the carolers by Charlotte Eller in the Winchester Star (login required).

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 126 N. Kent St.

The Lewis Jones Knitting Mill
120-126 North Kent St.
Chairmen: John Barker and Richie Pifer, Jr.

The Lewis Jones Knitting Mill was constructed in 1895 for the production of cotton knit goods. Founded by Lewis Jones, Sr. of Philadelphia and Albert Baker of Winchester, it was the only cotton mill in Winchester. The rehabilitation of the Late Victorian-era brick building by Oakcrest was based around preserving the original brick and timber construction structure. All interior and exterior brick and wood timbers were restored to their natural finish.

The Knitting Mill will be open only on Saturday evening 6-9 p.m. as the site of the Preview Party. Costumed carolers from the Winchester Little Theatre will enliven the party with seasonal music. Make sure you RSVP by 12/2/2011 to join the fun!

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 204 S. Loudoun St.

204 South Loudoun St.
Red Lion Tavern
House Chairmen: Richard Bell

The Georgian-style limestone tavern known as the Red Lion was constructed circa 1783 by Peter Lauck, a member of Morgan’s Riflemen. Peter Lauck and his wife Amelia, known as “Mother Lauck,” kept the Red Lion Tavern from 1783 to 1831. Peter Lauck sold the tavern to his son Issac in 1831 and retired to his home “Edgehill” at the end of Cork Street. However, he did not stay in retirement long, buying the property back from Issac three years later and living here until his death in 1839, with Amelia following him in 1842.

The property was purchased from the Lauck heirs by John Fagan in 1842. Fagan came from Ireland in 1819 by way of Quebec, Canada, traveling south through Pennsylvania before finally arriving in Winchester in 1840. Fagan founded the first marble yard in the Valley here; five generations of his descendants continued the business until the building was sold in 1991 to the Virginia Historic Preservation Foundation, now part of Preservation Virginia.

The building retains a remarkable level of interior integrity, including the wide plank floors, the enormous kitchen fireplace, a moveable interior wall in the second-story ballroom, paneled mantels, early decorative hinges and pintles, and unique flying buttresses.

If you fall in love with the Red Lion Tavern while on the tour, you’re in luck! The building is currently for sale, ready for a new owner to put the building to use again.

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 126 S. Loudoun St.

126 South Loudoun St.
Hill’s Keep
House Chairmen: Jimmy Stewart and Emily Skiles

This vernacular limestone dwelling was constructed circa 1810. The deeply recessed wood door is flanked by 6/6, double-hung, wood-sash windows with wood sills and board-and-batten wood shutters typical of the period. The building, originally part of the Red Lion Tavern complex, has served as an ice cream factory, candy store, dwelling, printing shop, and the office of Preservation of Historic Winchester. It is currently the office of Winchester Storm. The building was moved from its original location at 8 East Cork Street in 2004.

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 142 W. Boscawen St.

142 West Boscawen St.
Christ Episcopal Church
House Chairman: Chris Ferguson

Christ Episcopal Church has been in continuous use as a sacred site in Winchester since its construction in 1828. The Gothic Revival-style building is dominated by the three-story bell tower crowned with finials and quatrefoil balustrades. A pointed-arch accented with a flower motif surrounds the double-leaf paneled wood doors. Of particular interest and beauty are the stained glass windows, installed in the late 19th century by the Gernhart Company of Baltimore.

Before entering the church, visit the side yard which contains the tomb of Lord Fairfax, the proprietor of the Northern Neck of Virginia. The original church building was situated at the corner of Loudoun and Boscawen Streets on land given by Lord Fairfax. In 1827, the Parish took the name Christ Church and began the relocation process to the present location on Boscawen Street. The fashionable new church was built with the proceeds of the sale of the original church.

The interior of the church is lined with plaques commemorating rectors and parishioners from the 18th to 20th centuries. In the chancel, a glass top case holds silver and pewter pieces; one of the oldest being a pewter communion cup inscribed “Frederick Parish 1746.”

Visit Christ Episcopal Church online for more information about their history and parish programs at Further history may be obtained from the book The History of Christ Church, Frederick Parish, by Katherine L. Brown, et. al., available at the Handley Regional Library.

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 109 Amherst St.

109 Amherst St.
House Chairman: Thomas “Wilke” Green

This charming office was once part of the Federal-style dwelling facing North Braddock Street erected circa 1820 by Samuel Brown. From 1856 until the Civil War, the building was home to a school for girls run by Mr. and Mrs. Charles L. Powell. The ell containing 109 Amherst Street was later converted to a single-family dwelling. The whimsical asymmetry of the façade draws the eye to the single-leaf, paneled wood door flanked by five-light sidelights.

Holiday House Tour Spotlight: 106 N. Washington St.

106 North Washington St.
House Chairman: Mark Lore

Constructed in stages from the early 19th century on, the present house is the home of Harry and Debbie Smith. Its external appearance is typical of late 19th century Victorian remodeling with German wood siding, bracketed eaves, and a center gable highlighted with fish scale wood shingles. A half-hipped porch roof supported by fluted Tuscan wood columns covers the front entry.

The paneled wood front door with lights, topped by a three-light wood transom, opens to an entry hall with living room to the north and family/sitting room to the south. Continuing through the family room leads you to leading to the dining room, which is the site of the original small stone dwelling on this lot that was built in the early 1800s. The stairways, mantels and pine flooring are original elements from the 19th century enlargement of the house.

Harry and Debbie Smith were honored with a PHW Award of Merit in 2009 for the renovation of their home, which including stripping the pebbledash stucco siding from the exterior to reveal the original wood siding beneath. Before you enter this home on the tour, be sure to note the slightly asymmetrical facade that resulted from the expansion of two bays to the north.