Monday, October 1, 2012

Day Two in CT

The visa situation has probably been settled, but I've not heard yet what the outcome is. Pins and needles, people! But, since I don't know if I'll be here for two days or twenty, I planned to spend the first two sight-seeing. Today the P family graciously loaned me their vehicle this afternoon, and I drove(yes, by myself) about 45 minutes to Wethersfield, which is on the outskirts of Hartford.

 I visited the Webb-Deane-Stevens Museum, which is made up of three colonial houses all in a row on Wethersfield main street. I paid $10 for an hour tour which constituted of an elderly gentleman taking me through the three houses, talking all the while. I didn't agree with some of his over-arching statements on the era(mainly those about Puritans, women, and medicine), and I would have enjoyed more practical information about domestic life, but he was a good historian. I think if you've not seen 18th Century homes before it's a good museum to visit, because you get to see three in a row for a good price.

A cardboard statue of Good old George- because George Washington stayed here for some amount of time while planning the final campaign at Yorktown. That's pretty cool- I walked on the same floor as Washington and his staff. I saw his bedroom, too. It still had the original wallpaper, a sort of felted cranberry paisley. I saw two white-work quilts of glazed material that were period; I believe most of the furniture was reproduction. Photography was not allowed inside(sigh).

I love the colonial style of architecture, with the simplicity and beautiful wood. I would love to live in a colonial house someday. This was the nicer house, with a big foyer and a dance room. I figured it could hold about ten couples, comfortably.

This middle house also used to be a textile warehouse, up on the third floor. We went up the small curved staircase to see. It was pretty neat; all rough-hewn beams and wood pegs, and a loom and spinning wheels in storage. Out back there's a pretty little garden, and the weather was beautiful today.
I'm enjoying the old New England church buildings as well. They're so classy. The reflection you see here is a church across the street from the 18th Century glass panes of the middle house. After the tour I visited the cemetery of that church and slowly headed home. The roads here are very different in that there's a lot more curves and hills, obviously, that make for slow-fast-slow-fast driving; but there's also small towns all along the highways with stoplights. Just so you know, boys, the P vehicle is a 2004 Toyota Highlander hybrid. It drives real smooth and I enjoyed it, so there.

And if you've not seen enough of 18th Century coolness in this post, check out this really neat striped gown.


Duff said...

I like hearing you talk about architecture.

The Marchioness said...

Oh, yes, my astute architectural observations: "I like this house because it is old" and "I like this church because it is pretty!"

wtg00dw said...

I read a study once that concluded that if George had actualy spent even one night in every place with a plaque touting as much, he would still be alive today.

(Just a little historical/tourism perspective from your friend and fellow history aficionado.)

The Marchioness said...

Hmmmm.... well, it seemed reasonable. Have you heard of Silas Deane before? I remember reading a little about him but not much. It was his house I saw, and he was one of the first American ambassadors to France. The tour guide said he died mysteriously and his body was never found.

wtg00dw said...

Maybe Silas Deane discovered George Washington's secret of eternal life and is this very day, staying in various homes throughout New England leaving plaques behind to commemorate his longevity. Could be.

The Marchioness said...

That is a very creepy thought!