Reflections

Dismantling History: A Reflection on Salvage

Posted on: April 26th, 2013 by Scott Austin Sidler 5 Comments

 

Historic Lake Eola home. Orlando, FL. Credit: Scott Sidler
Historic Lake Eola home

This post originally appeared on The Craftsman Blog.

I recently helped my friends at Florida Victorian Architectural Antiques with the salvage of four early 20th-century homes on the banks of Lake Eola here in Orlando, Fla. We were busy removing any parts of the home that may be of some value to someone in the future. Old wood windows were removed and sold off to a house in Daytona Beach. Heart-pine flooring was pulled and cleaned before being delivered to a home somewhere in south Florida. And I busied myself removing old shiplap siding and rough sawn cypress subflooring.

It was a sad sight to watch these once-magnificent homes being dismantled day after day. By the end of the week they hardly seemed like the houses we started with on Monday. Windows and doors were removed and boarded over. Siding peeled off its sides. Shadows remained where shutters once hung.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Scott Austin Sidler

Scott Austin Sidler

Scott Austin Sidler is the owner of Austin Home Restorations in Central Florida, and spends his time blogging about all things preservation, salvage, and historic on his blog, The Craftsman.

 

The Sherburne Inn in 1917. Credit: Sherburne Public Library
The Sherburne Inn in 1917

Written by Kathleen Yasas, President, Save The Sherburne Inn Restoration Project, Inc.

Her lights have been dark for almost a decade now. She has stood vacant and endured rain and snow, falling bricks, and gatherings of not people, but pigeons. Still, when you step inside the Sherburne Inn, you can almost feel the souls who have passed through her doors since she first opened in 1917.

For eighty-plus years, people of this community -- and those from well beyond -- celebrated life's moments within these walls. Sisters and brothers, mothers and fathers, grandparents and children, aunts and uncles and friends crossed the threshold to gather and make merry, whether at dinner or for a glass of wine, or for weddings, reunions, and milestone birthdays.

The Inn's two fireplaces, cold now for years, once warmed the hands of those huddled inside away from our town's legendary snow. And on brilliant summer days in June, when Sherburne's Pageant of Bands brought streets to bursting, glasses were raised from the Inn’s porches to hail a village known for its generosity and love of rural sensibilities.

The Sherburne Inn is located at the only four-corner intersection of Sherburne, a small village nestled in the Chenango Valley of central New York. Settled in 1791, Sherburne was once a key stopping point between Albany and a booming westward industry. Since 1803, a tavern, rooming house, or hotel has stood at what is now the intersection of Routes 12 and 80.

All previous structures burned to the ground, including that which stood on the property until 1915, when village philanthropists joined together and erected a building made of brick and poured concrete. The “new” building, which opened in June 1917, was to be known as the Sherburne Inn, and for the next eighty-four years would be a vital part of the Sherburne community.

Nearly 100 years later, in October 2012, the Inn again became a threatened property, not by fire, but by development.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Guest Writer

Although we're always on the lookout for blog content, we encourage readers to submit story ideas or let us know if you've seen something that might be interesting and engaging for a national audience. Email us at editorial@savingplaces.org.

 

La pyramide du Louvre (The Louvre Pyramid) rises from Cour Napoléon in central courtyard of Musée du Louvre. Credit: wallyg, flickr
La pyramide du Louvre (The Louvre Pyramid) rises from Cour Napoléon in the central courtyard of Musée du Louvre.

I recently spotted this great piece about re-reading books that we loved. Author Guy Gavriel Kay says, “There's an anxiety I feel when picking up a book I loved when young, preparing to read it again. I think it has to do with how we define ourselves, in part, by what we've loved. Books (not only books, of course) that reach deeply into us at twelve or seventeen or twenty-two shape the person we see ourselves as being.”

Substitute “book” with “historic places,” and his words still resonate. Some of my first experiences with history went hand-in-hand with family vacations. We would always take a two-three day stop in a European city on our way to Mumbai, or embark on road trips around the United States. I know for other people that these memories sprouted from post-college graduation escapes, the last summer before work and life kicked in. These were the trips that helped fashion our opinions about the world beyond the comfort of our hometowns.

But what if you had a chance to go back?... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya is Associate Manager for Online Content, Preservation Resources at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A public historian at heart, she sees history wherever she goes and believes that it is an important part of the American identity.

 

New York Hall of Science. Credit: bondidwhat, flickr
New York Hall of Science

February is an admirable month. Long past the tinkle of holiday cheer, it encourages gatherings near the hearth, warm drinks in hand, with vistas of hibernating landscapes and stillness. Yet it can feel hum-drum, too; long past the eagerness of a New Year, it becomes a revolving door of sleep, work, eat, sleep.

Thankfully, my February wasn’t completely devoid of historical inspiration:... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya is Associate Manager for Online Content, Preservation Resources at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A public historian at heart, she sees history wherever she goes and believes that it is an important part of the American identity.

A Love Letter to the Wilson County Courthouse

Posted on: February 28th, 2013 by Jason Clement

 

The Huffington Post is currently hosting The Love Letters Project, an anthology of reflections on American places by the local people that define them. Our very own Jason Lloyd Clement made the cut with this letter of love and admiration for the Wilson County Courthouse in Floresville, Texas. Reposted here for your enjoyment!

Jason Clement takes pictures at Wilson County Courthouse during the I Love Texas Courthouse campaign. Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation
Jason Clement takes pictures at Wilson County Courthouse during the I Love Texas Courthouses campaign.
... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

Jason Clement

Jason Clement

Jason Lloyd Clement is the director of community outreach at the National Trust, which is really just a fancy way of saying he’s a professional place lover. For him, any day that involves a bike, a camera, and a gritty historic neighborhood is basically the best day ever.