I’ve been a little neglectful on the illustrations here; sorry about that. Time’s been getting away from me, and we’ve been spending most of what we have outdoors, so I hope you, too, have been able to enjoy the beautiful weather!
I’ve taken to keeping a sketchbook again. I used to draw all the time in a sketchbook when I was younger, but had gotten away from that over the years. These days I often keep historical research notes and anything I find interesting in my sketchbook. The majority of these notes were conveyed to me orally by historians and living history folks at events, and often transcribed here from memory.
Anyway, for those of you who also draw, I really recommend keeping a sketchbook. It keeps you somewhat organized, in practice, and offers a place to develop ideas from the earliest stages of conception.

I’ve been a little neglectful on the illustrations here; sorry about that. Time’s been getting away from me, and we’ve been spending most of what we have outdoors, so I hope you, too, have been able to enjoy the beautiful weather!

I’ve taken to keeping a sketchbook again. I used to draw all the time in a sketchbook when I was younger, but had gotten away from that over the years. These days I often keep historical research notes and anything I find interesting in my sketchbook. The majority of these notes were conveyed to me orally by historians and living history folks at events, and often transcribed here from memory.

Anyway, for those of you who also draw, I really recommend keeping a sketchbook. It keeps you somewhat organized, in practice, and offers a place to develop ideas from the earliest stages of conception.



14 notes

One of my favorite things about the Ogdensburg Founders Day French & Indian War reenactment is the way Native Americans are represented. It’s probably the best I’ve ever seen. This year, they even had an Iroquois womens choir to sing traditional songs. Above, two reenactors maneuver around the battlefield. I won’t lie; when the man in the top picture turned and looked straight into my camera at the end of the battle, all the things I learned about the massacre in Deerfield came flashing before my eyes, and my heart stopped a little. We spoke a little later in the day, and he is one of the most amazing people I’ve ever met. If either of these gentlemen look familiar, you may have seen them in movies or documentaries within the last ten years.



Ogdensburg’s annual Founders Day French & Indian War reenactment, at the site of Fort la Presentation, was this weekend! This is one of my absolute favorite events of the year, and it never disappoints.



If ever I get myself to Europe, this is one of the places I’d really want to visit. This is Bourtange, Netherlands; it is a restored mid-18th-century star fort, probably the most magnificent in the world. The village within the fortifications is an open-air museum.

Photo sources: Top, bottom left, bottom right.

I was not permitted to take photographs inside the Silas Deane house when we visited; however, the organization that preserves the house and offers tours has a webpage that not only offers several beautiful pictures, but it tells more about the history of the structure here. (It is also listed as the source link on this post.)



Finally finished this bit of silliness for the art challenge on deviantArt! :)
Once again, the challenge was to redesign Sailor Moon’s outfit in honor of the new Sailor Moon Crystal series. It was fun and good practice.

Finally finished this bit of silliness for the art challenge on deviantArt! :)

Once again, the challenge was to redesign Sailor Moon’s outfit in honor of the new Sailor Moon Crystal series. It was fun and good practice.



8 notes

A gem in Wethersfield

You may remember my post about heirloom animal breeds. When I was in Connecticut, my fiance’s family told me about a place devoted to heirloom seeds: Comstock, Ferre & Co.

The history of this place goes far back; it printed its first seed catalogue in 1811. Situated a few doors down and across the street from the First Church of Christ, the store offers a wonderful blend of the antique and contemporary lifestyle. The manager, Irina, was so friendly and let me tour the fantastic old building. There are hundreds of all-heirloom, non-GMO seeds to browse, as well as antiques and down-home items for the modern country home.

I had to buy some Wethersfield red onion seeds; in the 18th century these alliums were one of the area’s prime exports and we were told during the tour of Silas Deane’s house that people traded and bartered with strings of them just like currency. I also purchased an old-fashioned juicer for my fiancĂ©, who is a fan of the cooking show The Two Fat Ladies (one of them championed her facsimile of an Elizabethan-era juicer that looks similar to the one I bought), and Irina sent me home with Comstock, Ferre’s parent company’s most recent seed catalogue. I’m looking forward to going back next time we’re in Connecticut! I’m also looking forward to planting my garden next year.

For more about Comstock, Ferre & Co. and its parent company, Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds, check out its website: http://www.rareseeds.com/get-to-know-baker-creek/comstock-ferre/



George Washington prayed here
The First Church of Christ was built in Wethersfield, Connecticut, in 1761. It is a beautiful example of an early brick colonial meetinghouse. Both General George Washington and the Comte de Rochambeau attended services here in 1781 while they were planning the Yorktown campaign.
More about the architecture and other famous visitors can be found here, at the Historic Buildings of Connecticut website.

George Washington prayed here

The First Church of Christ was built in Wethersfield, Connecticut, in 1761. It is a beautiful example of an early brick colonial meetinghouse. Both General George Washington and the Comte de Rochambeau attended services here in 1781 while they were planning the Yorktown campaign.

More about the architecture and other famous visitors can be found here, at the Historic Buildings of Connecticut website.



Not only is today the birthday of the United States, but it is my fiance’s birthday as well and we are in Connecticut visiting his family. Earlier this week, we were driving down to visit Mystic Seaport (a post for another day!) and we decided to take a more scenic route than the highway. I’m really glad we did because the route we chose took us down through a little town called Wethersfield. Now I can spot an 18th century house from a mile away; imagine my excitement at seeing this house from a distance and then, as we got closer, recognizing the name that goes with it!

So, as a sort of prelude to today, we returned to Wethersfield yesterday to visit Silas Deane’s house.

Silas Deane was a lawyer and one of the United States’ first diplomats. He joined Benjamin Franklin in Paris during the American Revolution. Not as well known as Franklin, the independently wealthy Deane came under suspicion by certain less-than-admirable members of Congress while he was in France, and rumors and accusations began to fly. Deane returned to the United States to clear his name, but the damage had already been done. Having sunk basically all of his fortune into the war effort, Deane died penniless and in poor political standing. It wasn’t until long after his death that Congress cleared his name and paid his family just a small fraction of what they’d lost to help America win her independence. A sad story, really.

There are other fantastic things to see in Wethersfield, including the room where General George Washington and the Comte de Rochambeau made preliminary plans for the Yorktown campaign, as well as a fantastic heirloom seed store. I will be making a couple more posts about these later.

For now, happy Independence Day!