Monday, March 27, 2017

Another Bit Of History Biting The Dust

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I’ve seen the building before, but never knew what it was, only that it was old. You can be sure that ANY building that has the cone-shaped corner pieces was from the horse and buggy era, as the feature was to guide the steel tire away from the building, so the hub wouldn’t hang-up on the corner and tear the wheel (or suspension) apart, or jerk the carriage to a stop.

It’s currently standing by the alley behind the Napoli’s and McHappy’s buildings on Seventh Street in Parkersburg, West Virginia. I don’t know how much longer it will remain standing. I saw a post on the Early Parkersburg site today that it was going to be torn down to make room for the new Sheetz gas station on that block. What I didn’t know was that it was once the carriage house for the Stephenson plantation house across and above Seventh Street about 125 yards away. That would have put it in view of the front door of the mansion, which struck me a little odd, but I guess it would let the owners keep an eye on things. In a perfect world it would either be saved where it is, or moved to an area on the lot where the mansion still stands. Alas, it is NOT a perfect world. I drove down this evening and took a photo, for what reason I don’t know—to share with you, I guess.

The plantation home, named Oakland, was built in 1840 by Judge James M. Stephenson. I suspect the carriage house was built at a later date, as the brick of the carriage house doesn’t match that of the mansion. The carriage house is of no special architectural interest that would demand its preservation, but could you imagine the stories that it could tell, if its walls could talk? © 2017

Here is a link concerning the mansion, for those interested.


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