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Posts Tagged ‘history’

abandoned-houseHouses have souls. I’m sure of it. Have you ever noticed that a house starts to deteriorate when it is no longer occupied? Why is that? I believe it’s because when humans move out, the house loses it soul. Without a soul, it dies. (more…)

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Today I’m taking you on a tour of a piece of truly amazing history – the USS LST 325, the last WWII, fully operational landing ship tank. This awesome amphibious vessel docked for five days on the Vicksburg waterfront and I got to go aboard. (more…)

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As you all know by now, about a year ago my husband and I moved to beautiful Vicksburg, Mississippi. This little hamlet is steeped in history. One of the most defining battles near the end of the War Between the States, occurred on the very ground I walk every single day.

Vicksburg waterfront

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Photo courtesy Baer House Inn

Photo courtesy Baer House Inn

Here it is – my new abode! Come on in, take a look around. While you explore, I’ll share some of the history of the home. Let’s start in the ballroom:

Baer House parlor

The Baer House was constructed in 1870 by Leona and Lazarus Baer from an existing site with a brick structure dating prior to 1850. Most of the original house was destroyed during the siege of Vicksburg in 1863. Leona Baer (formerly Bloom) began reconstruction with the goal of building a Victorian home guaranteed to impress with elaborate woodwork in the Eastlake architectural style, made popular by Charles L. Eastlake in the 1870’s and common among the elite in New York.

If you’ll turn around, you can see the other end of this large room, which is where guests enjoy a hearty breakfast, complete with a variety of hot dishes, juice, fresh fruit, homemade breads, hot black coffee, and made-to-order specialty dishes.

Baer House dining room

Back to the home’s construction. Leona Baer, was quite the revolutionary woman, insisting on overseeing every aspect of the home’s design and monitoring it’s construction. She was very forward-thinking for her generation, insisting that the kitchen be inside the home (an unheard of idea at that time) and that there be privies on the first and second floors. That’s right, this home sports a two-story outhouse. Don’t believe me? You’ll have to make a reservation and check this out yourself. The structure is still standing and still attached to the house. Makes for interesting conversation among tour guests.

Let’s step into the hallway for this next portion.

Baer House hallway

The head-turner here is, obviously, the grand staircase, complete with solid walnut balustrade. Notice the floors? They were painstakingly constructed of black walnut and American chestnut, highly sought after for it’s durability and rot resistance. Yes, the chandelier is quite impressive as well, as are the crown moldings and ceiling medallions. However, what is spectacular about this floor is that it is irreplaceable since the entire American chestnut population in Mississippi was wiped out by the blight around the turn of the 20th century.

Up those stairs are 6 guest rooms, 4 with private baths, 2 with a shared bath. Most have either a King or Queen bed, 2 are mini suites. The upstairs, while still quite grand, does not boast the fancy trimmings of the downstairs. You see, Leona believed that the family, children in particular, should not socialize with guests until they reached a proper age, thus the need for upstairs privies. Until such time, children were to remain upstairs and out of sight. There are still 14-foot doors with glass transomes up there, but they are plain, not decorated with the fancy Eastlake trimmings. After all, family does not need to dwell among such lavishness; luxury is visible only to esteemed guests.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

Perhaps next week, I’ll treat you to some photos of the guest rooms and share some more of the fascinating history, including mysterious activity that happens in certain areas of the home. For now, this was a smattering of the fanciness of my new digs. I might also tell you about some of the goings-ons (that sounds weird) here in Vicksburg. Yes, stuff happens even in the heat. I know, I was shocked, too.

How have you been managing the summer heat? Have you traveled anywhere fun this month? What cool old houses have you visited? Curious people want to know.

 

Word of the Day: Xerostomia

Fun fact about me: I’ve yet to find a dishwasher that removes egg from anything.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, August 2015. Photos courtesy TripAdvisor.com and Google Images.

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It’s been awhile since we’ve heard from the amazing Kid President and quite frankly, I’ve missed him. His optimism is infectious and with today being the first Monday in May, I feel the need to share some positive reinforcement with you all.

We are all teachers and we are all students and therefore can learn something from this very important pep talk. Enjoy!

So dear readers, go forth into the world looking for the awesome and don’t forget to get your learn on!

I’d love to hear your positive reinforcement mantra, so please leave it in the comments below. How do you make the world awesome?

Word of the day: Klaxon

Fun fact about me: Like Donny and Marie, I’m a little bit country and a little bit rock and roll.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, May 2015. Video courtesy Kid President and YouTube.

This is a test: [jansenschmidt.com] (http://www.jansenschmidt.com)

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You’ve probably heard that expression before. And, it’s probably true.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

But what about well behaved animals? A lot of well behaved animals make money by appearing in TV commercials, television shows and movies. But what about making history? Do well behaved animals make history?

I think I have a pretty well behaved dog. He sits and lays down and stays almost every time he is asked to. He comes when called – most of the time; this is getting worse as he gets older and I’m not sure if it’s because he can’t hear so well any more or just has gotten crotchety old man status. Either way, he’s still a pretty good old boy.

Photo courtesy Google Images

Photo courtesy Google Images

But, he is a lab. And labs, like a lot of retrievers, are easily distracted. Don’t believe me? Here’s the proof:

Yup, my dog would be that last one. He’d never win a race with all of those distractions.

How about you my dear readers – have a pet who’s easily distracted? Have a well-behaved pet? I’d love to know your secrets to proper pet training.

As always, thanks for taking a few minutes out of your day to stop by. I love reading your comments so don’t be afraid to say something below.

Word of the day: Icosahedron

Fun fact about me: I’ve trained two puppies and I’d do it all over again, too.

Original post by Jansen Schmidt, April 2015. Video courtesy You Tube. Images courtesy Google Images.

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