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INSIDE THE STEPHENSON HOUSE - July 26, 2006

Hi! Henry the Stephenson House mouse is back again. Hey, have you all noticed the broomcorn in the garden? This mouse sees the corn as being very tall with really neat tassels at the very tiptop. Gardener Bob explained how only the tassel part is used to make a broom and if all our corn were used, it would probably make only one good-sized broom. The broom is made by cutting off the tassels, the little seeds are removed and the tassels are lashed around a strong tree branch or pole. And, viola, a broom is made!
Bob said in the old days they used animal sinew or muscle for lashing. Henry thinks when an animal was butchered long ago nothing was wasted! The little seeds were saved for next years planting but they were mighty good to eat. Surely no one will miss those that Ol' Henry eats here at "my" house.


The tomatoes are starting to ripen, the okra should be ready very soon and the grapes are looking like a bumper crop. Our good gardeners have produced a productive garden that is appreciated by everyone.
Ol' Henry has always said that so many good things have happened for Col. Ben's house that the success was "just meant to be." Well, there has been another "just meant to be". Through the generosity of a lovely lady named Julie, a portrait of Col. Ben's mother, Mary Reed Stephenson, was recently hung in the master bedroom. And, also recently obtained is an old, old glass bowl that belonged to Col. Ben's mother. It was placed on the dining room table where it is adding a nice glow. Julie is related to Col. Ben through his sister Isabella Stephenson who married John Boyd. The Boyd's are very proud of the Stephenson name and have carried it through to this generation. Stephenson is the middle name of Julie's son.


We can all be thankful for the sentimental Boyd women who stored the portrait and bowl after Mary's death in 1828. The portrait was painted in the early 1800's and the bowl is awaiting appraisal on its age. For various reasons this old mouse believes the bowl could date back to the 1700's. We shall see, I am just a mouse, ya' know!
Julie was discovered during the search for Ben's family history. As Henry says, it was meant to be! Karen reached this wonderful woman who quickly became a friend of the Stephenson House. Our friend Julie believes that old family treasures are put to best use by being placed where they are appreciated the most. Her decision to place hers at the Stephenson House is appreciated by all. Your generosity has provided us with our most valuable antiques! Thank you, thank you!


Ol' Henry misses hearing busy Erin running up and down the stairs of "my" house. Erin is going to be a new mother! Erin is at home where she and her husband are awaiting the birth of their little girl. In the meantime, The Friends are very fortunate to have Elizabeth B. on board to help Director RoxAnn with tours and daily activities. Henry loves listening to Elizabeth B. give a tour.


Ol' Henry has noticed that the Lamb's Ear planted by the path to the privy is thriving. This herb was looking kinda' weak but Jim just knew it would do fine and he was right! The old story is that Lamb's Ear was planted along the privy path because the leaves reflected the moonlight and led the way to the privy. Well Vicki, the herb lady, tells another story that makes sense. She says that the soft Lamb's Ear leafs were used as toilet paper! Ol' Henry thinks the folks picked what they needed on the way to the privy!! You know they did not have a Sears Roebuck catalog! Vickie and other folks like her have done so much research and have so much information to share. The Stephenson House is so lucky to know people like Vickie!
During the recent storms there was a lot of wind, rain and darkness around "my" house so Ol' Henry just did a lot of sleeping. So, now is the time to get going and go outside to check out the property! Ol' Henry would be a lucky guy if he found a bag of his very favorite corn chips in the alley. Please cross your fingers for me!


See ya' later,
Henry





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