Manse Decorating Update

The painting and wallpapering is almost completed throughout the manse. Yes, we still need some furniture, particularly three more of those 4-shelf lawyer’s book cases with the leaded panes. We have hung lace curtains at the parlour windows, and they look very much like the curtains in Maud’s photos. The decorating still to be completed includes the main staircase — all those spindles on the bannister needed scraping and sanding — and the kitchen. The photos of her kitchen show a very singular wallpaper pattern with large medallions, which so far we haven’t been able to find; we will be investigating the possibility of having the paper created specially for us. But we do have the wood stove, and the bake centre like the one in the pictures. And we’re getting together a collection of lamps and small kitchen artifacts from the period.

Soon we will turn our attention to the landscaping of both the manse and the church. Maud was an enthusiastic gardener, with flower beds in front and at the side of the house and a vegetable patch in the back. Our gardening volunteer, Maureen Lormer, has tidied the beds already this spring and they are looking splendid — Maud would be pleased.

May 18, 1913

“We have been gardening furiously since housecleaning was finished, and I am besottedly happy in it […] …it is the daffodils I love — especially the sweet “poet’s narcissus” and the little starry jonquils. My garden is such a joy to me. I had to go without one for so many years and now I’m quite drunk with the joy of having one again”.  Selected Journals Volume 2 p. 119

Barb Pratt


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