Preservation Photos #176

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Goolrick’s Drugs in Fredericksburg, VA. A modern drugstore, a soda fountain, food, household items –  since 1863!

Books, Brick Buildings & Backroads

Certain places will always tug at our hearts, filled with nostalgia, good memories, and chapters in the book of our lives that answer questions like: how did we become who we are? What has shaped us over the years? Where were we before this? These are places that may seem far away from the present, but if you stepped into them, memories would flood back to you. These are places that mean so much to us, places you will never forget and don’t want to forget.

Kenmore Plantation: where I spent many mornings cleaning the plaster ceiling with dental tools and toothbrushes.

Kenmore Plantation: where I spent many mornings cleaning the plaster ceiling with dental tools and toothbrushes.

Mary Washington College, dear in my heart.

Mary Washington College, dear in my heart.

Fredericksburg, VA.

Fredericksburg, VA.

Fredericksburg, Virginia, particularly the University of Mary Washington, is one of those places to me. It’s a chapter in my life that I keep with me still (hello, flamingos!) and cherish. Sure, the day to day worries of school exams and track meets and other issues have faded, but the brick lined campus walk, the historic preservation department, the streets that I’d walk or run everyday are embedded in my heart. Whether coffee at Hyperion Espresso, sleepless nights in the drafting lab or computer lab, learning from our professors, or admiring the beautiful historic buildings of Fredericksburg, Mary Washington represents my formative years as a historic preservationist (though I must have been one before I arrived) and it’s where the flamingos first flocked together, a group of intelligent, beautiful women whose bonds mean the world to me.

Flamingos flocked here.

Flamingos flocked here.

Hyperion Espresso in downtown Fredericksburg.

Hyperion Espresso in downtown Fredericksburg.

A visit to Hyperion Espresso.

A visit to Hyperion Espresso.

Suffice to say, when I was invited to be a part of the Center for Historic Preservation’s book prize jury, I was elated, honored and happy to be a part of Mary Washington in a different sphere (as a professional colleague instead of student). This included reading 17 books over the past few months, but it also entailed a springtime visit to Virginia, preservation chatter and scholarship, catching up with professors, meeting fellow preservationists, and visiting some of my favorite people. As evident by the photographs, Mr. Stilts came along for the ride, all in the name of Preservation in Pink entertainment.

The stack of book prize nominations.

See my challenge: The stack of book prize nominations.

Downtown Fredericksburg, VA.

Downtown Fredericksburg, VA.

I realized I was strolling the streets of Fredericksburg with Mr. Stilts peaking out of my bag -- totally not posed!

I realized I was strolling the streets of Fredericksburg with Mr. Stilts peaking out of my bag — totally not posed!

The book prize will be announced in May, so I can’t say anything about it now. I will note that the morning sun in the preservation conference room with coffee, stacks of books and good company made for an excellent segment of my Virginia weekend.

Strolling down campus walk at Mary Washington.

Strolling down campus walk at Mary Washington.

Following a stay in Fredericksburg, my sights were set on rural Hanover county, exploring on a sunny day and arriving at Ali & Hume’s in time for a flamingo mini-reunion evening. {If you revisit that post, the house has come a long way!} The roads to Ali’s were narrow and winding, and brought fond memories of learning Virginia architecture. The landscape struck me: large fields, farmhouses set in a cluster of trees far from the road. Small vernacular and modern houses are brick clad, as is typical Virginia. This was a good reminder of regional architecture. Vermont’s houses are often lined close to the roadway, valleys are deep, mountains reach high and roads follow waterways. Weatherboard is more common than brick in Vermont, storm windows are necessary, and gable front is a common form.

Driving in rural Virginia.

Driving in rural Virginia.

Narrow tree lined roads.

Narrow tree lined roads (blurry, sorry!)

Aside from visual reminders, the quiet rural night brought back memories. Lying in bed in the early hours of the morning, the sound of the nearby freight train rattled on the tracks, carrying across the fields near Ali & Hume’s house. I remembered how the sound carries differently when not in the mountains. And the railroad brings memories of Southern Pines, traveling by train along the east coast (various trips), and living in houses that physically shook when the freight trains passed through town. But that night I felt contently comforted by the rattling lull floating through the fields, lucky to be in the company of preservation friends who are so lovingly working on their Virginia home.

Dinnertime scenery in Hanover County.

Dinnertime scenery in Hanover County.


Flamingos, friends, books, coffee, preservation, winding roads, good food and some exploring in the sun. How could a weekend be any better?
Time to leave Virginia, flying back to Vermont.

Time to leave Virginia, flying back to Vermont.


Thank you Virginia for a lovely stay. See you soon.

More of Carl’s

It’s summer; it’s hot, raining, humid, sunny, cloudy — basically everything in the Lake Champlain Valley. We even had an earthquake here (and it’s all the radio hosts can talk about). I digress. Anyway, even with the crazy weather patterns passing over the lake, it is undeniably summer in Vermont. Traveling for work on country roads, I often pass farm stands and ice cream stands and it makes me want ice cream, of course. So, I thought I’d share some more photos of the famous Carl’s Ice Cream in Fredericksburg, VA (which was featured for Preservation Photos #37).  After all, what is more summery than a roadside ice cream stand on a hot day? Enjoy!

Quite the popular spot on Princess Anne Street in Fredericksburg.

Front elevation -- note the flamingos and friends.

I have a compulsive urge to photograph roadside stands.

Choose your ice cream!

The ice cream cone glows neon at night.

Ice cream machines!

Or, have a milkshake.

Ghost Walk

If you’re in the Fredericksburg, VA area and in the mood for some Halloween fun, head to Market Square in downtown Fredericksburg for the 25th annual Ghost Walk, run and hosted by the University of Mary Washington’s Historic Preservation Club.

Check out the UMW Press Release:

The University of Mary Washington Historic Preservation Club will host the 25th annual Ghost Walk on Friday, October 23 and Saturday, October 24.

The haunted tours of downtown Fredericksburg will leave every 10 minutes from Market Square on the corner of Princess Anne and William streets. The first hour of each night will consist of children’s tours where the ghosts are friendlier, and children are encouraged to wear Halloween costumes and trick-or-treat at each site. Throughout the evening, children’s games and refreshments will be available in Market Square.

The tours run from 6 to 10 p.m. on Friday and from 5 to 10 p.m. on Saturday. The hour-and-a-half long tours stop at about a dozen sites throughout historic Fredericksburg, including the Masonic Cemetery, Hugh Mercer Apothecary Shop and Kenmore Plantation. Members of the Historic Preservation Club and other UMW students act out stories based on the book “The Ghosts of Fredericksburg and Other Environs” by L.B. Taylor Jr.

Reservations are highly recommended and can be made in advance by email at umwghostwalk@gmail.com, or tickets can be purchased the night of the tour at Market Square. The cost is $6 for adults and $4 for children age 13 and under. Children age 5 and under are free. A group rate of $5 per person is available for 10 or more people. For more information or to register, call the Historic Preservation Club at (540) 654-1315.

News release prepared by Megan Eichenberg

Ghost Walk is always fun, for the actors, the tour guides, and the guests. Tour guides, actors, and organizers are all UMW students. It’s a huge event in the community. In 2004 and 2005, I was a co-chair for Ghost Walk and the event remains one of my favorite Preservation Club memories. Ghost Walk is definitely worth your time and it’s a fun way to learn some area history. Wear good walking shoes!