Tagged Historic Preservation

Restoration and Renovation at the Chancognie House

For most of my time here at the Chancognie House, work has focused on restoration – bringing various parts of the house, such as the second-floor piazza archways, pictured below, back to their original appearance.  Recently, as you may have noticed from my posts on Instagram and Facebook, I embarked on a renovation project here…

The Day the Chancognie House Almost Burned Down

Like most early American cities, Charleston has a long history of fires both small and large.  Wooden buildings in close proximity to each other along with fire-building for cooking and warmth were all too often a combustible combination.  The fire of April 27-28, 1838 burned over 500 properties and stopped just down the street from…

Raby Castle – A Medieval Gem in Northeast England

Raby Castle has weathered tumultuous times during a history that spans more than 600 years, and this is reflected in the building itself.  Built by the powerful Nevill family in the 14th century, most of the exterior dates to this period.  After a series of changes in ownership due to political turmoil, the Castle was…

A Memorable Evening at Winkburn Hall with the Attingham Summer School

People often ask me when work at the Chancognie House will be finished.  (For the record, my parents stopped asking this question years ago.)  I answer that question with a smile and say, “Probably never.” There is work involved with owning any home, no matter the age.  Historic homes are a special undertaking, especially if…

Bolsover Castle – A Most Intriguing Site

During the Attingham Summer School, I was fortunate to visit Bolsover Castle which is a fascinating site.  It features Terrace Range, the ruins of a grand house, Little Castle, a miniature version of a grand house and the oldest riding school in England to survive intact. Located in Derbyshire, Bolsover has a long and illustrious…

Digging Deeper – Hoyt’s Nickel Cologne

This is the first post in an occasional series where will I dig deeper into the history of an artifact found here at the Chancognie House.  I will start with the Hoyt’s Nickel Cologne bottle pictured above. Eli Waite Hoyt was born in Alexandria, NY in 1838 and moved with his parents to Lowell, MA…

A Trip Across the Pond

There were many highlights of my trip to London, but one in particular was my visit to Kenwood House.  Located on the edge of Hampstead Heath, it is a striking neoclassical villa that was designed in large part by one of my favorite architects, Robert Adam.  Born in Scotland in 1728, Adam was the son…

A Mysterious Bathing House

For those of you who follow me on Instagram or Facebook, you have likely seen posts that I have done from the archaeological dig here on the property.  We have found and continue to find a lot of fascinating artifacts, but what you may not know is that the impetus for the dig was not…

My New Old House

When I took up residence at the Chancognie House, I must admit that I did not know much about it other than what was on the historical marker on the wall – Simon Jude Chancognie House, c. 1816.  Only half of that turns out to be correct, but more about that later. In my search…