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Collecting, preserving and sharing the rich and diverse history of Rockingham County, North Carolina

We have volunteer opportunities in Preservation, Marketing, Presentation, Archives,

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Memberships include both Corporate and Private plans.

We also offer “Time Travelers” benefits.

Time Travelers is a reciprocal membership network for historical sites and museums throughout the United States. The Missouri History Museum created the program in 1998 so that members of historical institutions could receive exclusive benefits and privileges at museums and historical sites nationwide. These benefits may include free or reduced admission, gift shop discounts, free parking, and much more. The Missouri History Museum will release quarterly lists for museums and their members to help them take advantage of these special offers!

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Posted in Featured, Letter From The Director | Leave a comment

Our Director

Ms. Jordan Rossi is a 2015 graduate of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, having earned her Master of Arts in History with an emphasis in Museum Studies. She earned her undergraduate degree in History and French from California State University in Fresno, CA. She said she chose to come to UNCG, “because of the excellent reputation of the program and professors there.”

During her time at UNCG, Ms. Rossi gained valuable experience in museum work. At Weatherspoon Art Museum on the UNCG campus she served as a Curatorial Intern, focusing on community engagement and outreach. She also served as Co-curator for an exhibition, Pieces of the Past: The Life of Gwendolyn Magee. Ms. Rossi furthered her experience through work with the Greensboro Historical Museum and Körner’s Folly in Kernersville.

Fletcher Waynick will continue as Director of Operations.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Exhibit Celebrates Artistry

Madame Hancock original in colorMollie “Madame” Hancock was a Rockingham County native and legend. She owned one of the first sewing machines in the county and she used it to propel herself into a first-class business woman and a high fashion designer for clients in Rockingham County and across the United States.

What began as a conversation about family history between County Historian Bob Carter and MARC Volunteer Barbara Golding grew to become the newest exhibit in the museum. More than 65 people participated in the MARC’s March 20th opening of “Madame Hancock, Modiste: The Rockingham County Years.” The opening coincided with Women’s History Month and was part of the MARC Dinner & History Series.

In addition to Madame Hancock’s artistry, this exhibit reaped the benefits of several of our area artists like Elizabeth Boles, who painted the outdoors scene; Mary Alice Collins, who painted the background details; and Richard Newcomer, who conserved the sewing cabinet in the exhibit. Karastan added their artistry, furnishing the floor covering.

Mollie’s relatives and their friends provided financial support for the MARC exhibit, as well as help to collect relevant artifacts. Barbara Golding expressed amazement at how well the collection came together as they “started with nothing and ended up with more than the exhibit could hold.” The audience on opening night declared the exhibit a great success.

We invite you to visit the MARC and see this gorgeous new exhibit and get to know the woman who inspired it.


 

Madame Hancock, Modiste: The Rockingham County Years

(Opened April 2014)

Visit the exhibit at the MARC to see her beautiful creations and learn more about this extraordinary woman.

 


Madame Hancock, Modiste Introduction-page-0

Madame Hancock, An Extraordinary Woman-page-0

acknowledgement panels 1of 2

acknowledgement panels 2 of 2

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Volunteer Opportunities What do these positions involve ?

Carol Johnson Volunteer ImageWhat Would We Do Without You?

At the Museum & Archives of Rockingham County we depend heavily on our volunteer staff. Volunteers are one of the most crucial components of running a successful museum.  When the museum is open, volunteers greet visitors, answer questions, operate the museum store and lead tours as needed. Even when the museum is not open, we need help answering phones, typing, filing, assembling mailings and organizing the office. Other volunteer opportunities include receiving and processing artifacts, computer/data entry, cleaning, sewing, gardening and more. Even with the dedication and hard work of our active volunteers we are still several people short each month. Can you help? Your time at the MARC will give you the opportunity to meet other people with similar interests, develop lasting friendships and enjoy an enriching experience. Your efforts help us make sure that the museum continues to be a cultural and educational resource for our community. We appreciate any time and energy you can spare. For further information and/or to sign up for a training session, contact Debbie Cummings, Volunteer Coordinator, at (336) 634-4949 or by e-mail to MARCconnection@gmail.com. Please put the word “VOLUNTEER” in the subject line.


Volunteer Opportunities at the MARC

Receptionist Duties Meet and greet visitors, answer phones, collect admission and membership fees, assist in assembling mailings, back up gift shop volunteer and other light duties.   Available Volunteer Shift (3 hours):    Wednesday, Thursday, Friday between 1-6pm; Saturday between 10am-4pm   Administrative Clerk Duties Answer phones, take and distribute messages, assist with light typing, copying and filing.   Available Volunteer Shifts:    Thursday, Friday, Saturday 11am-2pm   Cleaning Clean artifacts, cases, future and existing exhibit space and miscellaneous cleaning that is not part of the weekly cleaning crews tasks. Available Volunteer Shift (3 hours):    Wednesday, Thursday, Friday between 1-6pm; Saturday between 10am-4pm   Computer Clerk Creating and/or managing spreadsheets, entering inventory data into Past Perfect software (training provided).   Available Volunteer Shifts:      Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 2-6pm; Saturday 11am-3pm. Many of these tasks can be done at home. Gift Shop Clerk Duties Plan, stock, inventory and assist customers.   Available Volunteer Shift (3 hours):    Wednesday, Thursday, Friday between 1-6pm; Saturday between 10am-4pm   Docent Duties Guide patrons through the MARC galleries and/or Wright Tavern Historical site   Available Volunteer Shift (3 hours):    Wednesday, Thursday, Friday between 1-6pm; Saturday between 10am-4pm   Registrar Assistant Duties Identify, clean, document, photograph, mark, and/or organize artifacts.     Available Volunteer Shifts:      Wednesday, Thursday, Friday 11am-2pm; Saturday 11am-2pm   Gardening Plan, plant, maintain and harvest the Wright Tavern Kitchen Garden and the potted plants at the historic site and museum. Available Volunteer Shifts: Any day or time of your choosing, unless access to staff or materials is required. Sewing Assist in planning, purchasing materials and making items for exhibits and living history costumes. Available Volunteer Shifts: Any day or time of your choosing, unless access to staff or materials is required. Many of these tasks can be done at home.

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Galloway Smith House NRP Application

RK1115_Madison_Gallaway-SmithHouse_1992_cdr_1

[Historic Register Nomination]

RK01115, Gallaway-Smith House

[560 Decatur St]

Madison, Rockingham County, [North Carolina]

[Prepared by] Kitty Williams

 

May 1, 2008

 

 

 

1.  Historic Property Name

The name “Gallaway-Smith” reflects the opinion in 1979 Madison that Dr. Robert Gallaway built the house in 1849.[1]  However, documentary research revealed that in 1856, James Irvin (later Colonel Irvin) bought an eight-acre parcel outside Madison, part of a much larger property owned by Nathaniel Scales (brother of Governor Alfred Moore Scales).  James Irvin sold the property to Dr. Robert Gallaway in 1860.  Dr. Gallaway then conveyed the parcel to Dr. Walter Smith in 1873; the lot description matches exactly in all cases.[2]

In the 1960s local historian Miss Nancy Watkins, then elderly, in writing down her knowledge of Madison, described the area: “the Old Petersburg-Moravian Road [is] close to the Col. Irvin home, now for a century Dr. Walter Smith home (Mrs. Edna Siegfried Smith’s in 1950)”.[3]  If James Irvin had not constructed the house, a four-year tenancy would not seem sufficient for Miss Watkins to know it by his name.  Dr. Gallaway owned the house for thirteen years, and buried his children on the property, and Miss Watkins does not mention him.

6.  Reason For Request

The Gallaway-Smith House is a pivotal property in the Madison Decatur Street Historic District.  Combining three disparate buildings in its tripartite configuration, it serves as a significant example of small-town pre-Civil War domestic and commercial architecture as it transitions into the later nineteenth century.  The Gallaway-Smith house has been vacant since 1992 and is currently endangered.  After a period of neglect Mrs. Sally Rumsey bought it and began rehabilitation, but about 2002, as the demolition phase was being completed, serious illness prevented reconstruction.  The property is currently for sale, and it is hoped that a study list application will increase local awareness of its significance.

Description

The large Gallaway-Smith lot still includes two acres of its original eight.  The property includes overgrown gardens, numerous large oak trees, and a small stone-walled graveyard with four graves marked by marble headstones placed there in the early 1860s.  It is likely that the detached kitchen, wood house, coalhouse, well house and privy which all stood on the property into the 1950s have left archaeological evidence, as did the house’s rear, shed-roofed portion, demolished in 2002.[4]

The Gallaway-Smith property serves as a buffer between a local residential historic district and a modern commercial strip.  The house faces east through trees and across a grassy lot to Highway Street, always in some sense a commercial road since it began as the old Salem-Petersburg Road.[5]  A former textile mill’s blind rear elevation shadows the northern boundary of the property; the deep back yard to the west, historically the vegetable garden, borders a modern fence and parking lot.  High foliage to the north and west make these surprisingly unobtrusive and the textile mill actually shields the house and surrounding neighborhood from the traffic and activity of Highway Street.  One enters the property today from its south side on Decatur Street, roughly where the old Smith Street once was.[6]  Also bounding the southern edge, four lots with houses built between 1925 and 1947 for Smith family members face Decatur Street[7].

The white-painted frame, tripartite Gallaway-Smith House was constructed between 1856 and 1873 and took its current form by 1900.  Its two-story central block is flanked by a one-and-a-half story addition to the south, and a one-story addition, the doctor’s office, to the north.  The exterior features Greek Revival two-panel doors, large windows with simple board surrounds, and finely detailed sidelights flanking the main entrance.  The façade and south elevations are covered with clapboards.  Nine-inch-deep bargeboards ornament slightly projecting eaves; the bargeboard consists of simple mirrored “S” curves, with a pair being twenty-eight inches long.  The doctor’s office has exposed rafters and purlins.  Wide, beaded, vertical boards sheath the office’s northern, western and visible southern elevations.  A green standing seam roof probably replaced wood shingles during the late nineteenth century.  Low (three to four-inch) foundations, partly brick (mortared and unmortared) and partly fieldstone; modern nonfunctional green metal shutters; and random storm windows and doors complete the exterior.

In 2002, due to deterioration, Mrs. Rumsey removed the long, flat roofed front porch, leaving a foundation of two or three courses of modern brick.  The porch was not original and probably dated to the addition of the south wing.  The sawn-off tenon of a four-by-six inch wooden porch joist remains centered in the sill below the front door; the old cut predates recent porch demolition and suggests a smaller wooden stoop originally sheltered the front door.

A rear addition with a steep shed roof extended across the western elevation and wrapped around the southwest corner.  This addition has been demolished; the western side of the remaining house is covered with roofing material.  Sills of varying dimensions and ages and foundations of fieldstone and brick remain, as does one chimney, stucco over handmade brick, at the northern end, and a concrete-block stovepipe chimney to the west.  A second chimney at the southern end has collapsed.

The first period, Greek Revival central block is an asymmetrical, two-story, side-gable-roofed side-passage form, one room deep.  A side-lighted entrance and the fifteen-light glass-paned door above it in the upstairs passage reinforce the effect of a large, almost floor-to-ceiling window in each of the low-ceilinged rooms.  The openness and delicacy of this facade combined with its small scale stand out among Madison’s antebellum homes.

This main block sits on short fieldstone piers and hewn sills; its joists are almost the only sash-sawn elements, with other wood throughout the house being circular-sawn.  The braced-frame construction and cut nails for applied work are typical for the time period.  Its chimney, of handmade brick, originally an exterior single-shouldered chimney on its northern side, is now sheltered to the north and east by the doctor’s office.  The western elevation is blind except for the rear passage door.

The side-lighted front entrance, glass-paned door above it in the upstairs hall, and large windows in the first and second story chambers dominate the façade.  The hand-planed front door, with pegged tenons, has raised panels on both sides.  The knob and lock have been replaced with modern hardware.  Six-inch-wide sidelights flanking the door display a simple grid pattern similar to the sidelights at the 1830s Lands End in Perquimans County.  Between the sidelights and the door are narrow, delicately reeded moldings, almost the only exterior detailing around windows or doors; the surround framing the door and sidelights consists of six-inch wide flat boards with undecorated corner blocks.

Windows are wooden, pegged, and unweighted, cased with undecorated five-inch-wide boards. The parlor façade has a six-over-six sash window with twelve-by-sixteen-inch glass panes.  The bedroom window, only seventeen inches above it, has six-over-nine sash with panes almost ten-by-twelve inches.  The fifteen-light single sash in the upstairs hall matches the other upstairs window in size.  With large cast-iron strap hinges, and possessing a narrow frame with pegged tenons, it functions as both door and window.  Its muntin profile differs from other façade windows and the framing members on either side are unsupported now that the porch is gone; perhaps it was installed or reworked with the addition of the larger porch.

The second-period, side-gable-roofed, story-and-a-half, one-room south wing slightly postdates the center section, although it shares its braced-frame construction.  Its square plan, with each door or fireplace centered on its respective wall, presents a complete stylistic contrast to the classical center section, reflecting vernacular impulses rather than the relative sophistication of its educated mid-nineteenth century owners, and suggesting it could have originated as a storeroom or workspace.

Where the two buildings connect, an exterior clapboard wall belonging to the south room is encapsulated between the two sections.  Large rocks in the crawl space may have served as early foundation piers.  One sill to the left of the fireplace shows adze marks; all other sills and joists are circular sawn.  One joist, the second from the north, has a series of roman numerals inscribed on its west end: VI IIII VI.

The south room’s façade and south elevation are sheathed in clapboards with no beading or beveling; the visible foundation is three courses of unmortared second-period brick with the first two courses running and the top course headers.  The facade contains one six-over-six light window with glass slightly smaller than twelve-by-sixteen inches, a “flip-out” sash support for raising the lower sash, and a five-inch flat board casing.  The south block is four inches deeper than the central block, and projects to the front.

The single-shouldered chimney centered on the south elevation was rebuilt in common bond with new bricks and carelessly applied cement mortar during the twentieth century; chimney footers and hearth are handmade pumpkin (local term for low-fired) brick.  West of the chimney, openings at the first- and second-story levels served as entries into the no longer extant wraparound western addition at this corner. The addition, extending about nine feet south of the remaining building, contained a downstairs bath and upstairs storage area and probably dated to circa 1900, when tax records show the last improvements were made to the house.

East of the chimney, a first-story window has a metal-pinned wooden frame suggesting a relatively recent date; a corner brace was cut to allow for its placement.  The second-story window, placed close to the chimney, may be the only original window in this section; it has pegged wooden three-light sashes and unplaned-wedge muntins, reflecting the southern block’s vernacular construction.

The southern block’s west elevation (like the center building) is hidden under roofing material, but from the interior one can see a two-panel door with an upside-down Victorian rim lock, raised panels on its western side and hand-planed shaping on the panels’ interior side.

Further examination may show whether Dr. Smith in 1873, or Dr. Galloway in 1860, built the north wing.  Dr. Smith advertised that his office was “at his residence,” and this one-story side-gable roofed single room at the central block’s northern end is traditionally known as the doctor’s office. [8]  Few commercial structures in Madison date to before 1890, of which this is one; the others are the Scales Law Office (1856), the Churchill House and the Gem Dandy Building (post-Civil War).[9]

A door and one window are on the doctor’s office façade, the west elevation contains another window, and a door (on the parlor chimney’s east side) connects the office to the central block and simultaneously unifies the facade.  The office foundation consists of brick piers infilled with newer brick.  The eaves display simple exposed rafters and purlins.  Each clapboard on the facade butts up to a matching clapboard on the center block; there is no corner board between the two buildings but the space connecting the clapboards is carefully puttied.

The mortised, pegged, hand-planed, two-raised-panel Greek Revival door has an iron door knob, keeper, and a rim lock with patent date of 1873, the year in which Dr. Smith bought the house.  The exterior door and window surrounds of this section, alone on the house, possess decorative moldings with large beaded edges; the flat boards have mitered corners.  Inside, three out of four wooden window sashes display a rounded muntin profile.  Beneath the southeast corner, the east sill has been cut off at a diagonal suggesting that the room was originally longer.  A covered, round stove-pipe opening in the parlor chimney indicates that a stove was used to heat the room.

The office retains its original siding material—one-and-a-quarter-inch thick tongue-and-grooved vertical boards of varying width, more than half of them slightly over twelve inches wide, with narrow (quarter-inch) beads at one edge—on its northern, western and partial southern elevations.  The boards are attached with square-headed cut nails; there are no extra holes to suggest they might have been reused.

Neither An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, nor Historic and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County describes a building with similar siding material. The Scales Law Office, from the 1850s, is sheathed with clapboards.  A kitchen in ruinous condition standing behind the 1890s Pratt-Van Noppen House has board-and-batten siding with the boards about one inch thick and no beading.  Other Madison outbuildings of later date also have board-and-batten siding, including a barn, probably 1920s vintage, on a lot next to the Gallaway-Smith house which was originally part of its property and which was built for it.

After hearing a description, neither Si Rothrock, a Rockingham County contractor specializing in building restoration/rehabilitation, nor Chis Rodenbough, an expert restoration carpenter in the Madison area, remembers seeing sheathing boards like those used in the Gallaway-Smith application, in any other location.[10]  Photographs indicate that the Gallaway-Smith kitchen (northwest) section of the demolished shed portion may have had identical siding, although no one has been able to confirm this.  The southwest end of the shed was covered with horizontal clapboards.

The Gallaway-Smith House retains original interior features including horizontal pine tongue-and-groove board walls and ceilings, with most boards varying in width between seven and eight-and-a-half inches wide.  The doctor’s office ceiling boards are about the same width, but have a beaded edge.  The southern block’s ceiling boards may be slightly wider.  In some rooms the wall and/or ceiling boards were originally painted (in pale ochre, greens and a rose madder), and in others not; but all were soon covered with wallpaper.  A layer of muslin was tacked between the board and the paper, and later, in some cases, the muslin was replaced with a heavy soft cardboard as a base for wallpaper.  Sheetrock obscures most walls in the doctor’s office.  All floors are five-and-a-quarter-inch wide tongue-and-grooved boards.

The entire interior has suffered considerable depredations.  Wallboards and floorboards are missing in parts; the banister, balustrades and one newel post are gone; and the two best mantels (according to photos) have disappeared.  However, the house is still structurally sound and retains wide Greek Revival moldings in the passage and parlor, and although they have been removed from their fireplaces, four mantels (three from the removed back sections) still sit in the passage.

According to the Smith family, the single room in the south section was traditionally their living room.  The ceiling is slightly higher than in the central block, being seven feet, eight inches.  The room is very symmetrical.  One door in the center of the west wall opened into their dining room in the western lean-to; another door in the center of the north wall opened into the passage; the fireplace centered the south wall.  The east window is roughly centered as well but may not have been located in that spot originally as the wall board indicates an opening closer to the southeast corner which could have been either a window or door.  Northwest corner walls clearly show diagonal marks of a corner stair with a landing, and the attic above retains holes for square balustrades surrounding an “L”-shaped opening.

The door between the south block and the passage of the central block, had to contend with a thirteen-inch-thick wall, a thirty-four inch opening on the living room side, and a forty-one inch opening on the passage side.  A wide, angled doorframe resulted.  The opening is centered on the living room side, in its original position.  On the passage side it is slightly off center.

While the whole interior exhibits wide Greek Revival proportions in its baseboards (ten to thirteen inches deep) and surrounds (five to six inches wide), only the passage and downstairs parlor in the central block display decorative moldings.  In the passage, the surrounds of the front door and door to the parlor show slightly more complex molding than do the other three doorways.  A closet under the stairs has a completely plain surround for its two-raised-panel Greek Revival door.  The newel post, forty-seven inches high with a rounded top, was cut in outline from a four by six inch block of wood: two sides are flat and two sides are shaped.

The parlor originally had only one large window, facing east; this window, forty-one inches wide and seventy inches tall, extends by a thirteen-inch high section of paneling (the height of the baseboard) to the floor, filling the full seven-foot, two-inch height of the room.  The area below the window consists of a flat panel between extensions of the side window surrounds and baseboard corner blocks, further framed by two-inch moldings.  Interestingly, the top and one side molding match, the bottom piece has a different profile, and the remaining side is a flat two-inch board given a very rough curve to its interior side in order to slightly resemble the other pieces.

At least one and possibly two windows were added to the north wall, flanking the fireplace, at an early date.  The six-over-six pegged wooden window in the northwest corner, inserted by cutting through the corner brace, uses a wedge-and-notched-frame system to hold it open.  The northeast corner now has the door leading to the doctor’s office.  The parlor had the most elaborate molding in the house, being the one room with a shaped molding atop the baseboards.

An attic room in the southern block over the living room, the upstairs passage, and the chamber over the parlor complete the upstairs.  Under the remaining wallpaper, a golden-tan color which may be either early paint or an early encaustic finish graces the plank walls of the passage and upstairs passage.  The ceiling displays a strong green paint.  Also in the upstairs passage remain two pieces of baseboard with decorative wood graining in excellent condition; apparently protected by case furniture until recently.  The finish looks exactly like alcohol-solvent (shellac-based?) second-period finishes in the local Wall House, where they were possibly applied between 1866 and 1868 to celebrate the marriage of the owner.

There is a five-inch step-up from the passage to the attic, which has low side walls, sloping roof sections, and a squared-off ceiling covered with horizontal pine boards like those of the rest of the house, but never painted or papered. Perhaps half of the floor is covered with linoleum laid upside-down; turning back the corner, one sees fairly recent linoleum (1950s-60s) in good condition.

The passage and chamber have a seven-foot ceiling height and their façade windows run almost floor to ceiling.  The chamber also has a window to the west side of its fireplace; this six-over-six window has the same size panes, muntins, and width as the façade window but it does not extend fully to the floor.

The house’s six Greek Revival doors fall into three types although all are mortised through.  The front door and the west-elevation door to the parlor received raised panels on both sides; two more show hand planning on their reverse and the final two have flat backs.  Two thin, three-board, two-batten doors at the entrances to the doctor’s office pass-through have been reworked:  one displays Victorian bead-board on its good side, and the other has been strengthened with numerous modern screws.

Fireplaces throughout the house were at some time enclosed for smaller hearths.   The mantels are currently removed from the fireplaces; three simple, heavy mantels remaining in the hall show sash-saw marks on their reverse sides.

Architectural Context

There are perhaps sixteen to eighteen ante-bellum buildings in Madison.  Most of Madison’s historic buildings date from the end of the nineteenth century.

The Madison property most similar to Gallaway-Smith House is the Foy-McAnally House.  An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison dates the earliest portion of the Foy-McAnally House to 1836; like Gallaway-Smith it was home to a series of doctors.  The Greek Revival entrance surround is typical of the 1830s and the original house may have been a one-room-deep side-passage form; a large, two-story addition including a porch with brackets and chamfered posts in Eastlake style dates to the late nineteenth century.  The doctor’s office, once located in the back yard, is no longer standing. [11]

The mood of the Martin-Dalton house is also similar; like Gallaway-Smith, it presents a series of rooms with a low profile.  The original one or one-and-a-half story portion was in place by 1837; the top of the half-story at one end was later raised to a full story and dormers added to the rest.[12]  It lacks the style of the center block of Gallaway-Smith, appearing more vernacular in form.  Another small building, the one-story, hip-roofed Beulah Female Academy, dates from the 1850s but has been heavily altered, as has the one-story Churchill House, after 1860 the office of doctors but now obscured by an Arts-and-Crafts-style shed dormer and front porch.[13]  A building on Hunter Street, actually a two-pen log dwelling, was brick-veneered and the roof-line changed so as to be unrecognizable; the Cardwell-Black House has likewise been sheathed in granite so only its double front door, sidelights and transom hint at its 1850s date.  The small house at 412 Piedmont Street, consisting of a one-room building with shed and two-story additions, is true to its folk origins; the one story portion is clapboard over log as is the one-room Jordan Cabin at the foot of Decatur Street.[14]  The one room log structure on Nichols Road is purely vernacular.

The Aiken-Pratt House, the Twitchall-Galloway House, the Boxwoods, and the Boxley are large, two-story dwellings showing Federal and Greek Revival sections or details.  The Architectural and Historical Survey of Madison points out, “The high-style character of these four Federal houses, particularly of Boxley and Boxwoods, renders them atypical of Madison’s early architecture….  The majority of nineteenth-century Madison architecture consists of folk buildings, many of which have been embellished with details adopted from the popular styles so that they are transformed into vernacular structures.”[15]  The Fewell-Reynolds House outside Madison and the Wall House are Federal Period I-Houses; the Dalton House still has some Greek Revival details but has been brick veneered with a concealing front addition.  These seven homes are all much larger than the Gallaway-Smith House.

The Historical and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, North Carolina notes that while hall-parlor and I-houses were frequent, there were few houses with any stylistic pretensions using other plans; and specifically points out that the side-passage house was not common in the county.  It identifies only four surviving buildings dating from the nineteenth century that used side-passage plans.  This report makes another interesting observation: the custom in ante-bellum Rockingham County, apparently brought to the area from the mid-Atlantic region, of building a rear shed or ell with only limited access to the front part of the house[16].  Perhaps this explains the west walls with no door openings, in the parlor and upstairs bedroom.

With reference to the doctor’s office, An Architectural and Historical Survey of Madison says “No early nineteenth-century commercial structures are extant in Madison.  The oldest surviving professional office is the finely detailed building erected around 1850 [elsewhere, 1856] that is reputed to have served originally as Alfred Moore Scales’ law office.”  This is a one-room side-gable roofed clapboard-sided structure with interior plaster, one window and a two-panel Greek Revival door. The Survey further enumerates the large, two-story frame end-gabled Gem Dandy Buildings, formerly tobacco warehouses built during the second half of the 19th century; one of these is now gone and the other has been brick veneered.[17]  Thus, the doctor’s office is one of only three identified early commercial structures remaining.  In the larger county, while a number of small commercial structures remain, few seem to date from before 1900.  Historic and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, which also describes resources in Mayodan, Ruffin, Stoneville and Wentworth, lists only five commercial structures dating to the nineteenth century[18].

History

During the nineteenth century three families constructed and owned Gallaway-Smith house: James and Lucy Dalton Irvin from 1856 to 1860, Dr. Robert and Fannie Hill Gallaway between 1860 and 1873, and finally the Dr. Walter R. and Susan Scales Smith family through whom it descended until 2000.  Between 1856 and 1900 the Gallaway and Smith families made numerous alterations to the building; tax records show final exterior alterations occurred in 1900.

Between 1856 and 1860 James Irvin, Clerk of Superior Court for Rockingham County built the first part of the Gallaway-Smith house (called the Colonel Irvin house into the mid-1900s)[19].  In 1852 Irvin married Lucy V. Dalton, daughter of General S.A. Dalton of Madison.[20]  In 1856, for $445 he bought a triangular, eight-acre piece of property slightly west of the Town of Madison, on the Salem-Petersburg Road connecting the Moravian communities to Washington DC and Philadelphia. [21]  The land, a small piece of a large tract held by Nathaniel Scales (the brother of Governor Alfred Moore Scales) also joined land of Irvin’s business partner, William B. Carter, with whom he and Robert J. Dalton opened a store: Carter, Irvin, and Dalton[22].

During his residence there, James Irvin inadvertently brought smallpox to Madison.  He had traveled to Boston to buy a stock of goods for the new store; upon his return, he was opening a box in front of onlookers when he broke out in smallpox.  Smallpox was “more dreaded than war or famine”.  Several people caught the disease from this brief exposure, and a Miss Amos died, although Mr. Irvin recovered.

Typhoid was a constant threat in Rockingham County because of recurring floods along the Dan River. Fifty years later, “Reminiscences of Madison” (attributed to the brother of Dr. Walter Smith) reported fifty-nine cases of typhoid in Madison in 1858: “many died…many people fled the place and few on the outside were bold enough to enter it.  The business of the place was very much injured and it was some time before the town recovered her equilibrium.”[23].

In spite of anxieties related to epidemics, Madison flourished in the period leading up to the Civil War.  It was the headwaters of bateau traffic on the Dan River and speculations led to a boom in real estate.[24]  Nevertheless James Irvin decided to leave his Madison house for property in the Wentworth-Reidsville area.  From there, he served as a Colonel in the Rockingham County Militia during the Civil War and partnered in several successful mercantile ventures afterward.[25]

Dr. Robert Gallaway inherited one of the largest plantations on the Dan River, Eagle Falls; a lawsuit before his majority resulted in the sale of the plantation.[26]  In 1852, Dr. Gallaway married Fannie M. Hill of Caswell County, and about 1855 he opened a drugstore with Dr. Harden Staples; drugstores were a common sideline for doctors in this period.[27]  The two physicians built a “store house” for the Staples and Gallaway Drug Store on Murphey Street, today the central area of the Madison downtown.[28]   Perhaps because doctors could not stop the series of plagues that followed, by 1859 Dr. Staples had moved away and the storehouse was rented to the Fels family as a clothing store.

Although he moved his home after four years or less, James Irvin maintained a presence in Madison, acquiring the former Gallaway and Staples Drugstore building.  During 1859-60 James Irvin and Dr. Gallaway essentially traded sums of money plus the storehouse and its lot for the Gallaway-Smith house with its eight acres.  The storehouse netted $325 more.[29]

At the time of the 1860 census the Gallaway family consisted of Robert; his wife Fannie, 26; and three children, ages 1 to 4.  He possessed $16,000 of real estate, primarily farm lands, and $13,000 of personal property.  He owned 19 slaves, one man a fugitive and 12 of the rest under 14; and owned 3 slave houses for them.  Another slave, Malinda, 38 years old, had died before the census of “scroffolo”, a common form of tuberculosis in the glands of the neck[30].  It is not known how many of these slaves lived on the Gallaway-Smith property.

In 1860 Dr. Gallaway and Fannie lost their six-year-old daughter to scarlet fever; previously, in 1853 they had lost a baby at about three weeks of age.[31]  They began a small graveyard on their property and moved the baby there.  During 1864, two more children were buried in the little graveyard. It is unknown if Malinda is buried nearby.  Two more children were also born at the Gallaway-Smith house before 1867.[32]

Dr. Gallaway was commissioned as a Captain of the County Militia in 1862, and served as a surgeon for the 70th Regiment, 17th Brigade Field Staff.[33]  In the years immediately after the Civil War the Rockingham County economy was in shambles.  Dr. Gallaway moved to Davidson County about 1867[34], seemingly retiring from medicine.  He returned to Rockingham County in 1882 but from 1870 on he listed his profession as farmer in census records and Business Directories.[35]

Dr. Walter R. Smith, a contemporary of Dr. Gallaway’s, grew up at Shady Grove plantation, then studied medicine in Philadelphia.[36]  In 1870 Dr. Smith lived either at or near Shady Grove with his third wife, four children from various marriages, both his mother and mother-in-law, a white female companion to the ladies, and three farm laborers. [37]

In 1872 the Smith home burned to the ground in a stove-pipe fire; the family was asleep and barely escaped the house “leaving everything, even their wearing apparel, to be consumed.”[38]  In 1873 Dr. Smith purchased the Gallaway-Smith House.[39]  Previously, families residing in the dwelling had been small.  The Smith household, not counting domestics, included nine people ranging in age from four to seventy-four, the five adults all of well-to-do, educated families.  Apparently a harmonious household, they moved into the Gallaway-Smith house together and were still together, including mother, mother-in-law, and the same companion, Agnes Stanley, in the 1880 census.  Those who were still alive were there in 1900.[40]

It is very likely that the Smiths attached freestanding buildings on the property to the south and southwestern sides of the central block in 1873, as well as a front porch, to make space for such a large and diverse group.  The emphasis in the house had moved from style to practicality.  It is unknown whether the doctor’s office had already been built by Dr. Gallaway or was built at this time by Dr. Smith.  Certainly Dr. Smith advertised his services, and his office at his residence.  In every surviving issue of the Madison Enterprise and Rockingham County Business Directories he is listed as a Madison physician from 1869 until his death.[41]

The Smith family also involved itself in local politics.  In the mid 1870s, Dr. Smith was elected to the Rockingham County Commission.[42] Dr. Smith’s wife, Susan Scales Smith, was a founding member and vice-chairwoman of the Madison chapter of the Good Templars, a temperance organization.[43].  A descendant of the Revolutionary Regulator, Colonel James Hunter, she was still remembered in 1950 as “Mrs. Sue Smith, the dainty little lady with the sweet voice and gentle manner.” [44]  Sue Smith was reputed to be a wonderful musician; today her unusual square piano is owned by Triad Stage in Greensboro.[45]

After Dr. Smith’s death, his son Samuel, a store clerk and farmer, attached the doctor’s office to the house at some time before 1900[46].  Elizabeth Smith, granddaughter of Dr. Smith, inherited the dwelling and lived there until her death at the age of ninety-four in 1992[47].  In 2000 her heirs sold the house to Mrs. Sally Rumsey for rehabilitation.  Mrs. Rumsey began extensive renovations, removing the failing rear shed addition and the front porch with the intention of rebuilding them and restoring the entire interior, but unfortunately serious illness interrupted the work.[48]  The Madison-Rockingham Rescue Squad, Inc. is the current owner.

 

Bibliography

 

Bishir, Catherine W. North Carolina Architecture.  Chapel Hill, North Carolina: University of North Carolina Press, 2005.

Butler, Lindley S. Rockingham County: A Brief History.  Raleigh, North Carolina: North Carolina Division of Archives and History, 1997.

Carter, Robert W. Jr., “A Sketch of ‘Isaac’ and His Family.” The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no.1 (1989): 38-58.

________. Rockingham County Archives. Interviews, January through March, 2008.

“Exile”(Galloway, Robert). “Chronicles for the Leader: the Names of the Resident M.D.s since 1831.” The Madison Leader, 31 May 1888.

Gallaway family papers (bible records), personal files of Robert W. Carter Jr.

Gardner, Bettie Sue. “Memories”. The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no.2 (1989): 59-87.

Gunn, Julia H. Rockingham County North Carolina: Marriages through 1868. Wentworth, North Carolina, n.d.

“Isaac” (Smith, Nathaniel Scales), and Charles D. Rodenbough. “Reminiscences of Madison”, ca. 1910, transcribed by Joyce Mitchell and reprinted with notes by Charles D. Rodenbough. The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no.1 (1989): 1-37.

Kaplan, Peter and Diane Lea. Certification Report for the Decatur-Hunter Historic District, Madison, North Carolina.  Madison, North Carolina, 1982.

Kendall, Katharine Kerr and Mary Francis Kerr Donaldson. Caswell County: North Carolina Marriage Bonds 1778-1868.  Raleigh, North Carolina, 1981.

Lea, Diane and Claudia Roberts.  Academy Street, Madison, North Carolina National Register Nomination.   Madison, North Carolina, 1979.

________.  An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, North Carolina.              Raleigh, NC: North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, 1979.

Rockingham County Deeds, Office of the Register of Deeds, Rockingham County Courthouse, Wentworth, North Carolina.

“Rockingham County in Levi Branson’s ‘North Carolina Business Directory 1867-1897’,” reprinted with notes by Lindley S. Butler. The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy VII, no. 1 (1982): 21-47.

Rockingham County Tax Records for parcel no: 1187555: http://arcims.webgis.net/linkedfiles/nc/Rockingham/cards/11/118755.htm.

“Rockingham County News Items From the Greensboro Patriot Abstracted by Clinton Fagge. The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XXVIII, no. 1 (2003): 1-85.

Rodenbough, Charles D.  “The Early Doctors of Madison, North Carolina”, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XXX, no. 2 (2005): 61-87.

Rodenbough, Charles D.: photographs, interviews in February and March 2008.

Rodenbough, Chis (carpenter): phone interview, April 2008.

Rothrock, Siler (contractor): phone interview, April 2008.

Rumsey, Sally: photographs with notes and phone interview, April 2008.

Starr, Paul. The Social Transformation of American Medicine. New York: Basic Books Inc., 1982

Members of James Hunter Chapter, National Society of the Daughters of the American Revolution. The 1860 Federal Census of Rockingham County, North Carolina: Also Includes 1860 Mortality Schedule. Computerized by Don W. Hoover. Madison, NC: James Hunter Chapter, DAR, 1988.

The Federal Census of  North Carolina, 1850 through 1930, accessed via AncestryLibrary.com at http://www.nclive.org.

The Madison Enterprise. Madison NC, 1873 and 1874.

Van Noppen, Mrs. J.J. “History of Some Old Rockingham Homes”. Series in The Madison Messenger, 1950.

Wall, Joshua: phone interview, April 2008.

Watkins, Nancy.  Four Blocks of Rockingham County Culture:  Madison, North Carolina, Academy Street 1818-1928  (Transcribed and indexed by Joyce L. Hamm).  Madison, NC, 1983.

Woodard, Sarah A.  Historical and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, North Carolina.  2003.

 

 



     [1] Diane Lea and Claudia Roberts, An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, North Carolina (Raleigh: Survey and Planning Branch, State Division of Archives and History, 1979), 12.

      [2] Charles D. Rodenbough: photos, interviews with the author in February and March 2008; also Rockingham County Deeds, Office of the Register of Deeds, Rockingham County Courthouse, Wentworth, North Carolina.

     [3] Nancy Watkins, Four Blocks of Rockingham County Culture:  Madison, North Carolina, Academy Street…1818-1928,  manuscript transcribed and indexed by Joyce L. Hamm (unpublished,1983), 59.

[4] Wall, Joshua, nephew of Miss Elizabeth Smith: phone interview with the author in April 2008.

[5] The grassy lot was part of the Gallaway-Smith property until it was given to the Town of Madison for construction of an Armory.  It fronts Highway Street across from the Art Deco style Scott School, now a seniors’ apartment complex.  After the Second World War, the City sold the Armory for use as a throwing mill, and the Mill acquired additional property from the Smiths for expansion.  Eventually a larger building was built to the north and the Armory torn down.  The building is now used for storage. Ibid.; Rodenbough, Charles D., “The Early Doctors of Madison, North Carolina”, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XXX, no. 2 (2005): 75-77.

[6] Joshua Wall.

[7] Rockingham County Tax Records for 502,504,508 and 510 Decatur Street.

[8] W.R. Smith, Advertisements, The Madison Enterprise, 9 April, 4 June 1873, and 4 March, 29 April 1874.

[9]Lea and Roberts, Survey of Madison, 7, 9, 14. The Churchill House began as log slave quarters with a tentative date in the 1830s.  At some point a frame section was added to the front. After the Civil War it apparently served alternately as a doctor’s office and the home of the Madison tinsmith. Diane Lea and Claudia Roberts, Academy Street, Madison, North Carolina National Register Nomination (unpublished, 1979) Section 7, 3.

[10] Phone interviews by the author with Si Rothrock, Reidsville Building and Restoration, and with Chis Rodenbough in April 2008.

[11] Lea and Roberts, An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, 11.

[12] Ibid.

[13] Peter Kaplan and Diane Lea, Certification Report for the Decatur-Hunter Historic District, Madison, North Carolina.  (unpublished, 1982), Appendix, 20; Lea and Roberts, Academy Street Nomination, 3.

[14] Lea and Roberts, An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, 12.

[15] Ibid., 6.

[16] Sarah A. Woodward, Historical and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, North Carolina, (unpublished, 2003), 36-37.

[17] Lea and Roberts, An Architectural and Historic Survey of Madison, 7.

[18] Woodard, Historical and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, North Carolina, 131-2.

[19] Watkins, Four Blocks, 59; The Federal Census for North Carolina, 1850 through 1930, AncestryLibrary.com through nclive.

[20] “Rockingham County News Items From the Greensboro Patriot Abstracted by Clinton Fagge, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XXVIII, no. 1 (2003), 37.

[21] Rockingham County Deeds

[22] Charles Rodenbough

[23] “Isaac” (Nathaniel Scales Smith), “Reminiscences of Madison”, ca. 1910, transcribed by Joyce Mitchell and reprinted with notes by Charles D. Rodenbough, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no.1 (1989) notes, 33.

[24] Woodard, Historical and Architectural Resources of Rockingham County, North Carolina, 33.

[25] Bettie Sue Gardner, “Memories”, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no. 2 (1989), note, 87.  Also Robert W. Carter Jr., interviews with the author, January through April 2008.

[26] “Rockingham County News Items From the Greensboro Patriot”, 30,32.  Also Rockingham County Deeds.

[27] Katharine Kerr Kendall with index by Mary Francis Kerr Donaldson,  Caswell County:  North Carolina Marriage Bonds 1778-1868 (Raleigh, NC, n.d.), 50; Paul Starr, The Social Transformation of American Medicine (New York: Basic Books Inc., 1982), 85

[28] Charles Rodenbough

[29] Rockingham County Deeds.

[30] Don W. Hoover and members of the James Hunter Chapter, DAR, The 1860 Federal Census of Rockingham County, North Carolina, Including the 1860 Mortality Schedule.  (Madison, NC, 1988) 119. Also Federal Census for North Carolina at AncestryLibrary.com.

[31] Ibid.

[32] Gallaway family papers (bible records), personal collection of Robert W. Carter, Jr.

[33] Robert W. Carter, Jr.

[34] Gallaway family papers.; also Federal Census Records. A child died in 1869 who is not in the Gallaway-Smith graveyard, and census records show the family in Davidson County in 1870.

[35] Census for North Carolina, AncestryLibrary.com.  Also “Rockingham County in Levi Branson’s ‘North Carolina Business Directory 1867-1897’”, reprinted with notes by Lindley S. Butler, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy VII, no. 1 (1982): 23-47.

[36] Rodenbough, “The Early Doctors,” 75.

[37] Census for North Carolina, AncestryLibrary.com.

[38] “Residence of Dr. Walter Smith Destroyed”, The Greensboro Patriot, 28 April 1872.

[39] Rockingham County Deeds.

[40] Census for North Carolina, AncestryLibrary.com.

[41] Smith, Advertisements, The Madison Enterprise.  Also “Rockingham County in Levi Branson’s ‘North Carolina Business Directory'”, 23-47.

[42]  Robert W. Carter Jr., “A Sketch of ‘Isaac’ and his Family”, The Journal of Rockingham County History and Genealogy XIV, no.1 (1989).

[43] “Good Templars”, The Madison Enterprise, 4 June, 1873.

[44] Mrs. J.J Van Noppen, “History of Some Old Rockingham Homes”, The Madison Messenger, 2 November, 1950.

[45] Joshua Wall and Charles Rodenbough.  The heirs of Miss Elizabeth Smith gave the piano to a member of the Rodenbough family, from whom it moved to Triad Stage.

[46] Census for North Carolina, AncestryLibrary.com; Rodenbough, “The Early Doctors”, 77; Rockingham County Tax Records for 506 Decatur Street.

[47] Obituary, Miss Elizabeth Smith, The Madison Messenger, 18 March, 1992.  Also Joshua Wall.

[48] Rumsey, Sally: photos, interview and notes, April 2008.

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Batteau Shed

Bateau shed

A New Home for Batteau Dan River
Last fall Reidsville Restoration completed a shelter on the museum green that will permanently house the batteau replica Dan River. Constructed in 2002 in Virginia, the full-sized replica is forty feet long and eight feet wide. Purchased by Dan River Basin Association (DRBA) the following year, the batteau was then sold to Three Rivers Outfitters of Eden who operated it commercially for charters, excursions, and river festivals. In September 2005 DRBA members enjoyed a ride from Danville to Milton.
The vessel was swamped and sunk by the volatile river’s high water several times. After two years underwater, in 2010 DRBA coordinated a recovery team spearheaded by the NC Underwater Archaeology Branch. Three Rivers Outfitters loaned it to MARC for the museum’s 2012 opening and is generously donating it to MARC.

                                                                                                     Bateau
Throughout the nineteenth century, batteaux were poled up and down Virginia and North Carolina Piedmont rivers, largely by African-American crews. The river commerce connected the isolated backcountry to global markets and sparked an economic boom on the Dan River. Five towns in our region, including Leaksville and Madison, were born as river ports for batteau commerce.
In retirement, Dan River’s new purpose is to educate our citizens and youth about the importance of the batteau to Rockingham County’s development.

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Students Promote Slave Dwelling Restoration

MADISON—Some Rockingham County teens will literally walk the path of history this month to raise awareness of the historical servitude of African-Americans.

050714-SlaveDwelling1The McMichael High School History Club is partnering with the Museum and Archives of Rockingham County
(MARC) on May 9-10 to host Joseph McGill and The Slave Dwelling Project. McGill started this project in 2010 not only to raise awareness, but to encourage property owners with existing slave cabins to restore and/or maintain them.

First, the club will host a History Fair from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Friday, May 9, in the McMichael Media Center that will feature presentations by Joseph McGill, as well as display booths prepared by the Madison Historic Districts and Properties Commission, author Charles Rodenbough, Rockingham County
Historian Bob Carter, the “Madison Colored School” Restoration Group and other local historians.

The history students will participate in a series of activities as part of the project including a traditional meal of corn meal mush, pinto beans, turtle soup, and other dishes so that the they and the
historians alike can truly experience history first-hand.

The general public is invited to join The Slave Dwelling Project and the club members later that day from 7 p.m. until 8:30 p.m. at the Old McCollum Farm, located on 400 McCollum Road, Madison. There will be a presentation and demonstration from Joseph McGill and Bob Carter on the history of not only the farm, but the project itself and the reasons behind it.

Joseph McGill and others will stay in the slave dwelling that night to symbolically represent the
conditions of slavery. McGill, local historians, and the History Club will meet at the MARC located
at 1086 NC Hwy 65 in Wentworth, NC at 10 a.m. for a closing program and departure that is also
open to the general public.

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“A Celebration of American Music” Set For February 23, 2014

(Wentworth, NC) – The Museum and Archives of Rockingham County (the MARC) is proud to present “A Celebration of American Music,” to be held at 4:00 p.m., Sunday, February 23, 2014 at the Reidsville Senior High School Auditorium, 1901 South Park Drive in Reidsville. Admission for adults is $8 and students $5. Tickets are available at the museum, located in the former Rockingham County Courthouse in Wentworth, or you can complete the Order Form Below. The proceeds from this event will be used to support the work of the museum.

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The program will present selections from a diverse group of musical groups and artists from throughout Rockingham County, including choirs from First Baptist Church, First Christian Church Youth Choir, Jones Chapel Baptist Church, Mount Sinai Baptist Church, Zion Baptist Church, and St. Thomas’ Episcopal Church. School groups such as the McMichael High School Phoenix Singers, Morehead High School Jazz Band, Reidsville High School Chorus will also perform along with the Rockingham Community Band. Solo performances by singer Anthony Hearn, who has played at the Kennedy Center on several occasions, Native American flutist Carol Leach (A Song of Sunday), and instrumentalist and singer Wayne Seymour will also be featured. Master of ceremony Wayne Seymour, is a renowned musician, story-teller, composer and music director for the Touring Theatre Company of North Carolina, and Rochelle Tucker, a prominent choir director and well-loved member of our community insure an enjoyable afternoon.

“This program promises to be an exciting and entertaining evening of great music presented by a diverse group of outstanding local artists. It is or pleasure to host this event,” according to Kim Proctor, Director of the museum.

For more information, call the museum at 336-634-4949 or by email at MARCconnection@gmail.com, or visit the museum web site at www.themarconline.org.

In the event of inclement weather, the program will be held on March 2, 2014.

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Step back into the mid-19th Century and see how people celebrated Christmas in Rockingham County

The Museum & Archives of Rockingham County (MARC)

Proudly Presents

An 1845 Piedmont Christmas at Wright Tavern

Saturday-Nov. 30, 2013 from 1-4pm

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Step back into the mid-19th Century and see how people celebrated Christmas in Rockingham County. Enjoy the festive season at Wright Tavern (est.1816), the MARC at Rockingham County’s Historic Courthouse (est.1907), High Rock Plantation (est. 1808) and the museum at Madison Dry Goods in the former Penn Hardware building (est. 1908).

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♦ Start your afternoon at Wright Tavern Historic Site, adorned with 1845 period decorations. Enjoy the music of the season, take a self-guided tour and share in a variety of homemade, seasonal sweets and drinks. (Learn More)

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♦ While you’re in the historic village of Wentworth, cross the street and learn more about the County’s history at the MARC, located in Rockingham County’s historic courthouse. 

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Next visit either or both of the following locations.

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90px-HighrockFarm♦ From 2-5pm, tour High Rock Plantation, dressed in all its holiday glory, where you’ll be treated to roasted chestnuts and hot apple cider.

(Learn More)

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90px-MadisonDryGoods♦ From 3-8pm, stop by Madison Dry Goods where you’ll be guided through the museum located upstairs, which is renowned for its exhibit based on the Lawson family tragedy. The story is depicted in the non-fiction books Bloody Christmas and The Meaning of Our Tears. Homemade hot chocolate will be served for your pleasure. (Learn More)

At every stop, step back in time and explore the past

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 Each Ticket gains you entrance to all four sites on the tour.

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Tickets are available for purchase by using the Purchase Button below and at the MARC. Pre-Order Tickets for adults (ages 12 and over) are $15; children (ages 0-11) are FREE.

Tickets will be available at the door for $17.50, on the day of the event.

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For more information, contact the MARC at 336-634-4949 or send an e-mail to marcconnection@gmail.com.

MARC-logo-200pxMuseum & Archives of Rockingham County 1086 NC Hwy 65, Wentworth, NC 27375

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Digging for History

ROBERT UNDERWOODDEMONSTRATINGDuring the Madison Heritage Festival on October 5, 2013, Jordan Cabin was one of the attractions. Under the leadership of local artist, historian and chair Kitty Williams, Madison’s Historical Properties Commission opened the Jordan Cabin site to the public with exhibits and an artifact search demonstration. Robert Underwood and Tim Key represented the Old North State Detectorists Club. They were assisted in their artifact search by members of the McMichael High School History Club.

1799JORDANCABINThis was not the first time that the Old North group held an artifact recovery search and demonstration at Jordan Cabin. In November 2012, the detectorists uncovered more the forty artifacts, including an intact wheat scythe, a utility button from the art noveau period (1890) and a locket from the Victorian Era. Mr. Underwood gave a demonstration of the process of reverse electrolysis for cleaning oxidized iron relics from the cabin site.

These items were on display at Jordan Cabin, a late 18th/early 19th century clapboard-covered log house that may be the oldest surviving building in Madison, for folks to view during the Heritage Festival.

An article on the event, authored by Robert Underwood, is scheduled for publication in American Digger magazine in the near future.

Kitty Williams is a member of the Museum & Archives of Rockingham County (MARC) Board of Directors. Robert Underwood and Tim Key are members of the MARC, as well. Photographs provided courtesy of Tim Key.

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