If you would like to read about the history of my house, you can go to the page I have written about it, The Arthur Barnwell House c. 1880.
Here is The Arthur Barnwell House’s website on the National Register, and the application for historic status. The house was added to the National Register in 1982, thanks to the hard work of its then owner, Lee Williams.
Here are some kind of rudimentary floor plans we came up with when we were getting The Arthur Barnwell House ready to move.
We will be using some of the rooms differently than they are designated on the floor plans, but they will give you a general idea!
Today I am talking about the “Back Parlor.”
Basically, my house has what is known as “double parlors,” meaning that there is a Front Parlor, and a Back Parlor. If you look at the first floor plan, you can see the front parlor, to the right of the entrance hall, that is open via a large arched doorway into the next room, the back parlor, which is listed as the library on the plan.
In Victorian times, the front parlor functioned as a formal living space…a place for entertaining visitors. Its modern equivalent would be the living room. The back parlor functioned as a gathering place and entertainment space for the family. Its modern equivalent would be the den or family room. Cards, dominoes, chess, checkers, and other games were popular, as were conversation, musical presentations, charades, and word games. So that is how I intend to use these two rooms.
So back to the Back Parlor. Ha ha…I crack myself up.
What are my plans? The Back Parlor will be our family room, and I plan to paint it a Palladian blue, the same as the Front Parlor. In the Victorian tradition, the front room will be more formal, and this room will be more casual. As this home was built to be the home of the president of Pelham Mill, I am going to have some of the mill history in this room. We have historical maps, drawings and pictures, as well as an old mill scale and all sorts of bobbins, carts and mill tokens. John is insisting on leather furniture, and I can live with that! I can hardly wait!
Check out my Pinterest board for the Back Parlor: