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The Dancing Whatnot

Published on Monday, January 28, 2013 By Melissa Prycer
(/images/postimages/spool-whatnot.jpg) The whatnot at rest after a dance Its an antique, its a shelving unit, it moves with perfect rhythm, and that makes it a star of our museum collection. Valuable antiques by well-known makers are nice, but I don’t think they can compete with a quirky, one-of-a-kind item made by some creative individual in the past. We have woodworking tools redesigned by a craftsman to do a special job, and homemade rag dolls who love to attend parties with the fancy French playthings blessed with porcelain heads. The dancing whatnot is an enticing example of some unknown person’s determination and creativity. So what’s a whatnot? Let us start with what its not. It is not an object of any practical use. It was vital for the Vict ..

Reading, Writing, and Arithimetic: 2013 Village Readers Book Club

Published on Wednesday, January 09, 2013 By Melissa Prycer
It is a wet, cold, gray day here at the Village. As much as I love my job, this is the kind of day that makes me think longingly of home—with my comfortable chair, a blanket, a cup of tea and a good book. If you’re like me and think reading is an excellent way to spend your time, you might consider joining the museum’s book club. The Village Readers (/BookClub)have a few important things in common: we love books and we love history. The book club began in the early 2000s, and I took over when I joined the Village in 2004. We’re not a huge group (and at times, we were quite small—in the early days it was sometimes a “private” book club with just me and one other person!), but we now average about 10 participants at each meeting. Some me ..

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