NEW CASTLE NEWS, THURSDAY, OCTOBER 17, 1946 • 5 Know* youb JtePiloomi By Author «/ Early American Furniture Makers Story of American Furniture Collecting Antiques in America •Keg 0. 8. Pit. OS. Pennsylvania Farmhouse Ornaments ABOUT 1683, a group of refugees from the Rhine Valley arrived in Philadelphia. Though they were of mixed ancestry, the fact that they sailed from Rotterdam, caused them to be classified as Dutch. They settled in the south eastern portion of the Province of Pennsylvania and became a closely knit group. Their lan guage was German, their tra ditions and culture that of the fertile Valley they had left he- hind. Their harsh religious .be liefs discouraged worldly pleas ures and personal adornment. They brought few material possessions, but they were hard working and thrifty. They pros pered from the first and before the middle of the 18th Century, comfortable farm buildings and fat cattle testified to their in dustry. Folk arts flourished with them and through these they ex pressed their love of color and of nature. Among these were chalk figurines. Made primarily to adorn the fireplace shelves of their farmhouses, they were in expensive, colorful and reflected life as these people saw it daily. Making them was one of the techniques brought by later emi grants, from the Rhine Valley. For the origin of chalk figurines, which were not made of chalk at all but of plaster of Paris, stem med back to northen Italy. There in the early 18th Century, a folk art began of making religious figures or groups from plaster of Paris in molds and decorating them with garish colors. This idea traveled up the Danube Val ley into the Counties Palatine and finally to the Pennsylvania Dutch settlement in America. These German-speaking colo nists, however, were strongly Protestant—Lutheran, Dunkard, Mennonites and Amish. So their plaster figures, except for a few examples depicting the Cruci fixion, lost any sacred character and became representations of the life around them. Some early ones were portrait busts of fa mous Americans, notably Wash ington and General von Steuben. They are among the rarities to day. The pottery figures of Stafford shire also influenced these chalks, especially during the early years of the Victorian era, and the Pennsylvania Dutch were partial to the imported pieces. But the chalks could be produced and sold for a fraction of even local pottery figures. Chalks required no dipping for glaze and color, no firing in a kiln. They were cast in half-molds and cemented together when dry to form the desired figure, after which they were colored. With the earlier ones a coat of sizing was applied to close the pores of the plaster. Then the piece was decorated by hand with oil paints. Later, the coat of sizing was omitted and the coloring was done with pig ments dissolved in water. Larger pieces of more intricate modeling, such as representa tions of houses, portrait busts, fruit, flower and foliage groups were usually cast as a single piece. To give them weight, the hollow interior was filled with cheaper clay after which the flat bottom of plaster of Paris was applied. Among the more am bitious designs was a watch hold er. Resting on a base similar to altar steps was a niche flanked by classic columns and above it a circular element or arch with an opening in which a large silver watch could be placed, clearly a survival of the original religious shrine. With the Penn sylvania Dutch chalks, however, instead of the sacred figure, that of a child, a small bust, a bird, or some domestic animal was substituted. Pennsylvania Dutch chalks were made as late as the 1880s and probably as early as the mid- 18th Century but because of their fragile nature, surviving pieces do not date much before 1850. Their makers are unknown and so is their method of distribution. Even the molds in which they were formed seem to have van ished. Today owners of old houses in the country favor them for the same reasons as did their original owners, colorful bits of decoration for the home. Report Results of Scout Fund Drive Three of the four local com munities of District III, Fenimore Cooper Council of the Boy Scouts of America, have contributed more than was raised last year, it was reported yesterday by the chairmen in charge of the drive in Pleasantville, Chappaqua, Hawthorne and Thornwood, and the workers in all four localities are pressing to complete the drive this week. $864.50 was reported by Herbert T. Henzel, Chappaqua chairman, toward the local goal of $1,400 in returns from only seventeen of the thirty-six Chappaqua can vassers. Mr. Henzel revealed that Chappaqua last year contributed $975 and declared that the 1946 goal would foe reached. For all four communities $2,- 611.50 has been collected by more than one hundred canvassers as compared with $2,583 final col lections last year. This year's goal is $3,650, District Ill's share in the Council's budget. The lar ger figure reflects rising costs and greater need for Scouting activity in the District which is one of the five of Fenimore Cooper Council serving more than 300 boys of Scout and Cub age in the four local communi ties. Huge Selection! DOLLS ffe Mama Dolls 4^f^^ Flexi Dolls ^^^W) Cuddly Dolls i^jf^^ Sensational new ij II Three Headed Doll ^ ' \It weeps, it sleeps, it smiles\ Priced from 50 <J to $15.00 United Stationery Store S. Greeley Ave. Chappaqua 369 L. Wellins, Prop. Chappaqua Pharmacy WILLIAM HABER, Ph. G. King Street Next to Post Office CHAP. 739 Tom Ormsbee will be glad to give specific information about any heir loom readers may have. To get this free expert identification, write to Tom Ormsbee, New Canaan, Connecticut, enclosing a clear photograph and de scription of your heirloom, a self-addressed envelope and fifteen cents to cover stenographic costs. MIKKELSEN'S EXPRESS & STORAGE CO., Inc. Local and Long Distance Moving Packing — Shipping — Crating GERALD MARSHALL, General Manager Telephones Pleasantville 180 Mt. Kisco 5388 FIVE PENNSYLVANIA CHALK ANIMALS These were hollow and in some cases equipped with a coin slot for use as a penny bank. The deer on the left may have been inspired by a similar one of Bennington ware. The dog in the center is a crude representation of the Staffordshire ones then being made. The other three were inspired by the wild and domestic life around them. Cholly Chappaqua Says: The frost is on the pumpkin alright—and on Cholly too. This is the time of year when Cholly wonders why people including himself—live in Westchester. Florida, California or some other clime would be so much pleasanter. Mrs. Held is to be envied. She's Marcy Held's mother and she left recently for California to stay with her daughter. Mr. & Mrs. Haggerty formerly of Virginia have rented Mrs. Held's apartment. They have a spare room too if anyone's interested. Mrs. Haggerty is Pat Prendergast's sister or should we say Mr. Haggerty is Mrs. P.'s brother. The A. Frank Wellins are also migrating—he for his health and she for the climate. They are planning to settle down in Florida. Mr. & Mrs. Wilbur Norseen and Nancy, Elizabeth and Hannah from Chaddsford, Pa. have bought a house on Quaker Road. Mrs. Norseen must be well fixed for nylons since Mr. Norseen is with the Dupont Nylon Thread Company. The James Brunners of Bronxville have bought Frank Neff's house on Salem Road. Mr. Brunner is associated with the Monsanto Chemical Company. Paul Brunner, aged 3£, will have lots of companions around his own age in the neighborhood. Orrie Horton of Maple Avenue has broken his wrist again. Mr. Horton was just recovering from a wrist fracture when he tumbled downstairs and broke the same wrist all over again. . Gilbert Sinnott of Ridgewood Terrace relieved his spouse of some chores while he spent a few days resting up at home last week. Mrs. Emil Burkhardt of Chappaqua Ridge is boarding a year old boy who couldn't fit into a furnished room with his parents —the only quarters they could find. The Charles Whelans of Kings Court beat the meat shortage one night last week by dining in -New York. Mr. & Mrs. Howard Bare and two year old Jean have bought a house on Orchard Lane. They hail from White Plains. The Lambert Davis family who recently moved from Chap paqua to Ossining had a week-end guest from New York City— Noel Hinrichs. Mr. & Mrs. Everard Meade and daughter, Betty, swelled the crowd on Sunday. Mrs. McNeil Robertson from Long Island is teaching at the Pied Piper School. Mrs. Robertson was Head Counselor at Mohawk Camp this past summer. Until recently she also had her own school on Long Island. Eugene Kinkead who writes for the New Yorker Magazine has moved from New York City to Hardscrabble Road. Mrs. Kinkead, Duncan and Maeve moved with him. The Reverend John Elliott of Spring Road who walked more than a mile each day to and from the station every day for a year, no longer walks. He has acquired a Ford to facilitate matters. Things in Scarsdale appear to be just as tough as they are here. Walter Fogg, a member of the Scarsdale High School faculty, has bought the Woods house on Mill River Road. The C. M. D. Peters will find Chappaqua quite a change from Perry Street. Cholly speaks with authority because he lived on Charles Street, which is one block from Perry, in Greenwich Village in New York City. The Peters are now living on Seven Bridges Road. The Floyd Harpers and the W. Marshall Curtises have a lot in common. Both families have just come from Ithaca, New York, and both the men are connected with the Foundation for Economic Education. They each bought a house in Dodge Farm and they each have three children. Mr. & Mrs. Sam Little of Hardscrabble Road drove upstate last week with their son Leland. \Lee' entered St. Bonaventure College near Jamestown, N. Y. He is studying business admin istration. Leland was separated from the Navy in June after having spent two years in the Naval Air Service. The kindergarten class of the Pied Piper School is holding sessions this year at the home of Mr. & Mrs. Frederick Thompson, Jr., of Roaring Brook Road. The Thompsons, who offered the use of their beautiful home and grounds, have a son, Jonathan, who is enrolled in the class. More nursery age children can be accom modated at the King Street home of the Pied Piper since the older youngsters are elsewhere. Mrs. Fred Sutton was taken to Northern Westchester Hospital on Saturday morning for a series of tests. Installation of officers of the Ladies Auxiliary of Wectchester County Volunteer Firemen's Association will take place at Bill Riebers next week. Among the local people being inducted into office are: Mrs. Adeline Piazza of Chappaqua, 2nd Vice-Presi dent; Mrs. Martha Chaleski of Chappaqua, Trustee; and Mrs. Helen Fischer of Pleasantville, Trustee. Mrs. Fischer is also the retiring President. , Franklin Page, owner of Page's Service Station, gave his employees a treat on Sunday when he took them for a cruise. The craft is anchored at Stamford, Conn., where the boys em barked and cruised from there to and around Long Island Sound. Marion and Stanley Roth have just returned from a Florida vacation. They went south early to be in trim for the holiday rush. Marion is now working at the shop every morning. Mr. Haber, new proprietor of the Chappaqua Pharmacy, was really busy on Monday. A sundae is given gratis by Mr. Haber to each member of the Horace Greeley Football Team who makes a touchdown. On Monday there were six touchdowns—hence the Chappaqua Pharmacy shelled out six sundaes on the house. Leroy Bell and Harold Winckler-are making like the squirrels. They've been storing nuts for the winter.