We mentioned the Baldwin-Reynolds House in our last article and promised you more information about this amazing historic home! Here's our in-depth look at one of Meadville's greatest treasures!
Construction of the home began in 1842, and in 1843, Henry Baldwin, a United States Supreme Court Justice, and his wife Sally, moved into their gorgeous new home. The home was designed after a Southern plantation Greek-Revival home in Tennessee, known as "Hunter Hill," which Henry had taken a liking to while visiting. Less than a year after moving in, however, Henry passed away, and Sally leased the home to the Meadville Female Seminary for a finishing school for girls.
The finishing school did not last long, though, and in 1847 Sally deeded the property to her nephew, William Reynolds. William and his wife Julia moved in and spent the next years remodeling and adding to the home. Their youngest son John and his wife Katherine were the last to live in the house, and in 1963, the Crawford County Historical Society purchased the home to be used as a museum. Many of the original contents of the home were auctioned off prior to the Historical Society's acquiring the home, but many of those items have since been graciously donated back to the Historical Society to be used in their displays.
The dress on display here is the same dress Mrs. Reynolds wore in her portrait, which you can see on the left-hand side, behind the dress.
We LOVE the open floor plan in this part of the house, as you can stand in the sitting room, look through the next room, and into the law library.
Many of the books on display in the law library are, naturally, books on law. I would be interested to see how much has changed since Mr. Baldwin's day.
This bright, sunny room was perfect for entertaining guests or enjoying the view of nature without the bother of pesky bugs. I can easily see myself curled up with a good book on a rainy day!
This ice house is prettier than many of today's homes! Large chunks of ice were stored in here, with sawdust packed around it.
We highly recommend a stop at the Baldwin-Reynolds House Museum. It is open from June to August for general tours. Tours start at noon, 1:00, 2:00, and 3:00, Wednesday through Sunday. If you are in Meadville during the Christmas season, call about a tour to see the Trees of Christmas display!
No admission fee is charged, but please consider donating so that this wonderful non-profit organization can continue to keep the museum open.
Location: 639 Terrace Street, Meadville
Many, many thanks to Cheryl from the Crawford County Historical Society for answering our many questions, for offering us an excellent tour of the house and the doctor's office, and for allowing us to photograph this beautiful historic home! We had a great time!
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