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Friday, October 31, 2008

Bevier-Elting House



Bevier-Elting House Historical Marker. Digital image, taken Sunday, Ocotber 26, 2008 in New Paltz, New York. Privately held by Thomas MacEntee, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Chicago, IL. 2008.

After the visit to the Freer-Low House, the group proceeded about 300 feet to the Bevier-Elting House which was built a few years later than the original section of the Freer-Low House, being completed in 1698.




Beview-Elting House Great Room. Digital image, taken Sunday, Ocotber 26, 2008 in New Paltz, New York. Privately held by Thomas MacEntee, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Chicago, IL. 2008.

As with many other stone houses on Huguenot Street, the Bevier-Elting House had one main room with a cellar below and a storage loft above.  The photo above shows the right-section of the Great Room with a hearth added as part of the 1720 addition (see below).



Beview-Elting House Great Room. Digital image, taken Sunday, Ocotber 26, 2008 in New Paltz, New York. Privately held by Thomas MacEntee, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Chicago, IL. 2008.

The decor of the Great Room, along with the two added rooms to the house, is in the late 18th century style.  The original hearth would have been where the large armoire type cabinet is currently located.

One note on the large windows and the lack of curtains: the tour guide pointed out that neighbors were very suspicious of people with curtains since it indicated they had something to hide.  In addition, since the Great Rroom was often used for "clean work" such as spinning, neddlecraft, combing wool, etc., it was a chance for your neighbors to see how industrious you were as a family. 

Around 1720, after the original owner Louis Bevier had died, his son Samuel embarked on the addition of a second room since he had nine children to house and feed. The second room is lower than the original room, and is a few steps down to current day street level.



Beview-Elting House 1720 Addition. Digital image, taken Sunday, Ocotber 26, 2008 in New Paltz, New York. Privately held by Thomas MacEntee, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Chicago, IL. 2008.

The new addition was used more as a kitchen and for "dirty work" such as preparing grain, food, etc.  In keeping with the original house, Samuel Beview also extended the cellar and the loft under and over this new section.



Beview-Elting House 1735 Addition. Digital image, taken Sunday, Ocotber 26, 2008 in New Paltz, New York. Privately held by Thomas MacEntee, [ADDRESS FOR PRIVATE USE,] Chicago, IL. 2008.

The last section of the Bevier-Elting House as made around 1735 and contains a large sleeping room probably used by the parents or grand-parents.  Since the room was elevated above the rest of the house, it probably retained heat much better in the winter.  And Samuel took advantage of the wall of the original hearth (on the right of the current room) to provide some extra warmth.

One note on the various items in the room:

- the green chest is just that - a chest was used to store items such as blankets, linens, etc.

- the brown trunk was used more for transport of items, either from France or when traveling around the New Paltz area

- there is a bed warmer on the left part of the green chest

- and the odd contraption made of wood and a jug is called a "stone pig:" it was filled with hot water and then used in bed to alleviate the pain of arthritis, much like a hot water bottle.

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