In the 1840s, a 50-year-old chestnut tree was felled and became the sill of a log-and-chink style cabin in the mill town of Phoenix, Maryland. It served the mighty role of supporting the walls of this home, which housed many families, until the mid-1980s when its new owner had to remove it for a renovation. This person happened to be a wood enthusiast, and after removing it, saved it. After raising his family there, he and his wife then moved to coastal Maine, bringing this chestnut sill along with all their cherished possessions. Having met me, and knowing my love for historic wood, I was given this beam section and have made 13 Heirloom Flower Presses. It is rare to even see a chestnut tree since the chestnut blight of the early 1900s, which devastated our Eastern forests. Currently, it is acquired through salvaged wood operations, and only if you can find it.
History tells us that the influx of European settlers were well-versed in the ancient tradition of log home building. When they cleared their land, down came the tall, straight, and plentiful rot-resistant chestnut trees. These homes were constructed for and by the common folk who either sought work in these mill towns or started farms on the land. Politicians like Abraham Lincoln, who lived in such a home, made the log cabin a symbol “for the way of the people”, which brought hope and change to the poor and less fortunate Americans of that time.
Press dimensions are 11.5”W X 11.5”D X 13.5”H. Cardboard inserts are 11.5” X 9”.