Saving the Spire!
One of the most striking architectural features on many Victorian style homes is the towering spire. These tall, metal structures reaching towards the sky are hard to ignore. Typically affixed to a turret, at first glance one would think they are a type of lightening rod, but their purpose is far from that of attracting bolts of electricity. Actually, their presence is purely decorative and symbolic. Mostly seen on churches, they portray a hopeful, celestial gesture towards heaven. Affixed to the turret on a home, they are viewed as a symbol of wealth and prestige. Spires are, by some accounts, the defining image of Victorian homes. Their ostentatious display screams "look at me" to many a passer by. We took notice, and with an err of determination, set forth on a mission to save one spire!
One of the houses that we recently salvaged in Little Rock, Arkansas was a majestic 1890 Queen Anne style Victorian that sat downtown just off the river. As we began the deconstruction process, the galvanized tin spire was impossible to ignore. It was an architectural element of the house that we refused to leave behind for the bulldozers. We discovered that the turret had been struck by lightning in 1976. During the repair of the turret, this spire was placed in the attic, where it remained for the next 20 years. In 1996 Little Rock saw it returned to it's rightful place by home owner, Mr. Hammond. The spire, which is in immaculate condition, remained there until it was successfully removed during our recent salvage operation.
Removing the spire was an interesting feat, to say the least. It involved a lift and a harrowing episode with a chain saw 50 feet high in the air. We were fortunate to have videographer Greg Spradlin from Camp Friday Films in Little Rock along for the ride. Greg put together an awesome video, documenting the removal of this incredible artifact along with it's journey from Arkansas to Alabama. You can watch the VIDEO by Clicking Here.
Upon it's arrival at Southern Accents, the top of the turret, which was cut and removed with the spire in tact, was stripped of all the old shingles. The weathered wood provides the perfect backdrop for this treasure. Although this is one of those rare finds that we would love to enjoy for a while, the spire is currently available for sale and can be viewed online by Clicking Here. If you are within driving distance, the spire is currently on display in our showroom. We're sure it will be a traffic stopper just as it was as it sat atop the majestic Victorian house on Cantrell Road.
April 12, 2013, Vol. 44
SOUTHERN ACCENTS ON TV!
Alabama Life spent a day with SOUTHERN ACCENTS last year filming for an upcoming episode of this locally produced and aired television show. Episode 105 will highlight some of the beautiful COVERED BRIDGES in Northeast Alabama, the music and vegetarian fare at the BOTTLE TREE in Birmingham and the magical restorations of architecture happening at SOUTHERN ACCENTS. Alabama Life Episode 105 will air on Alabama's WVUA and WUAO @ 3:30 pm cst this Sunday, April 14th. Please check your local listings for the channel lineup. For those outside the viewing area, you can watch the trailer by Clicking Here. We hope to have the video available for online viewing in about 3 weeks. As soon as it is available we will publish the link!
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Things are buzzing around the showroom! We are enjoying a touch of spring weather, folks are out and about, it's a busy time of year with new treasures coming through the door daily! Visit our New Arrivals page to view our latest finds which include several beautiful European exterior doors with forged iron inserts, a 100 year old wood bowl, an impressive oak base from a 1930-40's pool table, several salvage art pieces, a child's vintage pedal taxi, and more!!
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