Thursday, September 30, 2010

History 101: Ye Olde Traveler's Inn & Coffee Shop

Holy heart attack, Batman!!
Or would that be blogosphere?? I can work with it.

Holy geek out, blogosphere!!

My snazzy signage and sidewalk messages are working!!



Why, you might ask?


Look what a random stranger off the street brought us this morning:

OHMYGOSHIAMSOFREAKINGEXCITED!!!!!! That, my friends, is a bonified photo of our house in the 1940s. EEEEEE!!! An actual photo of what we call the "Sandwich Shoppe" in it's hay day! EEEEEE!

This morning, I was jumping around and squealing like a 12 year old girl on speed who just got her Twilight book signed by Robert Pattinson. I have witnesses. Stephen was a little worried that he might have to call animal control.

I know... I am ridiculously gleeful over one little photo. Feel free to laugh at me at your leisure.

Now, in case you've forgotten, this is what our house looks like now:

It's in the historic district of our town. It even has an official little plaque and blurb in the the town registry:

"This site was previously the location of Reverend Paul Henkel's first house, constructed circa 1791 and later moved to a lot on [another street]. The current building was constructed between 1876 and 1885. This building was utilized as a rooming house at one time, and was also the site of the [Town] Tea Room."

And now I have a photo of it from the 1940s!!!

Shall we take a closer look at that beautiful old photo? You bet your patootie! (I recommend clicking on the image to enlarge.)

AAAH! SO HAPPY!! The script at the bottom says:

Traveler's Inn & Coffee Shop
L.S. Corbin owned and operated the Traveler's Inn and Coffee Shop from 1946 to 1953.
Now a residence.

Even cooler... The sign above the door and windows of what we now call the "Sandwich Shoppe" says, "Coffee Shop". The first thing I said to Stephen when we got the picture was... "Um.. Can we replicate that sign and hang it on the front of the Sandwich Shoppe? PLEEEAAASE??"

Also, I'm pretty sure there's a big sign hanging perpendicular to the front of the house by the far left column. You just can't make it out. Because it's perpendicular. Curse you, geometry!!

The other thing I'm crazy excited about?

JUST LOOK AT THAT RAILING!! I want it. We already knew that there used to be a railing on the house porch and porch roof because we can see where the railing used to be attached in multiple locations.

We were planning on putting up a railing eventually. Especially since the insurance company wants us to. I've actually been studying porch railings of various old Victorians in town to figure out what style to go with. I was going to take lots of pictures of different types and write a blog post about it. I was going to ask for your help to decide. Now, I know what the railing used to look like and I am definitely going to replicate it. (Plus, I was leaning towards that particular style anyways!)

ca 1946-1953                                                                     2010

Other little differences:
  • When we moved in to our house, there were three trees in front (way toooo close to the house). Now there is only one tree in front of the house. Back then, there were no trees in front of the house, but there was a HUGE tree somewhere behind the house that no longer exists today.
  • The big front window on the porch is totally different. Today, it's wider than it's tall and it was a single pane of glass when we bought the house. Then, it was a huge sash window that was taller than it was wide.
  • We have shutters on the two upper front windows today. None back then.
  • There were no raised garden beds in front of the house back then.

Joe, the random stranger from off the street, said that he grew up here, moved away, and came back. When he was a kid, he would go to the Coffee Shop and get ice cream from Mrs. Corbin, the owner.

He says that he also has a postcard of the place that should copy better. He just has to find it and then he'll bring it by. You can be sure I'm going to make that man some delicious cookies. And then write on the sidewalk in chalk that his cookies are waiting for him.

 I'll get to interrogate politely ask him a bajillion questions about his boyhood memories when he shows up to collect said cookies. I would have done so this morning, but I was taking a nap when he dropped by and gave the photo to Stephen.

Rats! Foiled again!

But, who cares?? I've been looking for pictures of our house ever since we moved in... And now.. .

I HAVE A PICTURE OF OUR HOUSE IN THE 1940s!!! (Did I mention that I'm geeking out??) 

I'm going to frame it and hang it up in the Sandwich Shoppe when it's done. What a great day! After much reflection, I realized that I learned something very important today. I learned that when you write on the sidewalk, you get what you want. ;)

And, finally, let us end this glorious day with one of my favorite Batman & Robin quotes...

Batman: What has yellow skin and writes??


Robin: A ball point banana.

Ahahahaha. I love it.

Stay tuned for more house history updates as I zealously ambush innocent passersby over the age of 70.

See you next week... Same blog time, same blog channel.

(What? I couldn't resist...)


  1. OH MY GOODNESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    And that railing ROCKS!

  2. Aaah!!!

    I am impressed by both your ability to turn this into a coherent post (I would have posted something like: OMG! Look! Looklooklook! And only that.) and your amazingly awesome 1960's Batman references.

    I love that railing! I also love how very similar the house now still is to what was original. I can't wait to see more photos!

  3. that's so awesome!! i love history, especially when there's a personal connection.

    glad your scheming worked!

  4. You're too funny. How cool that you are getting more info!!

  5. That is AWESOME!

    The only information we got form our old house was the owners names and the fact that it used to be a single story but was upgraded/ added to during the previous owners lifetime. No sweet pictures or house or history blurbs though!

    I absolutley love the adventures and mysteries your house has to offer!!, you should spend some of your mat leave doing a Nancy Drew style story about the secrets of the sandwich shop!

  6. I must tell you...I find your blog very interesting. I ran into it through Embrace the Camera, but now I read it often. Love vintage houses and the history behind them, so fascinating. I look forward to seeing the house become as grand as you wish and see the Sandwich Shop up and running! :)


Your comments make my day!!