Not hooking related. Related to the history of Paris Hill and the Parris House itself.
As some of you know, Paris Hill village was the birthplace and childhood home of Hannibal Hamlin, Lincoln's first vice president, elected with him in 1860. It is a common assumption that the people of Paris Hill would have been elated by this development, but in fact, many of the prominent families on the Hill were States' Rights Democrats at the time, including the Parris family.
In doing some research today I consulted the 1860 diary of Arabella Rawson Carter, who was Columbia Parris' sister and who lived right across the street and catecorner. She refers to Lincoln and Hamlin as "Black Republicans" in her diary. In spite of being pretty well informed about the antebellum period, I wasn't positive what this meant, although our historical society secretary correctly guessed that it was a then derogatory term against the relatively new party (it had formed in 1854) because of their desire to halt the spread of slavery and because some of their members were outright abolitionists (although Lincoln was not at that time).
In researching the term, I found the attached piece in Harvard's collection. The biggest kick in the pants for me every time I discover just how sympathetic the Parris family and their extended family were to the whole philosophy of States' Rights is that I suspect that Pedro Tovookan, the ex-slave who lived here at the Parris House with them, must have overheard some things that were, for him, very difficult to hear.
Here is what Arabella wrote in her diary on January 1st, 1864, as the Civil War raged on: "The Republican rulers have deluged this country with the blood of the people and their envy and rage know no bound. They glory over the overthrow of civil liberty. They glory that we are overwhelmed with national debt, that the people are oppressed by taxes and the stamp acts and worst of all conscription acts. The President (Lincoln) jokes and the high officials feast and riot in the ruin they have wrought and the people are palsied and meekly endure."
There will always be people on the wrong side of history and when they are it is oh, so obvious to future generations. It is a privilege for me to share the history of the Parris House with people who ask about it and when I do, I center Pedro Tovookan as the most remarkable individual who ever graced these premises. It was he who endured as an example of character and strength in the face of hardship, and continues to inspire people today who hear his story. History can be the ultimate bringer of justice.
Note: The Democratic and Republican parties have each changed a LOT in the past 150 years. ... See MoreSee Less
With political strife almost palpable, the landmark 1860 US Presidential campaign moved through a series of pivotal moments where the direction and fate of the union vacillated between unity and confl...
Open for shopping today, noon to 6 PM. I will briefly be out of the studio between about 12:50 and 1:30 to attend to the historical society, but since we've had no one show up for shopping on weekdays so far, I'm not real worried about it! 😛 ... See MoreSee Less
Come on up to Historic Paris Hill Village’s Founders’ Day celebration on July 20th and stop in to the Parris House Wool Works studio to hook, chat, shop, or just relax. We’ll have refreshments, the studio and sunporch open, and everything you need for learning about and making hooked rugs. Note: Our open house ... Read more
*THIS IS A BRING-YOUR-OWN-PATTERN CLASS* Beth will provide all materials and embellishments, but you may also bring some of your own if they are special to you. Materials provided for you: wool fabric sari silk roving tee shirt material yarns beads buttons perl cotton embroidery floss applique materials more In this class we will explore ... Read more
Come on out and see what we’re all about at the Parris House this summer! We’ll have refreshments, answers to all your questions (or try to), tours of the historic Parris House, and will provide you a self guided walking tour of Historic Paris Hill as well. See what’s growing in the garden, check out ... Read more
Yes, you are talented and yes, you can draw stick figures and a whole lot more. Open up to your creativity (yes, you have it) as we talk about how to keep a rug journal, brainstorm pattern ideas, learn basic principles of pattern design, and go through the process of creating our own ... Read more
Join Beth’s other half, Bill Miller, for a fun morning of cold process soap making. We will be making an all natural cold process soap recipe using vegetable oils for the base and essential oils for the scents. These soaps are vegan friendly! Each student will leave with a 2 lb. soap wood soap ... Read more