Monday, July 2, 2007
Jelly Pies a Specialty
When Lucy was working with Alderhouse, they rehabbed an artist's coop on the North end of Main Street. When interior renovations were underway, it was clear that the building at 650 Main Street was originally two buildings, later skillfully connected. One big piece of evidence was an internal wall, located under plaster and true-dimension 2x4's.
This brick, internal wall, was obviously once an external wall, with a large, hand-painted sign for E. Millers Bakery (though the "b" in bakery was missing), and it advertised "Jelly Pies A Specialty" (though the "je" of jelly was missing). I mentioned to Lucy that this wall would make a unique and wonderful patio for our downtown yard, if it could be dismantled intact.
As always, I have ideas, and Lucy puts them into action. She assembled friends and family (Mike, Betsy, Ted, Nick, Maggie, Sher, Jenny, Jane, Russ, Mike) and on a sunny Saturday, each brick was numbered carefully, transported to my back yard, stacked into a three foot pile, and covered with a blue tarp, where they sat for five years).
Until three weeks ago, when the yard was finally in shape to build the patio. After unwrapping the stack, I found that several bricks had disintegrated, others were covered with moss, and several of the coded numbers on the bricks had faded completely. I spent a day arranging the bricks to see if I could re-assemble the sign.
Convinced that the sign was intact, with a few missing bricks, I coated them with a preservative. Then I spent most of Saturday and Sunday building the patio. By six on Sunday I was exhausted, and due to exhaustion, had to stop after hitting my finger with a rubber mallet for a second time. A few rows remain to be firmly set, but the unique patio is in place.
The most exciting discovery was the sign painter's signature, E. J. Pryor, which appeared after being coated with preservative. I hope that he would have appreciated my appreciation of his handiwork.