Thoughtful musings on various topics by interesting people at Blithewold

Halley’s Comet, 1910

On May 26, 1910, Estelle Clements saw Halley’s Comet; she wrote in her diary, “Fine sight of comet in p.m.” It was an historic occasion to which she gave short shrift, going on to write … Read more.

Accident on the Road to Ravenna

In the spring of 1910 Bessie and William McKee were in Italy with their daughters Marjorie and Augustine. The family had traveled on the R.M.S. Carmania from New York to Naples, where they were met … Read more.

Keep Your Hands Off My Trees!

A scandal in Hazleton at the Pardee Mansion on West Broad Street was reported in the Hazleton Sentinel on December 4, circa 1900.  Linesmen from the Electric Light Company were attempting to cut down some … Read more.

“What New York Women Eat When They Shop”

Among Bessie’s papers in the Archives is a full-page article that she carefully cut out from the Ladies’ Home Journal, June 1909. Reading it now, 109 years later, we might think that the article was … Read more.

Walter Kilham, Jr.’s Recollections of Blithewold

Walter Kilham was the architect of Blithewold. Bessie met him in Boston in 1903 when she hired him to make extensive renovations on her newly purchased Commonwealth Avenue townhouse. She was so pleased with his … Read more.

A Cold December and a Warm Christmas

December 1917 in New England began with a cold spell that only got worse. Estelle Clements writes that on December 1st there was snow and high wind in Bristol. When the family returned to Boston … Read more.

Thanksgiving Poem by Marjorie Lyon, November 1959

Sixteen at the table this Thanksgiving Day! A cause for rejoicing old Auntie would say! There’s Margie whose flute in an orchestra blows And Auntie whose pictures are accepted at shows. Augustine who excels both … Read more.

The End of the Summer

Every year, when October comes around, I am reminded of a delightful, sentimental letter sent from Bessie McKee to her sister Alice Pardee Earle in October 1911. Bessie had enjoyed a wonderful summer at Blithewold, … Read more.

September 1917

One hundred years ago this month, on September 10th, 1917, Marjorie Lyon left her family in Bristol and traveled to Columbia, South Carolina. The evening before, she had celebrated her 34th birthday (three days early) … Read more.

Props

  Just home from the hospital, after those “ops,” I have to admit it, I needed my “props”! (Sunglass and visor, my stool and my stick) They really were useful and helped turn the trick. … Read more.