Thank you to everyone who has touched, or been touched by, Menokin in some way in 2017. We have had a remarkable year of growth and planning. Our programs are reaching more people than ever and we experienced a record number of visitors.
Now, during this season of celebration, it’s important to pause for quiet and mindfulness. Take a different path. Appreciate the timeless workings of nature transitioning to another season.
We offer you the gift of Menokin. It’s all here waiting for you. The road less traveled by.
Fall is finally (kinda, sorta) in the air in the Northern Neck. A drizzly morning, that has since transformed into a sunny day, offered an extravaganza of autumny images for my itchy shutter finger. Enjoy my walk through the Menokin landscape.
The Menokin staff would like to thank Eliza, who took on the daunting task of sifting through boxes and boxes of artifacts extracted from archaeological digs at Menokin over the last 13 years, and photographing them for use in an upcoming exhibit. Her work is exceptional and we are so pleased with the final images!
Eliza is a rising sophomore at Christ Church School.
I first became interested in Menokin when I visited on a field trip a couple years ago. I was not only intrigued by the history of the house and the people that lived there but also the plan about the ‘Glass House’. It was something that I had never seen before. I liked the
idea that you could see what the house would have looked like back then while at the same time seeing what it looks like today. It’s awesome that you can see the structure of the house, foundation, and the inside of the walls, but it’s also cool that it shows what’s happened over time.
Before my internship, I didn’t realize that they had carried out so many digs and found so many cool artifacts. It was a pleasure to get to go through all the different things that have been found through the years. I hadn’t realized that other people had lived at the house after Francis and Rebecca. The artifacts were like a timeline that shows what went on and how things changed through the years. I not only learned more about the history of the house and the people that lived there, but I enjoyed the photography aspect as well. It was not all what I was expecting, but I’m very glad it’s what I ended up doing!
It was also fun to learn about what goes on in the background of historic places like Menokin. I had no idea the amount of time and effort that went into something like this. I think it’s really amazing that Menokin seems like it’s all put together by the community. It’s an amazing place that has a bunch of really cool people that obviously care a lot about what they are doing. It was so much fun getting to help out there and meet all the incredible people that make Menokin possible!
After five years of friendship with this old house, I have photographed her from (I thought) every angle.
But a site visit yesterday revealed a new platform just built for the stucco removal mock up (more on that to come) that literally opened a new window on Menokin.
I posted a lot about the pre-construction work that took place at Menokin this summer. Our three interns did quite an exceptional job identifying and moving stones onto the life-sized HABS drawings of the four facades of the house.
But we’re not above having a little fun with our work, and nobody does it quite like Allie and Emily Lyth. These sisters have been part of the Menokin volunteer and intern corps for a number of years. They couldn’t resist a slightly surrealistic narrative…..
Hmmm. Which key is it?
I’m sure Francis Lightfoot Lee was always chatting on his cell phone when he entered the house, too.
Just casually scaling the house.
We did our best to replicate the HABS picture with the actual house, but it was a little challenging since the front door doesn’t exist on the house.
Scaling the actual house… just not as enthusiastically.
Menokin and The Octagon House are linked across
the centuries through historic events, a family and a love of architecture. Step inside their history and be immersed in an exhibit of revolutionary plans for their future in the Country House, City House exhibition.
The AIA Foundation (which operates The Octagon House) and The Menokin Foundation share a common mission: to encourage and educate the public and the architecture profession about the preservation of great design of the past, and the creation of great design for the future. That mission is made tangible through this collaborative exhibit.
Menokin played host to a full house of local teachers on July 31st who were participating in the Rappahannock Community College (RCC) Teacher History Tour recertification program.
Menokin’s newly formed partnership with the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) allowed us to develop a program for this Teacher Tour called Story Telling With A Camera.
Photographer, and adjunct VMFA professor, Stacy Evans led the discussion and instruction. The program included a step-by-step series of discussions and presentations about the process of Story Telling With A Camera, including a brief history of Menokin; a photography presentation; how to plan a sequence for
a story; and ideas for a final presentation.
During this shared experience, participants learned about processing and presentation tools like laptops, printer output, and bookmaking materials.
The goal of the exercise was to help participants learn to listen – to themselves and others – and help draw out personal narratives that are interesting and meaningful. Skills that most certainly translate to the classroom.
Here is a (very) brief video of my presentation from the day.
Wonderful peek through the reversed lens of time to photographs taken in and around the Northern Neck by (gasp) a woman! Menokin makes a cameo appearance in this post, but there is a link to all of Frances Benjamin Johnston’s photographs on the Library of Congress website. Search for “Menokin” there to see some beautiful interior images.
emily lyth has been an intern at menokin since april 2014. she lives in richmond county with her family and is currently pursuing her bachelor’s degree from drexel university’s online degree program.
“I started visiting the trails at Menokin back in April. As a new intern, I felt it was important to educate myself about The Menokin Foundation. To me, that meant going beyond simply learning about Francis Lightfoot Lee and the history of the Menokin house; I wanted to explore the land and the property that are such an intrinsic part of Menokin’s story.
So when the weather got a little warmer, I laced up my hiking shoes, charged my iPod, and spent most of my Saturday traveling the beautiful paths through the woods and along Cat Point Creek. Though I hadn’t anticipated it, that was the beginning of a new weekend tradition for me ─ one that has become a great source of relaxation in my life.
The following weekend, I added my camera, some homework, and a book to my backpack and spent the afternoon taking pictures of nature and the wildlife, catching up on homework, and reading.
Whether it’s just to walk and mess around with my camera while I listen to music or to sit at the picnic table by the creek and do homework and read, spending time at Menokin is now something I look forward to after a long or stressful week; the whole property offers a peaceful solitude that can’t be found anywhere else.
Over the last couple of months, I’ve learned that visiting Menokin with friends is a fun way to spend the day enjoying nature, and visiting alone is a great way to relax, de-stress, and clear my mind. Menokin has become like my own little sanctuary ─ the place I escape to when I need time alone or need to unwind.
Since I started interning at Menokin, I have felt that I’m part of an organization and experience that is truly special, and I think the property and trails are a great reflection of that feeling.”
Internpretations are blog posts authored by our interns. this glimpse of menokin and its place in the lives of these college students is our attempt to represent an alternative point of view ofa menokin experience. the only instructions are “write about your experience here.” we hope to feature an internpretation each week.
The Menokin Foundation is pleased to announce that is has become a statewide community partner of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The partnership program is open to independent, organized, and permanently established non-profit institutions in Virginia that maintain open membership, have a mission that is educational or aesthetic in purpose, and provide open access to programs and exhibitions provided by VMFA.
The Menokin Foundation is thrilled to be able to bring VMFA programs, speakers, and exhibits to the residents of the Northern Neck,” stated Alice French, Education and Outreach Coordinator for Menokin. “Along with many other new programs being hosted at Menokin this year, the VMFA programs will kick off this summer with a very special speaker, Jeffrey Allison.
Allison, photography historian and Manager of Statewide Programs and Exhibitions at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts, is also the Paul Mellon Collection Educator and Manager for VMFA and a professional photographer.
In his lecture, Chasing the Illusive Image: The Origins, Identification, and Care of Antique Photographs, Allison will discuss the history of photography and how to identify and care for the various types of old photographs in your own collection. He will also share information on how to determine the year a photograph was made and share examples of historic photographic processes.
Participants are encouraged to bring their own photographs to share with Mr. Allison and other attendees. You’ll leave this interactive session with a sound basis on how to identify photographs using information provided in handouts, reference websites and book titles used by Allison in his work with the VMFA.
There is a $10 per person fee to attend and registration is strongly encouraged. You may purchase tickets in advance at www.menokin.org/events or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/menokin or you may pay at the door. This program will take place on Thursday, July 10, 2014 at 6:00 pm at the Menokin Visitor’s Center.
Additional programs scheduled in 2014 include:
Menokin plans to utilize this partnership with the VMFA to develop programs that will bring a level of fine art and exhibits to the communities of the Northern Neck and surrounding counties,” stated Executive Director, Sarah Pope. “The Menokin house will be an exhibit itself, as well as an exhibit space. Historic, modern and interpretive installations will provide arts, education and inspiration to visitors and artists alike.
For more information on these and other programs, please visit us online at www.menokin.org, or in person at 4037 Menokin Road, Warsaw, VA 22572