We’re getting ready to re-open our doors in style!
Historic Rosedale’s original doors are back in place. A number of our doors were sent for restoration earlier this year. Thanks to Paul Tickle Restoration & Painting for a fantastic job bringing our doors back to their former glory! This restoration was made possible by the generous gift of one of our special donors. If these doors look unique, that’s because they are! Archibald Frew was a wealthy man who spent a fortune building his grand house at Rosedale while living in a village of simple log dwellings (hence the nickname “Frew’s Folly”). But, his extravagance inside the house is a deception once you enter through a door that has been ‘faux-grained’. Faux-graining is a highly skilled technique in which artists paint wood from common trees to look like a much more expensive and exotic wood. This gave everyone who passed by Frew’s house the illusion that he imported South American mahogany. Historic Rosedale has some of the best examples of faux graining in the Piedmont area of North Carolina. As noted in a letter from the North Carolina Department of Archives and History, “the finishes throughout Rosedale are among the most sophisticated we have seen in the Piedmont from that early period, especially the grain-painted finishes …”. These finishes (along with the marbelizing, woodwork, and cornices) are very unusual for the backcountry. The Catawba Dinning Room exhibit at the Museum of Early Southern Decorative Arts (MESDA) in Winston-Salem is of similar design and is very possibly the handiwork of the same craftsman.
We look forward to reopening our site soon and sharing these beautiful restorations with our visitors.