Babb Homestead Updates

10551654_494411100692985_1885553021801475835_oThe fireplace inside Seth Babb’s 1787 Homestead in Greeneville, TN is virtually complete. I received these photos today from Canjoe John. Just days before Earl Fletcher’s death, they worked together to install the mantle. We still plan to install a crane to hold the pot, but that is a month or two away.

 These three photos depict 3 angles of view of a newly installed mantle and fireplace surround. The new mantle and surround was created from beautifully aged 150+ year old red oak and white oak lumber that was recovered from another restoration project with a similar history. The extremely heavy beams used were minimum of 2 and 1/2 inches thick of rough sawed material retaining all the character, checks, cracks, hand hewn/sawn marks, and patina of the 150+ years since they were first used. In this particular project, the masons that built the fireplace and chimney were unfamiliar with historic restoration work and though did a beautiful job of laying the brick and stone, lthe end product had too much ‘modern’ in its finished appearance. The mantle and surround was created in order to cover over and make right the authenticity of appearance of the stone work. Now that the mantle/surround has been installed, the firebox will soon be distressed in ways to make it appear, too, as a 150+ year old, used fireplace. After the hardware is made and installed; the crane, the cook kettle, the fireplace andirons and kitchen tools/utensils and everything else related, it will take on the character of the highly used fireplace that cooked the food and heated the structure back in the day.



Additionally, we have decided on a roofer to install the permanent roof. He is engaged in another project until October. Crafting a historic shaker roof takes special skill, so we have agreed to wait. We plan to continue work on other items, such as painting and front steps, while we wait.

I’m attending the Federation of Genealogical Societies convention this week and hope to come up with lots of interesting tidbits as a result. Stay tuned and have a great Labor Day Weekend!



Earl W. Fletcher Jr. (Died: Aug. 22, 2014)

Earl FletcherDied: Aug. 22, 2014

Earl W. Fletcher Jr., 65, of Mosheim, passed away Friday morning at the Nathanael Greene Museum.

He was the director of the Nathanael Greene Museum.

Mr. Fletcher was a member of First Presbyterian Church.

He was a former alderman for the Town of Mosheim, former president of Washington College Academy, a member of Mosheim Masonic Lodge, the Greene County Scottish Rite Club, a retired teacher and coach with the Greene County School System, and a member of American Legion Post No. 64.

Survivors include the love of his life and wife of 45 years: Betty L. Fletcher; a son: David Fletcher of the home; his mother: Norma Jean Fletcher; two brothers and sisters-in-law: Kenny and Faye Fletcher and Joe and Shirley Fletcher of Greeneville; a sister: Norma Jean Fletcher of Greeneville; his mother-in-law: Bobbie Jo Mauk of Rogersville; a brother-in-law and sister-in-law: Jeff and Allison Alley of Surgoinsville; half-sister: Linda Gass of Baileyton; half-brothers: Russell and Dean Harley; sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law: Marchetta and James Hensley of Mosheim, Nancy and Terry Hopson and Freda and Jeff Morgan of Greeneville; special neighbors: Doyle Westmoreland, Stanley Easterly, Kenny Howlett of Mosheim and Linda Branch of Midway; and the staff and friends of Nathanael Greene Museum.

He was preceded in death by his father: Earl W. Fletcher Sr.; biological mother: Beatrice Haire; and two brothers: Jim and David Fletcher.

There will be a private graveside service at Andrew Johnson National Cemetery with Dr. Dan Donaldson officiating.

At his request, there will be no formal visitation or funeral.

Friends may stop by Kiser-Rose Hill Funeral Home at their convenience to sign a guest register.

In lieu of flowers, memorials may be made to the Nathanael Greene Museum, 101 W. McKee St., Greeneville, TN 37743; or to the First Presbyterian Church, Van Fund, 110 N. M. St., Greeneville, TN 37743.

Condolences may be sent to the family at