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Author Topic:   Through every disaster a blessing
IJP

Posts: 326
Registered: Oct 2004

iconnumber posted 09-28-2005 11:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for IJP     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I have now for nearly a month resided in Columbia, South Carolina, while I await the re-opening of my neighborhood in New Orleans.

While I have been here, I have met numerous people, most of whom invariably have been among the kindest and most generous I have ever encountered.

At a small social gathering within the first week of my stay, I met a number of fascinating people of diverse interests, including artists, musicians, and members of other cultural media and fields.

I have spent a good deal of time with one person especially, whose career mostly entails working closely with persons, entities, and organizations in all fields of cultural arts. As such, she is aware of many local obscurities that a mere visitor like myself would never have the fortune to encounter, the best hang-outs, museum exhibits, local publications, area merchants, etc.

She and I visited Charleston last weekend. I had never been there before, but I was struck immediately by how similar in appearance the town is to New Orleans. My friends have always liked to joke, when they speak of towns like Charleston, or Savannah, that they are indeed very much like New Orleans, yet cleaner, and without the decadence and decay (It's true, but I love my town, anyway).

As in New Orleans, there is a thriving antiques trade in Charleston, and we seized upon the opportunity to traverse the merchant district of town, visiting in the meantime many shops that had a sizable inventory of silver. I believe they call this, "busman's holiday". I made a few contacts and saw quite a bit of very nice silver. My new friend seemed eager to hear about this unusual fascination of mine, itself I suppose somewhat of an obscurity these days, so when for example we came across an 18th century English berry spoon with repoussé chasing in the bowl, I explained to her that the chased berries and fruit were likely a much later modification, as the fashion for that kind of embellishment hadn't arose until the late 19th century, and it is common to find older English serving spoons, which would have been plain, decorated with later chasing when it came into fashion (A fact I learned here).

Though we did many other things in Charleston, my friend told me later that her favorite part of the visit was learning the obscure little facts I would tell her while we looked at old silver... I'm not sure whether to believe that, but it's nice to hear her say it.

Tomorrow is my 25th birthday. My friend has given me a book entitled Palmetto Silver - Riches of the South - A Celebration of South Carolina Silver, which was published by the McKissick Museum of the University of South Carolina. I don't yet know much about Southern coin silver, but I know it's a field I'd like to break into. This book is likely a good start.

In a matter of days or weeks, I will return to my city with many great memories of this trying time.

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tmockait

Posts: 963
Registered: Jul 2004

iconnumber posted 09-28-2005 12:07 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for tmockait     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
IJP,

Happy Birthday! I am glad that you are well and that there is a "silver lining" to this terrible event (yes, the pun is intentional!).

Tom

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adelapt

Posts: 418
Registered: May 2003

iconnumber posted 09-28-2005 04:52 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for adelapt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
IJP,
Yes! Happy Birthday - and many happy returns to your beloved New Orleans.

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doc

Posts: 705
Registered: Jul 2003

iconnumber posted 09-28-2005 06:44 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for doc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Happy Birthday indeed! I don't know if you had the chance while you were in Charleston, but a visit to the silver exhibit at the Charleston Museum is well worth the trip. Especially now that you are becoming interested in the field of Southern silver.

I had the opportunity, under much less stressful circumstance than you, to spend a few days in Charleston as well recently and my visits to King Street antique establishments were among the most memorable I have had-so much so that I was induced to make my largest silver purchase to date!

Your story is a testament to seeing the positive in a bad situation, and I hope that you are able to return to your home city very soon.

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ahwt

Posts: 2124
Registered: Mar 2003

iconnumber posted 09-29-2005 12:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ahwt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Happy birthday and I hope you are able to return to New Orleans soon. What a great place to look for silver.

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