Carriage House Stables

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The Congdons owned Aberdeen Angus cattle and Morgan horses. I couldn’t find any reference to them keeping chickens or bees, or any other animals. Perhaps they did, and it wasn’t worth mentioning, or perhaps they didn’t.

Most people who are coming to Glensheen for a tour enter here. And because they’re trying to figure out where to go for their tour, they don’t spend much time exploring this part of the carriage house.

These are the cow stables. The first thing to notice are the cork bricks that the cows would have stood on:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

The cows also had watering dishes that they controlled by pressing their down with their snouts:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

This hurricane lantern is hanging at the end of the cow stalls. It’s a Feuerhand – a brand that still exists today, although their stamped logo no longer looks quite so crisp and clean as this:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Turning back, you can see a stack of radiators used to keep this room warm:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Moving down to the horse stables, we find a light switch panel. I live in an old house, and we have some of these brass switchplate covers, but I have never seen one this long! Interestingly, someone came along and cut out the rotary dial in positions 4 and 8. This was clearly not done by an electrician – whether they wanted to have a simple on/off switch, or have a three-way switch, it could easily be accommodated by wiring:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Here was Dexter’s name plate:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Dexter was a horse from Chatanooga, and although he was part of the family for years, it doesn’t sound like he was the best horse. He threw Helen, he threw Elisabeth, he ran off when Elisabeth was out tobogganing, and at one point, Chester said that he should change Dexter’s name to George Hebard (Chester’s brother-in-law): “…he is so lazy – but indeed he sweats over his work.”

This is a grain mixer:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Here you can see how it looks inside:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Here’s a closer view:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

I tried to find more information about this sort of grain mixer, but I could only find more current versions. 

This National Iron Company sewer cover is on the floor of the stables:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

The National Iron Company was located out near where the West End Menards is located today:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Considering Chester’s mining connections, it seems likely that he and the owners of the National Iron Company were well-acquainted.

Back to the stables, here is a blanket holder, outside of one of the stalls:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

The tack room is still full of bridles and collars:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

The Congdons and the Hartleys were good friends (Chester’s son Walter married Guilford’s daughter Jessie). At some point, the Hartleys gave the Congdons some of their tack, including this collar with Guilford Hartley’s crest:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Here’s a collar from Guilford’s collection next to one from Chester’s, with each of their respective monograms:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

This looks like it was created later, almost as a display cabinet more than storage. The little badge at the top says “Fixtures and stable fittings furnished by L. Laramee & Co., Mpls, Minn.”:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

From what I understand, this stirrup wouldn’t say U.S. unless it was connected to the military.

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

Here are a couple of different styles of saddles. Neither has likely seen a horse for quite a while:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

This little round object is used for hanging… something… to keep it from getting kinks. But I don’t recall what it’s for. Anyone know?

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

This is a drawer in the tack room, and I only include it to show off the dovetail joints – another example of how the workmanship at Glensheen made its way throughout the entire estate:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

This drawer pull is just another example of the detail that represents Glensheen:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

I couldn’t figure out why the Congdons would have been showing their horses at the Illinois State Fair, but there were at least a couple of well-worn ribbons showing that they did well there:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

They also showed their Morgan horses at the Minnesota State Far, and did well there:

Hidden Glensheen Photo of Stables by Bryan French Photography

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