Gardener’s Cottage

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George Wyness was hired as Glensheen’s Head Gardener in 1921, and it was the last job he held. His son, Bob, took over the job after the end of World War II, and it was the last job he held, as well. Bob and his wife, Elsie, lived in the Gardener’s Cottage until 2004. 

Here was the cottage in the 20s or 30s:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

At first glance, it almost looks the same today. However, if you are compare the old photo with the new, you will notice that the roofline changed from an open gable roof to a saltbox style roof:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

The Congdons expanded the cottage after the Wyness family expanded, and needed more room for the new children. In the above photo, the right side of the roof was raised for additional space.

I’m a fan of dormer windows, and this simple shed dormer with its 17 panes of glass is fine example:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

Inside the Gardener’s Cottage, let’s start down in the basement. I’ve never seen an electric panel quite like this one. I wonder if this panel had a specific use, for example, perhaps it controlled circuity for the greenhouse?

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

Every good workshop has its own vise. This vise, a Columbian D43½ was made in Cleveland:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

At the top of the stairs from the basement, the backside of the door (which you’d never see, since the door is always closed) has lots of ‘Dear Abby’ letters taped to the door. Up at the top of the door is a name plate that says ‘Elsie Olson.’ Elise was Bob’s wife.

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

Today, the ground floor of the Gardener’s Cottage is mostly reserved as a bridal room. You may or may not realize that Glensheen hosts a fair number of weddings each year, and having a place like this is ideal for the bridal party. Most of the downstairs has been completely redone, and very little is original. Some of the few original fixtures are the radiators, and they are very sharp looking:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

Moving upstairs you can see the creative use of space, with in-the-eave drawers and the trim around the door having been mitred to fit the angle of the roofline:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

The rest of the upstairs has been converted to office space, and doesn’t really have much of the original character. One last exception is this signal bell:

Hidden Glensheen photo of the Gardener's Cottage by Bryan French Photography

In a normal house, this would be the doorbell, and perhaps it’s a doorbell here. However, since this is Glensheen, one could imagine that the bell might have been connected to the mansion. Either way, it’s fun to see how simple the operation was.

Next: Grounds
Previous: Carriage House

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