SHOTAmiable AmsterdamMarlene Welty...

MY BEST

June 13, 1999

MY BEST SHOT

Amiable Amsterdam

Marlene Welty, Catonsville

Friends from high school and I traveled to Amsterdam by train from Bremer-haven, Germany. It took five trains and about six hours to arrive. We loved the canals and the walkability of the city. The little green houses were charm-ing and the people were very friendly. We visited cheese farms and brought home some wonderful cheeses. We have fond memories of a beautiful city.

READERS RECOMMEND...

Arizona

J.L. Bahlman, Baltimore

"Spring is the perfect time to travel to northern Arizona. The mild temperatures and longer days make sightseeing a delight. This photo of the north window to Monument Valley was just one of many photo opportunities on the 17-mile drive through Monument Valley."

California

Lenora Gentry, Perry Hall

"We honeymooned in Napa, Calif., staying at Cedar Gables Inn where Margaret and Craig serve a delightful breakfast. I am partial to the French toast with strawberries. The rooms have private whirlpool tubs and fireplaces. Very romantic, quiet and still our favorite place to stay."

A MEMORABLE PLACE

A tribute to craftsmen

Joseph R. Cardello

Special to the Sun

There's no place in this world like Snowshill Manor. It's unique -- a living reflection of the odyssey of one man on a singular mission. Charles Paget Wade, eccentric lord of Snowshill, inherited an independent income from his father's sugar estates in the West Indies, and, from 1900 to 1951, accumulated "things of everyday use in the past" that would form "a record of various vanished handicrafts." He lamented the impact of machinery and mass production on traditional craftsmen, and envisioned how everyday objects of the recent past -- made by the hands of talented if obscure individuals -- would become virtual museum pieces in the machine-age future.

Snowshill Manor -- high in the western reaches of the Cotswold Hills of Gloucestershire, England -- is Wade's own Victoria and Albert Museum. The holdings include Chinese furniture, Japanese armor, tools for clothmaking, and a long attic full of wheels: on farm wagons, boneshaker bicycles, prams, measuring instruments, hobby-horses, sedan chairs, model windmills and strange experimental vehicles from the 19th century. To fill the 20 rooms of his manor, he bought clocks and furniture from all over the world, farm equipment, smoking pipes, cribs and cradles, compasses, telescopes, pocket globes, prints, paintings, kitchen utensils, musical instruments and a wondrous array of old games, toys and dolls that fill the room he called "Seventh Heaven." He preserved not only the things the craftsmen made, but also the tools they used to make them.

Wade purchased Snowshill in 1919, and, after renovations and restorations, moved in with his collection. But the artifacts quickly took over and he left to live in a primitive, four-room cottage a short distance away. The Elizabethan manor house itself is a little gem of the Cotswolds. The gardens include stone walls and flagstone walks, with flowers, yews, herbs, a pond and a medieval dovecote with a flock of white doves. The outbuildings contain still more collections: farm tools, firefighting equipment, cheese-making presses, roasting spits and model villages Wade built. Beyond the gardens, the land swells into velvety green meadows and dark green shrubbery -- a typical, idyllic Cotswold scene.

Charles Paget Wade was right. There is a deep pleasure in observing these treasures. But mostly we admire the simple genius of those who produced them so many years ago. And we mourn their passing.

Joseph R. Cardello lives in Columbia.

LET US HEAR FROM YOU

We want to know about your travels, your experiences, your memories, your pictures. Here's how to participate in this page:

* Give us your recommendations of places to visit. Where are you just back from? Tell us where you've recently visited and what tips you can pass along about your trip to other readers. Or tell us about your favorite destinations. Our current question: What is your favorite foreign country to visit? And why? Please answer in 50 words or less.

* In 500 words or less, tell us about a travel experience that changed you, about the nostalgia a certain place evokes, about the power of a favorite beach, the mountains, a city cafe. (Cash value: $150)

* Give us your best shot -- a terrific travel photo with a description of when and where you took it. Include your name and phone number along with the print. (Cash value: $50)

Because of the volume of re- sponses, photos and manuscripts cannot be individually acknowledged or returned.

Send by fax to 410-783-2519, or write to: Travel Department, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21278.

Baltimore Sun Articles
|
|
|
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.