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Are You My Cousin?: Mounting Blocks

Are You My Cousin?

Discovering My Ancestors -- One Cousin at a Time

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Location: Raleigh, North Carolina

I tell the stories of my ancestors’ lives. Whether they lived 20 years ago or 200 years ago, they each have a story to tell. Some ancestors tell their stories willingly. Others must have their stories carefully teased from the records. Sometimes the stories are sad. Sometimes the stories are happy. Sometimes the stories are just funny. Regardless, my ancestors’ stories shaped their lives and the lives of those that followed. Come and share in the tales!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Mounting Blocks

Mounting Block at Pleasant Grove Christian Church
Halifax, VA

On my recent genealogy "tour" of Halifax County, VA, I encountered these two structures I had never seen before. They are the mounting blocks for getting into and out of carriages. They are also referred to as carriage steps and common in the 19th century. Can't you just see ladies in their Sunday best mounting the steps to get into their carriage? Hmm....I wonder if my great x 3 grandmother Sarah Owen Talbott walked these steps (at Pleasant Grove). Have I placed my feet where hers were?
Mounting Block at Harmony United Methodist Church
Alton, VA



Blogger Renate said...

Lisa, those are cool pictures. Those look a bit different than the one I've seen (personally) at an old plantation in NC, but the caretaker explained that the mounting block (that's what he called it) there, also served as an "auction block" during slave auctions. I wonder if it was common practice for these to have this dual usage, or if that was just the case on that one plantation? Hmmm...

Thanks for sharing your pictures.


May 2, 2010 at 4:26 PM  
Blogger Betty said...

Lisa, I had never heard of these before--thanks for sharing!

May 2, 2010 at 7:25 PM  
Blogger Harriet said...

Thanks for sharing these cool pictures! I haven't seen anything like this before.

May 3, 2010 at 8:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The Village of Fairport in New York State, a community of about 6000, has mounting blocks and hitching posts at 26 locations. The Fairport Historic Preservation Commission has just designated as landmarks those that are on the treelawn area of Village property. Our historic society has been instrumental in this effort to preserve these unique artifacts. Check out www, under About and Historic Tours. Also you will find information on the ones designated under History then Village Preservation.

April 13, 2011 at 11:04 AM  

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