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ArtsLink Plans Homes Tour

By Staff | Nov 11, 2009

The Mensore home in Beechwood Estates

A tour of six unique homes in the New Martinsville area will be a feature of this year’s ArtsLink December exhibit. The exhibit, scheduled for 2 p.m., Dec. 6, at the Francis Creative Arts Center, will again feature nativity scenes from around the world. It will be followed at 3 p.m. by a self-guided tour of six magnificent homes that capture the style of today and yesterday. Four are classic Victorian homes in downtown New Martinsville and two are modern architectural gems in Beechwood Estates east of New Martinsville.

The Beechwood Estates homes belong to John Charles and Trish Mensore and Rob and Natalie Christen. The Victorian homes include the Magnolia House B & B, the McEldowney house owned by Betsy Chandler, and the Charles Shepherd home, all on Maple Avenue, and the home of Harry and Fran Caldwell on Eliza Street, the only brick street left in the city.

Advanced tickets for the tour, which will run from 3-6 p.m., may be purchased from Occasions Gifts on Main Street or from Fran Caldwell at 455-5092. Tickets are $10 each and may also be purchased at the Francis Center on the day of the tour. Visitors may view the nativity exhibit, enjoy light refreshments, and head out on the tour.

The Caldwell home on Eliza Street was built at the turn of the century for an oil and gas man.

The Ingram Myers family bought it a few years later and lived there until their children left the nest. The Caldwells purchased their Victorian home in 1971.

The Caldwell home on Eliza Street.

It has six fireplaces with the original tile and mantels. The original woodwork remains except for the floors, which were replaced after the 1936 flood.

The Mensore home was one of the first homes built in the Beechwood Estates development.

This Georgian Colonial-style home was custom built for George and Carol Couch.

Proceeds from the event benefit ArtsLink activities, including concerts, exhibits, classes, and many free school activities. While the homes tour is not necessarily universally accessible, the Francis Center is. Persons with special needs may contact Donna Earley, administrative coordinator, at 304-455-2278 for assistance.