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The dedication and demonstration of a handmade replica of a nineteenth century cabinet maker’s workbench, a project of the M-WTCA, will be accompanied by tours of homes with Thomas Day architectural elements and buildings by the noted builders of brick structures, the Cosbys.


Several members of M-WTCA including Bill Anderson, Brian Coe, Ed Hobbs and Roy Underhill have planned, designed, and made by hand a historically accurate reproduction of a nineteenth century cabinet maker’s workbench stocked with period tools.  The workbench and tool display will be dedicated at the Thomas Day House/Union Tavern on Saturday, November 19.  Cabinet makers will be on hand to demonstrate the use of the workbench and tools.



Walk where Thomas Day made his furniture, and into houses where he personally designed and supervised the construction of his expressive and unique architectural elements.  Walk around and in the buildings the Cosbys designed, made bricks for, and had their brick masons and carpenters build.  The work of both of these artisans was in high demand in the mid-nineteenth century and remains so today throughout North Carolina and Virginia.

The Thomas Day House at 148 Broad Street in Milton, NC in cooperation with the Halifax County Historical Society is sponsoring tours of the Day museum, five Day houses, and seven Cosby houses and buildings.  The “Fall Foliage House Tours” will take place in Halifax County, Virginia, and Milton, NC, on the fall weekend of November 19 and 20.  The Thomas Day House/Union Tavern Restoration, Inc. and the Day houses will be open from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm on Saturday, November 19.  The Cosby houses and buildings will be open from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm on Sunday, November 20. 


The Thomas Day House will be free to the public on Saturday, November 19 (at other times there is a charge).  For the tours of the Day houses and Cosby houses and buildings there will be a charge of $20.00 for the two day event with a one day ticket costing $15.00.  The house tours are a fund raiser for the Historical Society to help cover publication costs of their upcoming Architectural History of Halifax County.


For an additional charge of $12.00 a box lunch will be available Saturday at the Oak Tree Tavern on the grounds of the Virginia International Raceway for those who reserve one in advance.  Tuesday, November 15, is the cut off date for box lunch reservations.  Oak Tree Tavern also known as the plantation house “Southbend” contains Day architectural elements and will be a part of the home tour.


Saturday, November 19, will feature the architectural elements and furniture of the famous cabinet maker and free person of color, Thomas Day (1801 – 1861).  Day ran his very successful shop from 1823 to 1860.  The majority of his clientele was composed of the planters, merchants, and professional people along the Dan River basin stretching from Eden, North Carolina to Clarksville, Virginia.  Six homes in Halifax County that contain Thomas Day work will be on the tour. 


Sunday, November 20, will feature the work of the famous house builders and brick manufactures Dabney Cosby, Sr., Dabney Cosby, Jr., and Howard Cosby.  Eight buildings will be on the tour including government and professional buildings, a church, and homes that were built by the Cosbys.  Their brick architecture will be featured.  Home owners and docents will be at each location to explain the history and distinctive elements for each structure.  Light refreshments will be served at one of the Sunday tour stops.


For additional information:

Visit -   http://www.halifaxcountyhistoricalsociety.org


            http://www.ncmuseumofhistory.org  Exhibits then Behind the Veneer


Sale Dates


Tickets on sale September 24 through November 20, 2011

Cut off date for box lunch tickets is Tuesday, November 15, 2011



$20.00 for two day ticket

$15.00 for one day ticket

$12.00 for separate box lunch ticket



Email – This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Call –     (434)822-8967

Write – Halifax County Historical Society  (send checks for tickets and lunch)

             PO BOX 601                                   (reservations to this address)

             South Boston, VA 24592






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