Monday, December 21, 2009

Beekman 1802

Today I received the heirloom tomato seed packets from Landreth Seed Co. via Beekman 1802 Mercantile that I ordered. Their commemorative catalogue is wonderful and the cover is a repro from the original 1884 catalog cover. Inside there are lots of enticements "to all who have occasion to purchase seeds" from the company which was started in 1784 in Philadelphia. There is an African American Heritage Collection with recommendations from Michael Twitty, Culinary Historian of traditional African American Food Culture, a Patio Gardener collection, and a Children's Garden collection. Sprinkled throughout the catalogue are repros of Landreth's advertising posters which are little bit of graphic heaven and testimonials from folks who know, for example, that their bloomsdale parsnips are unsurpassed. While I am preparing for Spring, (to ameliorate the already too cold winter ) I did think that heirloom seeds would make great holiday gifts for gardener friends.

I also received an 1802 hand-forged Britannia fruit spoon made from "an authentic 18th century spoon mold and the alloy Brittania which was popular at the time that the Beekman Mansion was built" which is, aside from being a little sculptural beauty, a utilitarian burnishing tool for my printmaking. But it is so pretty it almost deserves to be mounted on linen in a shadow box frame. I think not yet...but someday.

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