Happy National Walnut Day! While this holiday was created to celebrate the hard-shelled nut the walnut tree produces, we are instead “going nuts” about a few objects made with the beautifully-grained wood at the heart of the tree.
To early Valley settlers, walnut wood was one of the most important natural resources the region offered. Local craftsmen used walnut in house construction, to build furniture, and to make any number of small, everyday objects. Check out some of our favorite walnut objects in the MSV Collection!
Tall Case Clock with clockworks by Goldsmith Chandlee (1751-1821) and case by Jonathan Ross (1748-1832), Winchester and Frederick County, VA, 1787. Walnut, yellow pine, iron, brass, steel. Collection of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, 2010.0012, donated in memory of Rezin Edward Pidgeon (1897-1984). Photo by Ron Blunt.
Fall-front Desk by John Shearer, Frederick County, MD, 1808. Walnut, oak, tulip poplar. Collection of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, 2013.09.1. Photo by Ron Blunt.
Box, maker unknown, Shenandoah County, VA, 1800-1850. Walnut, sulfur inlay. Collection of the Museum of the Shenandoah Valley, 2001.0013.437. Photo by Ron Blunt.