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“As a costumer, you are delving in history all the time,” she says, noting that costumes run the gamut from clothing people wore in caves to imagined clothing of the future. “It took until late the 1980’s for art curators to understand that clothing could actually time a painting.
Costumers knew that a lot earlier; we’d been dating clothes off of paintings for centuries.” Her second motivator was her mother, Phyllis Rena Sanftner, who was curator of Acorn Hall in Morristown and later of the Morristown DAR chapter’s Schuyler-Hamilton House (and which her daughter says she “inherited,” because she also did curatorial work there).
Diane Argraves, DAR honorary state regent, says, “From the attic to the basement, they touched every piece in the house; they sprayed with an antimicrobial agent and wiped it down.” And, Sanftner adds, “Every spoon, every cup, every piece of paneling.
It freaked me out when I saw liquid running down my antique furniture.” Restore My Clothes of Lemoyne, Pennsylvania, took care of the textiles—quilts, linens, curtains, rugs, and napkins. The first Watson to settle in New Jersey, in a log house he built on a bluff facing a creek, was William, a Quaker who in 1684 left England with his children for America “where they could worship God according to the dictates of their own conscience,” according to a DAR history of the Watson House.
For many years it was the finest in the township,” says the history document.
The house, whose 15-inch walls have weathered the years well, has two rooms on the first floor, each with a very large fireplace, three rooms on the second floor, and a garret under the steep roof whose beam construction suggests that “at least some of the builders were ship’s carpenters.” The original dividing strips in the window sashes were lead, and there is some likelihood that they were removed and melted into bullets for Revolutionary War.
Watson served as assessor and constable and his son Isaac as overseer of the highways and constable.
After his father’s death, Isaac Watson built the stone house now called the Isaac Watson House to the east of his father’s log house; the house “was plain but substantial as befit a Quaker household.
She notes that she was patriotic even during the 1960’s.“My stance had to do with religious tendencies; I’m a Quaker, and being antiwar was a basic Quaker philosophy,” she adds.Sanftner got herself so involved in the DAR, that today she also serves as curator of the Isaac Watson House, the headquarters of the New Jersey State Society of the National Society of the DAR, where she has just completed supervision of an extensive mold remediation. The house is right next door to the Tulpehaking Nature Center, which is focused on nature and Native American history.We are committed to bettering the lives of people by making a safer community.
At Art of K9 SG, we recognize our responsibility to the world.After being closed to open houses since April 2015, the NJ DAR is celebrating the renovation and reopening of the Isaac Watson House with a rededication and ribbon cutting, Sept. When Sanftner first saw the house, the core was intact, but it was suffering from neglect.