The Historic Five Mile House  

Five Miles Southeast of Charleston, Illinois







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Added 5/09 - From Libby Coffey's estate auction.  Libby Coffey was a one time volunteer at Lincoln Log Cabin and long time re-enactor who recently passed away.  A number of antique and reproduction items were purchased at her estate auction for the FMH living history program.  We also acquired a modern six foot folding table as well as a Duncan Phyfe sofa which will go in the auction in September.







  Added 4/09 - Board member Nancy Easter-Shick donated six sets of Graces games and six rolling hoops for use in the school program. These were ordered on line from Living and were very popular with the school children.






Added: 4/09 - On April 11th, Phil & Holly Glosser and Tom Vance traveled to a flea market east of Oblong, Illinois and purchased a "spider" or cast iron skillet with legs and with a lid as well as an early cast iron pot with a lid. Spiders are used like a Dutch Oven to bake on the hearth. They very difficult to find and they almost never have a lid when you do, so this was quite the discovery.  Holly is shown to the left with John Shelton who sold them to us.


Added: 1/09 - Tom and Sue Vance attended their nephew's wedding in New Hampshire in October, 2008 and then spent a couple of days antiquing for the Five Mile House up the coast of Maine.  They were looking for items for furnishing the Five Mile House kitchens and period covers for the two rope beds (already in the collection) that will be set up this year. 

     One shop yielded a good supply of early 20th century Staffordshire which is a reproduction of the early 19th century china.  It is actually perfect for living history situations where the china will be used and might be broken as it is relatively plentiful and about 1/10 or less the cost of it's 19th century counterparts. 





One mid 19th century platter and bowl were found at a reasonable cost.


Left is a stove kettle for use in the 1860s kitchen and two very nice overshot coverlets for use on the rope beds.


Above is a fabulous 1840s quilt that was found in one shop.  It is pieced in long strips with typical 1840s fabric, the batting

is cotton and occasional cotton seeds can be felt indicating it's pre-cotton gin date. As expected it is all hand-sewn.


A spinning wheel wasn't necessarily on the list, but this one was found at a price of $80.00, less than 1/4 its value.  It needs

a couple of repairs, but will be in good working condition with a little cleaning.  This is a walking wool wheel where the

wool is spun off the spindle with the left hand while the wheel is turned with the right hand. The shorter wheel that is foot

operated is a flax wheel that can also be used to spin wool which is fed in with both hands.