We visited Winterthur, the Henry Francis du Pont estate in Delaware, last weekend at the invitation of Charles F. Hummel, the curator and scholar whose 1968 book, “With Hammer in Hand” (reprinted in 1973), describes three generations of Dominy craftsmen in East Hampton and the objects they made — clocks, chairs, case pieces, looking glasses, tables — as well as the conservative rural culture here from the early 18th century to the mid-19th.
Less house, more trees. My mother has few maxim-worthy beliefs on the subject of real estate. A child of the Depression and second World War, her people didn’t think it wise to “put too much money in bricks.” Even after her father became a man of some means, the family didn’t move from their modest Philadelphia row house. (Though my mother’s mother would come to possess quite a bit of diamond and platinum jewelry — one ring affectionately referred to as “the flashlight.”)
School district budget planning has recently been without customary fireworks. In part, this is because a state cap on how much taxes can be increased has taken the heat out of the process, with a supermajority of voter approval necessary to pierce the cap. This is not to suggest that school spending is unimportant; rather, as the work educators do gets ever more complex, how money is allotted remains key.