Saturday, October 8, 2011

Kingston Addition - Barnsley Gardens
The search for appropriate structures can reveal surprising and exciting elements to include into a layout theme. Building a southern railroad, one image is the classic plantation or mansion. I chose Kingston for the site given the area I wanted to cover. My visits to Kingston included trips to a few of these places. My choice was Barnsley Gardens, the contemporary name. At the time it was known as "Woodlands". Barnsley was the name of the plantation owner, Godfrey Barnsley. An Englishman, whose father was a cotton trader, Godfrey built his "Italianate" mansion in the 1840's in the town of Adairsville, just north of Kingston...close enough for selective compression. I was attracted to its uniqueness in form and story. The brick structure was one attraction. Another was that Barnsley landscaped his estate with exotic flora, importing a wide variety of trees and shrubs. This alone I thought would make a striking scene. And although Barnsley traded in cotton, he did not own slaves, slavery being contrary to his beliefs. Matter of fact he paid all his workers. 

Today all that remains are the ruins. However the site is currently used for a variety of public events and, as you can see, is manicured to a similar state as the 1850's. Barnsley was also renown for his unique green roses.  

 Layout Positioning

In these two views the white box represents the approximate estate location. Christopher, my resident finishing carpenter and master modeler, built a knoll to replicate the actual area, according to our research. Kingston is still being developed but is seen by the structures in the right photo distance.

Chris started with mock ups from a print I acquired. Using foam core, and pleased by the workability of this material, he decided to keep this for the final construction. He has been [painfully in my view] meticulous. But as you see, his exactness pays off. The print I mention is shown in the far right photo. 

The nearly complete structure with the creator. Christopher has chosen doors and windows by Grandt Line. The brick walls are textured paper with adhesive backing from Micro Mark. I am almost certain that the roof was metallic. Given Barnsley's attention to detail and financial resource, Chris decided to use styrene and build the roof to resemble copper. He also built Lee & Gordon's Mills which you can or will be able to view elsewhere on this blog.  

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