CAA/CWF Symposia


First thing this morning (well, after a leisurely, social breakfast), Richard Nicoll formally welcomed the symposium participants to the event and to Colonial Williamsburg.

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Then, in today’s first full round of lectures, we heard talks on the carriage-building industry in Warsaw, Poland, over several centuries; the life and times of painter C. Cooper Henderson; commercial freighting lines in the Old West; carriage appointments and what they can tell us about the vehicle and its occupants; and carriage lamps.

As usual at these events, we’re off to a very good start in the food department as well. Here’s just one plate that was on offer during the afternoon break … not to be confused with the morning break, or the midday break. 

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Finally, here are a couple of photos of an adorable little model train that a CAA member brought to share with fellow symposium participants. The “cars” are carriages, and the entire train is only a couple of inches tall.

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Yesterday was a long one: up super early for a 7:00 a.m. flight to Virginia, finally arriving in the early afternoon. Then an afternoon of registering symposium participants, and then taking photos of the beautiful food at the evening welcome reception.

Due to a couple of technical issues I won’t bore you with, I can’t process those photos here, so I can’t share them with you yet. But all issues have now been resolved, so I should be able to post some photos, later this evening, from today’s events.

Stay tuned!

Please forgive this super-quick post today. The March issue of The Carriage Journal is finished (yaaaay) and at the printer. And now I need to go run some errands (and pack) before leaving insanely early tomorrow for our fourth CAA/CWF International Carriage Symposium. Look for symposium updates here and on Twitter starting tomorrow evening.

And my other good reason for leaving a bit early? The fire-alarm folks are testing our alarms at the moment. Eeek!

One of the reasons I love working on publications projects for the Carriage Association is that, when they come back from the printer, I can hold the finished project in my hands. And speaking of publications projects … much of my summer this year was taken up with the design and layout of the CAA’s newly re-envisioned and completely redesigned World on Wheels journal. From 2009 through 2011, we’d published a small (6×9 inches), black-and-white journal containing longer articles than we can typically feature in The Carriage Journal. Many of these were printed versions of lectures given at the International Carriage Symposia that the CAA hosts every other winter, with the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

The content (long, in-depth articles, taken from symposium lectures) hasn’t changed much, but everything else has. In re-envisioning the World on Wheels, we decided to publish it every other year instead of annually but to make it bigger, longer, and much, much more colorful.

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As you’ve probably guessed by now, we’ve received our copies of this year’s World on Wheels from the printer. And, if I do say so myself, it’s gorgeous!!

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If you’d like to order a copy, you can find it in the CAA’s online shop, or you can call the CAA office at 859-231-0971. The books are $27.50 each, plus shipping, but current CAA members get a ten-percent discount on all orders.

It’s been quite a long while since I’ve shared any of the Glimpses of the World photos.

Today’s photo doesn’t have any horses or vehicles in it … at least not that we can see. But, if you happen to have a copy of the January 2011 issue of The Carriage Journal, you may’ve read Andres Furger’s article on Swiss traveling carriages. In that article — and in his 2010 CAA / CWF International Carriage Symposium lecture, in case you were at Colonial Williamsburg and heard it — he talked about this very same St. Gotthard Pass.

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The photo’s caption in Glimpses of the World says, “The king of Alpine routes from Switzerland to Italy is the St. Gotthard. It is impossible to speak too highly of this noble road. Scaling the loftiest cliffs, spanning the wildest torrents, and winding through the deepest gorges, it seems like a gigantic chain, which man, the Victor, has imposed upon the vanquished Alps; the first end guarded by the Lion of Lucerne, the last sunk deep in the Italian lakes, but all the intervening links kept gilded brightly by the hand of trade! It is a splendid instance of the way in which these roads are made to thwart at every turn the sudden fury of the avalanche or mountain torrent. For where experience proves a place to be unusually exposed, a solid roof extends to break the fall of rocks and ice. Still, in these days of steam and telegraph, even this mode of travel in the Alps appears too slow for those who journey here for business purposes, and one of the most important works of this or any age is the tunnel of St. Gotthard. This perforates yonder chain of mountains for a distance of nine and one half miles, yet is sufficiently wide for two railway trains to run abreast. What labor must have been expended here by myriads of men, who most of the time were thousands of feet beneath the mountains, yet who at last, by the perfection of engineering skill, met and shook hands through the narrow aperture which they had pierced from the opposite sides of Switzerland and Italy!”

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