The Sunnyside Waltz, 1850

The charming, fairytale-looking cottage home of Washington Irving provided the inspiration for this waltz, composed in 1850. “Sunnyside Waltz” was written by Henry T. Oates and dedicated to a Miss Ella Ford of Augusta, Georgia. An original copy of the score sits on the rosewood piano found in Irving’s living room. “We are not musical”, reviewed the Southern Literary Messenger in 1850, “but that we … Continue reading The Sunnyside Waltz, 1850

Rip’s Retreat Roadside Attraction, c.1950s

Washington Irving deliberately kept the exact home of Rip Van Winkle a secret: his classic 1818 short story was just set somewhere in the Catskill Mountains of New York. But the widespread popularity of his tale saw many villages and towns in the area began to name check the long sleeping, hen pecked husband. Rip Van Winkle day tours, garages, diners and hiking trails soon … Continue reading Rip’s Retreat Roadside Attraction, c.1950s