Friday, October 10, 2008

Imagine A Gunfighter

Gunfighter on the Streets of Calvert
Imagine how it was, on the streets of Calvert, back in the times when cowboys and sheriffs or city marshalls, took their long, careful walks, back and forth on the same brick sidewalks that we walk on today. Squinting, searching for any signs of problems.
Think of ladies in sweeping long skirts, carrying a parasol and a drawstring bag, and wearing a bonnet on their heads, almost floating over the sidewalks as they moved from store to store.
Picture children in elaborate clothes, miniature adults, wearing high topped shoes or boots, hanging onto a hat, or standing on the base of a light pole, impatiently waiting on a friend or a grownup.
Can you see the time when horses and wagons rattled and clopped on dirt and brick streets of Calvert, then parked while the shopped on Main Street?
"It looks like 'Gone With The Wind'!" one visitor said as she spotted ladies in their finery on the lawn of the old Barton House in Calvert during the Victorian Tea, Gala, and Street Fair in Calvert last Saturday.
The above photo is of a gunfighter from "Cow Town" (Ft. Worth, that is!) , part of a reenactment group that walked Main Street.
I stopped by Mud Creek Pottery to talk to Sonny about the Plein Aire Painting Workshop Saturday Oct. 18th. We're hoping for a good turnout when Virginia Vaughan comes to Calvert to do the first ever Plein Aire Painting Workshop there. Sonny was all dressed up for the day as an iron monger.
Barbara and I had lunch at the Wooden Spoon where we visited with Rita and her coworker. Barbara had already painted the old Salazar's Garage building before I got to town. We then went over to Zamykal Kolache Shop where we sat on a bench to sketch for a little while. A caricature artist from Houston, Eva Myles, was set up on the opposite side of the shop, doing portraits.
Larry, from the antique shop next door, passed by, wearing a flowing black cape and tall black boots.
Further down the street, there were more booths set up with all kinds of wares, and people strolled the streets in their Victorian costumes.
We were joined by a cousin, Melanie, a native of Louisiana, but now living in Austin, and her two beautiful daughters, Olivia and Emma. This, of course, called for an auto tour of Calvert, to locate the old family homes and share stories.
The day ended with supper at the Dixie Cafe in Hearne. We all went our separate ways to Bryan, Austin, and Calvert.
I had hoped that we would get to see people in the park for the gala, dressed in their Victorian clothing, dancing, and having a big time.
I only did one sketch during the afternoon, and Barbara did several pen and ink sketches. I worked a bit large, on watercolor paper, thinking I would do this picture in watercolors, eventually. But I did take some photos that I will put into a slide show, probably. One thing that I need to remember to do is to get pictures of us sketching!
It was a beautiful day to be out and a great day for the Victorian event.
Some people remarked about how hot the ladies must be in all those clothes. However, I experienced, in my Pilgrimage dresses, that they were very cool in hot weather, with a breeze blowing up my skirt! And we wore a lot of those corsets, petticoats, merry widows, stockings, girdles, and all that, when I was college age. It wasn't so bad. Girdles and stockings were bad because they made heat rash, in the very hot days. And all the shoes made blisters, being made of very stiff leather and not fitting well. The dresses were also warm in the winter, depending on the fabric.
If you didn't get to go this year, make plans for next year. And, coming up, there is the Christmas Tour of Homes.
We picked up a flyer in the Wooden Spoon for a Ghost Type of Experience, to be held there November 1. That should prove to be very interesting.
Kyle told me about the First Baptist Church in Calvert Homecoming Sunday. They are observing their 139th year.
Pass the information on about the Plein Aire Painting Workshop Saturday Oct.25. Come, and bring a friend! There is so much to paint in Calvert!
Look at the top of my page, on the sidebar, to find out more. To see her work, go to her website at
We would like to get reservations in by October 13th, with a deposit of half-$40. The balance to be paid at the workshop.
Virgina works primarily in oils, but other media such as watercolors or acrylics are also welcome. She is an experienced artist and teacher. All skill levels are welcome. Contact Cecelia at for a supply list and information. Or Sonny at Mud Creek Pottery in Calvert.

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