Mount Vernon News
 
 
Ron Barnhill works to trim and place the wallpaper border for a hallway in the Woodward Opera House. Barnhill is working to apply all the wallpaper additions within the project to restore the Woodward Opera House.
Ron Barnhill works to trim and place the wallpaper border for a hallway in the Woodward Opera House. Barnhill is working to apply all the wallpaper additions within the project to restore the Woodward Opera House. (Photo by Emily Weaver) View Image

By Mount Vernon News
December 13, 2013 10:40 am EST

 

MOUNT VERNON — One might think that once the proverbial door is closed on history that it may never be opened again. In the case of the Woodward Opera House, the door that was closed long ago has since been opened to find a treasure. Some of the original wallpaper in the Woodward Opera House has remained intact since its believed beginning in the 1850s, and the same prints found in rooms on the second floor are now being applied in a whole new way. Wallpaper that was found within the walls of the Woodward Opera House is being used in the restoration project by being scanned and reprinted to cover the walls of the renovated second floor.

“All the wallpaper that we’re using in here actually was used in the Woodward at one point in time,” said Aubrey Brown at the Knox County Visitors Bureau. “As we’ve done the restoration we’ve gone back through the wallpaper layers to find appropriate wallpaper for the time period. Everything you see in front of you is actually from the 1850s and ’60s,” said Brown. The wallpapers range from intricate designs to repetitive patterns that, unless they are hit with light the walls look rather tame.

The infamous “Egyptian room” is covered with paper that has hidden and intricate hieroglyphics.

Brown said that once they find a sample of the wallpaper, local business Wolff House Wallpapers, owned and operated by Corby Wise, then works to reproduce the wallpaper for the entire room.

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