Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Nancy Drew 2011 Convention Clues #15

Nancy Drew Stays at Seven Oaks

In book #34, The Hidden Window Mystery, Nancy Drew and her chums stay for a short while at her cousin Susan Carr's home - Seven Oaks. Often when researching one of these Nancy Drew books, Harriet Stratemeyer Adams would include real life places or base places on real life places. When researching the Charlottesville area for the upcoming Nancy Drew Sleuths convention in Charlottesville, I tried Googling some of the place names in the book. Mostly, I didn't come up with anything, but a few things turned up.

Like this gem - a home on the National Register of Historic Places called... SEVEN OAKS! Located outside of Charlottesville, it has some similarities to the home in the book and would have been open for Garden Week back in the time period that Harriet wrote this book (1950s).

In the book, Seven Oaks is described as:

Seven Oaks--about 3 miles outside Charlottesville. A low brick wall ran across the front of the small estate. An iron gateway opened onto a tree-shaded drive with beautiful many-hued flower gardens on either side of it. Facing the end of the drive was a white clapboard two-story colonial house. At the entrance was as mall porch with Doric columns. Above the entrance was a balcony which Susan said opened off her bedroom." Brick paths throughout the garden.

Of course, the real Seven Oaks has gone through changes over the years and Harriet's details may have been a mixing of various homes she visited in the area, but there are some similarities.

Members of the Nancy Drew Sleuths group will briefly stop by this historic home for a photo op.


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