Discovery #4!!!!!!!!


Let the games begin!

This is the fourth in a series of Discovery posts, and all based on the Bo Adventure!


I picked Bo up at the airport, and we drove the two hours to Emporia, arriving late in the afternoon.

Bo wanted to run through the Cross House before checking into his motel or having dinner. He said to the effect: “I am not waiting another minute to get inside!”

Ahhhhh, a true kindred spirit.

However, as I was to soon learn, Bo is incapable of dashing through an old house. Rather, his approach is more…glacial. I mean, we spent 15 minutes in the west vestibule before even stepping inside!

Eventually, we made it upstairs before the next ice age because I kept grabbing Bo by his shirt and dragging him forward. While I was thoroughly enjoying Bo’s insight and enjoyment, as the hours grew ever later all I could think of was dinner (food! I love food!).

At last, we stood before the door to the 1894 blanket closet. The closet was long ago removed and combined with the adjacent servant’s room, to create…


…motel room #7. But the blanket door remained in situ. Bo opened the door…and immediately noted something which had escaped my attention for three years.




The Cross House abounds with delicious hardware by Yale & Towne. The hardware is not randomly installed but is rather specific:

  • All the entry doors have Kelp-design Y&T hinges.
  • All the interior first-floor doors have hinges featuring a “star” detail from the Y&T Austerlitz pattern.
  • All the second-floor doors have plain, but nonetheless substantial, Y&T hinges.


The “Kelp” hinges on all the entry/vestibule doors.


The interior first-floor Austerlitz hinges.


The second-floor plain hinges.


But…but…I was gobsmacked when Bo asked: “What are Kelp hinges doing on the blanket closet door?”


My mind stopped.

My stomach froze, too, wholly forgetting about pizza at Radius.



I had Kelp hinges on a closet door? Kelp hinges? On a door on the second-floor? A closet door? On a floor where no Kelp hinges should ever be found?

My entire sense of reality collapsed. (This reaction would normally have been MUCH more intense but for the fact that my sense of reality has been experiencing a steady slam-dunk punch since 11/8/16.)

I stared at the inexplicable anomaly.

Bo stared at me, as if expecting an answer to this extraordinary, unfathomable riddle.

I stared.

Bo stared.

I stared.

Bo stared.

I broke this cut-it-with-knife immobility by stating: “Hey! Let’s go out for pizza!”

[NOTE: there may be just a hint of dramatic license in the telling of the above story. But, just a hint.]




  1. Ken on March 18, 2017 at 11:20 pm

    Maybe they were short for some hinges upstairs and recycled some of the front door hinges since they were not used.

  2. Tamara on March 18, 2017 at 11:21 pm

    Well, duh! Those are the hinges that were intended for the west entry doors… and the underscaled, dumb-ass hinges that were installed on the west entry doors were intended for the blanket closet door. Since there is only one closet door and two west entry doors, you might possibly have another upper level door with Kelp hinges. You should probably check for that.

    • Ross on March 19, 2017 at 9:30 am

      I agree: Well, duh!

      I deliberately kept that assumption out of the story with the thought that a readers(s) would posit the idea.

      So I was thrilled to read your comment!

      I also laughed because you got the, ah, terminology spot on! Perfect!

      While writing about Discovery #2, I suddenly thought: Oh! IF hinges WERE ordered for the outer doors, I think I know where some of them ended up!

      • Tamara on March 19, 2017 at 8:38 pm

        You are a sneaky man, Ross. Sneaky!

  3. B. Davis on March 19, 2017 at 2:19 am

    Love your writing. I can feel your feelings and hear your voice as you share your experiences. And so funny! Food solves a lot of riddles. Or at least it postpones them.

    This should have been writing #1, as this first happened when he arrived, setting the pace and tone of the mighty Bo adventures in the Cross house. It would have been neat to have video taped, and then have you do a voice over of your thoughts. Garfield like. xo

    • Ross on March 19, 2017 at 9:33 am

      Thank you, Ms. Davis!

      I was actually laughing while writing the post! I had no idea when I began that it would veer off in such a direction!

  4. Brandy on March 19, 2017 at 7:59 am

    Such a cliffhanger, Ross! That’s right up there with “Who shot J.R.?”

    Can’t wait for the conclusion, surely Bo wouldn’t leave with a mystery unsolved?!?

  5. Suella on March 19, 2017 at 10:00 am

    Ross, I tried to do a little internet research to back up my idea, but I didn’t really find anything about Austerlitz hinges. Of course that only had the little voice in my head, reminding me once again…Don’t believe everything you think! But, when I look at the design on the Austerlitz hinge, it looks like a flower to me. Then I wondered, ‘What does an Edelweiss look like?’ When the first picture the internet brought up was this, I thought, OMIGOSH! It even describes an Edelweiss as a star-shaped flower. Could it be?


  6. Bo on March 19, 2017 at 10:30 am

    Much to my shame as a member of the Antique Doorknob Collectors of America (2017 convention in Indianapolis), I never even came up with a theory. That one is a real stumper.

  7. B. Davis on March 19, 2017 at 10:58 am

    My easy theory is that they ordered a box of hinges, they had some left over (and couldn’t return them), needed some….used some. Perhaps we’re over thinking this one.

    Likely there isn’t a reason other than “they were there, so we used them”.

    • Ross on March 19, 2017 at 7:13 pm

      And you might well be correct!

  8. JET Texas on March 19, 2017 at 4:33 pm

    In the first picture, is that little door on the right the dumb waiter door?

    • Ross on March 19, 2017 at 7:06 pm

      That is the laundry chute door. Soooooo cute!

  9. Cody H on March 20, 2017 at 2:57 am

    Are your intentions to recreate the lost blanket closet, or keep the expanded bedroom? I’d be pretty torn over that decision myself.

    • Ross on March 21, 2017 at 11:09 am

      I am creating a suite for myself at the back of the house.

      The Long Bedroom will be mine. Its 1894 closet was enlarged and turned into a bathroom in 1929. I am returning it to a closet.

      In 1929, the original blanket closet and housekeeper’s room were combined into an apartment. I will keep this change, and am turning the room into my expansive bathroom.

  10. Bryan from Louisiana. on March 21, 2017 at 10:31 am

    I’m at work in tears laughing so hard.

    “Bo stared at me, as if expecting an answer to this extraordinary, unfathomable riddle.

    I stared.

    Bo stared.

    I stared.

    Bo stared.

    I broke this cut-it-with-knife immobility by stating: “Hey! Let’s go out for pizza!”

    OMG! I love you guys.

    • Bo on March 21, 2017 at 11:06 am

      I then ate a whole pizza. It was very tasty.

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