Sunday, November 18, 2012

Moran Place - The Dining Room Chandelier

Construction on the house began in 1895 and obviously did not include electricity.  The house wasn't wired until the 1920's/1930's.  So this beautiful chandelier is not original to the house and not as old as you might think. Nathan (Bub) and Maria (Ria) Moran were living in Kansas City but moved back to Moran Place in the late 1960's after the death of Nathan's parents James H. Moran III and Virginia Shumate Moran.  During the early 1970's Ria mentioned she did not like the dining room fixture which had been installed when the house was wired for electricity.  She wanted a chandelier.  Being a thoughtful husband, Bub purchased this chandelier as a gift for his wife.  It was probably purchased from a wholesaler in Martin and was new when it was purchased. 

Bub, with help from his younger son Kent, installed the chandelier in the dining room himself.  Kent remembers that it was exceedingly heavy and they had to drill holes into the ceiling beams in order to secure the chandelier in place.  He also remembers after the center structure was installed that he and his dad had to add the arms onto the center piece.  

On April 29, 2003, at 3:59 am an earthquake took place in Fort Payne Alabama.  It was given a magnitude of 4.6 and the effects were felt even in Dresden.  Mrs. Moran said that she felt the earthquake and that her bed shook waking her up that morning.  Later that day she found a crystal had fallen from the chandelier and landed into the centerpiece bowl below.  A result of the house shaking during the earthquake.

As to what happened to the original ceiling fixture?  It, like most everything else that entered Moran Place, was stored somewhere inside the rambling Victorian home.

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