Formal Parlor Restoration
The formal parlor of Sandusky is the most historical space in the house. This parlor was used as Union headquarters during the Battle of Lynchburg and has held guests such as presidents Thomas Jefferson (guest of Charles Johnston), William McKinley, and Rutherford B. Hayes (both on the staff of general Hunter). The formal parlor was by far the most refined space throughout the occupancy of the three major owners. Primarily, the room was reserved for use during visits by important guests and occasionally weddings and funerals.
Restoration of the Formal Parlor was begun in 2005 and officially finished in the fall of 2014. Throughout the restoration process, the parlor was returned to its approximate look of 1864. In 1864, the room would have been styled after the 1840/1850 period French reproduction and empire style. These would have been popular styles in the parlor of a middle-class home and is what can be seen in the restored parlor today.
The parlor holds a combination of period, reproduction and original furniture all in the empire style. Use of Hutter original furniture in the room showcases some of the pieces that were present during the Union occupation of the house during the Battle of Lynchburg. The reproduction and period pieces present allow visitors to get a full view of the way the room would have been set up by the Hutter family. The picture featured bottom right, shows the room set up to depict how it would have looked on the night of June 17, 1864, at the end of the first day of the Battle Of Lynchburg.
Many of the design elements featured in the formal parlor were chosen through extensive research on the period and through documentation and recollection of Hutter descendants.