Pigeons in the Smoke House (Film Footage)
Pigeons in a smoke house? By the 1930s, the Peter family had converted the 1794 Smoke House, seen here, into a pigeon coop. It was most likely Armistead Peter 3rd, whose father owned the estate at the time, who shot these 1940s “home movies” of their brood in flight and perching. (The footage also shows an unidentified man, waving as he passes through the shot.) The film proved a useful reference for the recent restoration of the Smoke House arbor and fly pen, completed October 2017. It provided clues to otherwise elusive details of the pen’s structure, including how the mesh sides were attached to the frame and where the perches sat.