Twin sisters Marlene Sedillos and Charlene Brownson, Manhattan, can trace their Fort Riley lineage back to 1857 when their great, great-grandfather was a stonemason on Fort Riley.
“(We like to) learn more about the history because (we) haven’t really kept any stories,” Sedillos said during the Historical and Archaeological Society of Fort Riley’s Tour of Homes Dec. 1 on Main Post. “(The tour is) always fun and the houses are decorated beautifully.”
Five homes and three historical buildings including the Custer House, Saint Mary’s Chapel and Main Post Chapel were featured on this year’s tour. Homes were decorated for the holidays in different styles and themes, including a Hawaiian-themed tree with hula girls and surfing Santas.
“I love the Americana rooms and how they blend the Americana into the house,” said Barbara Parker, Temecula, Calif., who extended her visit to Fort Riley specifically to go on the tour.
“For three years I’ve wanted to do it,” she said. “It’s beautiful. It’s a bit of the history and a bit of the style of the wives, so it’s a great blending.”
“I like to open (Quarters One) as much as possible,” said Shand Mayville, wife of Maj. Gen. William Mayville, commander, 1st Infantry Division and Fort Riley. “I really love history and I think that this house has so much historical value on its own.”
Mayville turned over this year’s decorating to Rob Dudley, proprietor of a local home décor store.
“I wanted something different from last year,” Mayville said.
“(Dudley) was just wonderful.”
Mayville worked with Dudley and filled in certain areas with personal touches.
“My husband is very woodsy and so I went with the woodsy theme this year (while he’s deployed) in his honor,” Mayville said.
Volunteers guided visitors through the homes, pointing out various architectural and décor features like ornate hinges, handmade quilts and obsolete phone vestibules.
“It’s just so generous of people to open their homes, their museums,” said Brenda Edleston, Manhattan.
“They were beautifully done,” added Jeanette Pellegrin, Junction City.
“(Attendance has been) amazing,” said Leigh Timmerman, president, HASFR. “The weather’s been great, and I think one of the contributing factors is that (the tour’s scope makes it) more do-able.”
The tour was self-guided and, given the unseasonably warm weather, many visitors chose to walk the route along Main Post.
“(The walking is) very refreshing,” Parker said, adding the hills made it “a bit of a workout.”
By Julie Fiedler
1st Inf. Div. Post
Julie Fiedler | POST
Brenda Werner, vice president, HASFR, left, welcomes twin sisters Marlene Sedillos, center, and Charlene Brownson, right, to Quarters 100 during the tour of homes hosted by HASFR Dec. 1 on Main Post. The sisters came on the tour because they traced their ancestry back to Fort Riley’s founding and wanted to learn more about the post’s history.
Quarters One opens its doors to visitors during the HASFR Tour of Homes Dec. 1 on Main Post.
Meredith Howell, Manhattan, left, and Spc. Trent Meryhew, 1st Sqdn., 6th Cav. Regt., CAB, right, pose in period dress outside the Custer House during the Tour of Homes hosted by HASFR Dec. 1 on Main Post.