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Welcome to the Thomas Day/Union Tavern website! The primary mission of the TDH/UTR is to preserve the legacy of free black cabinetmaker, Thomas Day. Thomas Day House is open as a museum, showcasing Day's craftsmanship and offering tours, educational seminars, town functions and more. Our non-profit organization continues it's mission of restoration funded through membership dues, grants, fundraisers and donations.
A free black born circa 1801 near Emporia, Virginia, Thomas Day came to Milton in Caswell County, North Carolina in 1823. He opened a cabinet shop and built furniture according to the popular designs of the time. He made furniture for NC Governor David S. Reid and for other leading citizens of the state. A collection of his furniture, including many of the Reid pieces, is on permanent display at the North Carolina Museum of History in Raleigh. At the height of his career, he was said to be one of the top four furniture makers in the state.
Historic Milton will come to life with holiday cheer and a plethora of events planned for family and friends! You may float from one event to another and enjoy refreshments from many of our merchants and register for a free gift at some. All merchants will be having special sales just for this event. Please plan to join us on December 7th as we invite the Christmas Spirit for 2013!
On September 22nd, 7 brothers and sisters, all descendants of Thomas Day, met in Milton to attend the Milton Presbyterian Church and tour the Thomas Day House. When asked how it felt to sit in the pews that Tom Day had built in the early 1800's, the overwhelming response was, "Very emotional."
Known as The Virginia Pile, this Halifax County group of women have remained friends since high school. Each year they meet to renew their friendship and catch up. They enjoy history and coming back home. This group recently stayed at Breezy Oaks Farmhouse in Alton, VA. On Sept. 11, 2013 they toured the Thomas Day house, the shops of Milton, The Woodside Inn Bed and Breakfast, Milton, NC and Virginia International Raceway.
On Friday, July 19, 2013, several members and board members of the Thomas Day House/Union Tavern Restoration Inc. went to Washington, DC to tour the exhibit of Thomas Day at the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. The exhibit entitled, "Thomas Day: Master Craftsman and Free Man of Color" was based on an exhibition organized by the North Carolina Museum of History and supported by the James Renwick Alliance. The vast exhibit displayed numerous works of Thomas Day, featuring items such as a cradle, a bedroom set from Governor Reids collection and the family Bible.