The house was built out on the edge of town and beyond it lay open land - a desert- but in late winter it was covered with a haze of green and a carpet of wild flowers. In the absence of trees and air pollution the family could look out of these windows and see the majestic Sierras almost every day. It was this magnificent winter view that had so captivated Joseph Meux, Dr. Meux's brother, as he made a train trip through the valley, which he wrote back to the family in Tennessee urging them to come to this heavenly spot. The sweep of windows facing south and east give this room an incomparable quality of light. Even on the gloomiest of days the room is cheerful and elicits "ohs" and "ahs" from visitors. Mrs. Meux was not in good health when the family moved here and no doubt spent a great deal of time in this room. In her later years she was both deaf and blind. The family communicated with 'her by means of a glove she wore on which was embroidered the alphabet.


The five-sided bay is the second level of the tower, one of the main features of the exterior.

The walk through closet contains built-in drawers and a small cupboard plus hooks for hanging.

The exterior shutters on the second floor are very important as sun control devices. Their function can be understood especially well in this room since the windows are not covered with curtains. They can be opened and closed in different combinations according to seasonal needs. We really appreciated what an important function they perform when they were down for several months.

When the shutters are open several panes of old window glass are visible with their swirls and waves caused by varying thickness in the glass.

Panels in the three doors are decorated with a paint and glaze technique to look like fancy burl wood. This work is called faux bois (French for false wood - pronounced "foe bwa")

A transom above the hall door allows air circulation when the door is closed.

The walnut-stained mantel is decorated with an Eastlake incised design. Like the other five fireplaces in the house, this one was designed to burn coal.

The combination gas and electric ceiling fixture is one of the most elaborate in the house, combining brass and copper. The gas light bowls are original.

The corner wash basin has a marble top and splashback. The wallpaper is a fancy rococco design much in vogue during the Victorian period- it is not a reproduction of paper in the house. The carpeting, however, is a reproduction by the V'Soske Carpet Co. Although it arrears to be a wall-to-wall piece, it is actually 27"strips carefully matched. When the old carpeting was removed, underneath was a craft paper padding made by Bier Bros., a firm whose factory was destroyed in the 1906 earthquake and never rebuilt.