The History of the Night

Historic houses, period rooms, and battle field sites all engage the public in typical daytime historic activities. Cooking, weaving, iron forging, and other domestic chores are all public engagement activities that are choreographed for a sensual experience and a deeper understanding of the historic culture of the time. What is usually missing is the dark….

Pilgrimage-Arlington House visit

By Annie Coggan Two years ago, I had a relationship with a building. I had seen a online photo of the Robert E. Lee Arlington House and had fallen in love. From the picture the historic house was perfectly appointed with the victoriana that most antebellum houses required and this house had many secrets. It…

Historic Homes, Whiteness and Places of the Past

 By William Riehm At the beginning of this year, Ani DiFranco,folksinger, artist, and founder of Righteous Babe Records, announced a “Righteous Retreat” for writers and artists at Nottoway Plantation. This choice of location, an 1859  italianate and Greek revival antebellum mansion on the Mississippi River between Baton Rouge, Louisiana and New Orleans, immediately drew a…

Archive- building simple

Saturday in a fit of cabin fever, I went to Chelsea to see a show. Jeff Bailey’s jewel box gallery is far over on 11th ave, but the warmth and intelligence of is small show entitled Simple Means is extraordinary. Pairing contemporary work with items from the Mount Lebanon Shaker community, contemporary art never loved so righteous…