Tudor Place Blog
- June 29, 2017
From a stuffed bird under a dome to manual typewriters to crystal and silver desk sets, the Office at Tudor Place is so densely stuffed with fascinating objects that it can be hard to know where to look first. The room appears almost exactly as it did in the 1920s, when Armistead Peter, Jr., the estate’s third owner, made it his headquarters for correspondence, estate business, and numerous hobbies and collections, reflected in its furnishings today.
Visitors on a second tour or given the chance, as at Tudor Nights or another event, to linger a while, may notice a more ... (continue reading)
- June 12, 2017
Tudor Place Artist-in-Residence Peter Waddell is a history and architectural painter who has created major works with the White House Historical Association, Mount Vernon, the U.S. Capitol and other sites. For Tudor Place, he has created images that depict the house, gardens, and history of the site. This post — and its slideshow — will be updated as Peter makes further changes to his painting of the original Tudor Place wings.
My work frequently starts with someone needing an image of a place in history, usually where no images exist. Sometimes I am asked to record an existing building or interior ... (continue reading)
- May 11, 2017
Tudor Place is the product of all our different pasts. Its artifacts, images, voices, and ghosts—even the all-knowing tulip poplar—carry us back to our own origins as people and as a nation.
Joseph Ellis, Tudor Place: America’s Story Lives Here, Foreword
WASHINGTON, DC – Tudor Place: America’s Story Lives Here, the first full-length book on the Tudor Place estate, collections, and history, has received two prestigious prizes. Deemed “Best Regional Non-Fiction (Mid-Atlantic)” in the Independent Publisher Book Awards, the book was also named top regional title in the Independent Book Publishers Association’s 29th Annual (continue reading)
- May 4, 2017
Completed in February 2017, Phase One of the Master Preservation Plan’s lighting plan called for restoring historic lighting features across the grounds while installing discreet contemporary lighting for enhanced security and esthetics. Improved illumination at the main entrance, along the walkway to the Visitor Center, and on the path to the Dower House look beautiful in daylight and promote visitor safety at evening events.(continue reading)
- May 3, 2017
With environmental stewardship a key aim of the Tudor Place Master Preservation Plan, sound water management becomes an essential goal. The museum will take a key step in that direction this summer with the expected installation of a cistern to conserve and control stormwater run-off. The project expands on past efforts to improve drainage around the historic house, with benefits extending as far as the Potomac watershed.
A decade ago, a new perimeter drainage system at the main house connected existing downspouts to drains installed in window areas. While this system successfully carried water away from the house, the resulting discharge on the South ... (continue reading)
- February 16, 2017
On February 17, 2017, Tudor Place joined hundreds of other museums, historic sites, archives, libraries, science centers and cultural organizations on social media to address confusion over “alternative facts.” This “Day of Facts,” in the words of its grass roots organizers, reaffirmed “values of curiosity, intellectual pursuit and openness. Facts matter, our visitors matter, and we will remain trusted sources of knowledge.”
These are the stories behind the facts shared by Tudor Place:
Marietta Minnigerode Andrews: Artist, Poet and Author
Born in Richmond, Virginia, Marietta Minnigerode Andrews (1869-1931) studied art in ... (continue reading)
- November 23, 2016
As a granddaughter and namesake of Martha Washington, Tudor Place founder Martha Parke Custis Peter inherited several important pieces of her correspondence following the death of the first president.
Since 2015, the University of Virginia has been annotating and publishing the Mrs. Washington’s letters as part of an ongoing partnership between The Washington Papers project (formerly the Papers of George Washington) and the Fred W. Smith National Library for the Study of George Washington at Mount Vernon. Inspired by this project, Tudor Place Archivist Wendy Kail has added to the record by studying her letters and draft replies at ... (continue reading)
- October 20, 2016
Who were they, the founders of Tudor Place? Martha Parke Custis Peter and Thomas Peter, civic leaders in Georgetown and the capital city, helped shape our national life but few Americans today know their names. That anonymity belies the tangible legacy they left, thanks to the constancy of their descendants and an almost genetic devotion to preservation in the lasting family line.
A businessman, landowner, and slaveholder, Thomas began life with great wealth accumulated by his father, a Scottish immigrant. Active in the business of Georgetown and the new city of Washington, he pursued personal interests extending to farming, horse racing, playing his flute (now in the ... (continue reading)
- September 12, 2016
In the state of Maryland, every September 12 is Defenders Day, commemorating a crucial American victory in the War of 1812. The Battle of Fort McHenry helped reverse American losses and also inspired a British prisoner’s poem that became our national anthem. It also recalls a hero with ties to Tudor Place who, less than a month before, had defied U.S. Army superiors to fight the calamitous British attack on Washington.
Tudor Place founder Thomas Peter had no fancy for a military life, but his brother George Peter (1779-1861) did. On August 24, 1814, Major Peter commanded a light artillery company that was one of the few to return ... (continue reading)
- August 25, 2016
Nora Pehrson explains the origins of her essay on Britannia, written while interning here during her senior at Woodrow Wilson High School in Washington, D.C. Nora now attends Colby College in Waterville, Maine.
I was drawn to Britannia’s story because of an abiding interest in women’s history. I wanted to situate Britannia in the broader context of her time. Around the time that Britannia was on the marriage market, the abolitionist and advocate for women’s rights Sarah Grimké wrote “Letters on the Equality of the Sexes,” in which she asserted that the American woman was “a cipher in the nation” because marriage rendered her ... (continue reading)