June 30, 2010 | Just outside of Baltimore in Towson, Maryland is the Hampton National Historic Site, part of the National Park Service since 1948, when it was the first site to receive recognition for architectural merit. Built in a popular Georgian domestic style, the mansion is a series of three main units connected by recessed "hyphens," stretching 175 feet across a large hill. A thirty-four-foot tall cupola surmounts the central unit, creating a palatial effect that some called "pretentious" during its construction in the late eighteenth century. Today, the mansion is the decorative and architectural centerpiece of the site, but extant farm buildings introduce the servants, slaves, and farmers who ran the estate for its long tenure as a successful farm. These buildings include everything from an orangerie and greenhouses to stone slave quarters and an icehouse, making Hampton a rare example of an eighteenth and nineteenth century plantation and farm left intact.
Seven generations of t…» More
by Émile Jacques Ruhlmann (1879-1933), 1926. Macassar ebony, amaranth, and ivory. Metropolitan Museum of Art. By Cynthia Drayton» View All