Welcome to Staatsburgh State Historic Site's blog! Learn more about the Gilded Age home of Ruth and Ogden Mills!

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Preventative Conservation Workshop 2017 Part III:
Clocks of Staatsburgh

During June 2017, aspiring conservators from around the country attended a 2 week intensive preventative conservation workshop at Staatsburgh.  This was the second year that the workshop was held at Staatsburgh with sponsorship from The Foundation for the American Institute for Conservation along with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities.  The workshop taught in-depth methods of caring for many different types of collections. Participants gained insight into artifact conservation and the conditions that cause deterioration. After the workshop, several of the participants wrote blog entries about their experience and a specific aspect of the workshop.

NYS Bureau of Historic Sites Furniture Conservator, David Bayne, organized this workshop to occur at Staatsburgh collaborating on its organization with Independent Conservator Cathy MacKenzie.  Several conservators participated in the workshop's instruction including  Kirsten Schoonmaker from the Shelburne MuseumValentine Talland formerly from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and Michelle Smith, most recently at the National Library of France.

Part III in this series was written by Aubrey Skye Quasney, an artist, historian, and aspiring conservator from Pasadena, Maryland. In 2013, she graduated from the Maryland Institute College of Art in Baltimore, Maryland with a Bachelor’s of Fine Arts in Art History and Painting. Since then she has interned at the Walters Art Museum assisting with the curation and conservation of Islamic Arts for the traveling exhibition, Pearls on a String. Currently, she is museum director of the System Source Computer Museum in Hunt Valley, Maryland where she oversees the curating, restoration, and collection management. As an artist, she likes to bring creativity to all that she does, from painting portraits to finding new ways to present artifacts within museum collections. She is passionate about our collective histories and preserving them for the future through restoration, photography, and writing. She continues to work towards becoming a conservator of objects, with a specific interest in clock and watch restoration.

AIC Workshop Participant and Blog Author Aubrey Quasney

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Preventative Conservation Workshop 2017 Part II: Exploring the Library

During June 2017, aspiring conservators from around the country attended a 2 week intensive preventative conservation workshop at Staatsburgh.  This was the second year that the workshop was held at Staatsburgh with sponsorship from The Foundation for the American Institute for Conservation along with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities.  The workshop taught in-depth methods of caring for many different types of collections. Participants gained insight into artifact conservation and the conditions that cause deterioration. After the workshop, several of the participants wrote blog entries about their experience and a specific aspect of the workshop.

NYS Bureau of Historic Sites Furniture Conservator, David Bayne, organized this workshop to occur at Staatsburgh collaborating on its organization with Independent Conservator Cathy MacKenzie.  Several conservators participated in the workshop's instruction including  Kirsten Schoonmaker from the Shelburne MuseumValentine Talland formerly from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and Michelle Smith who is currently spending the summer at the National Library of France.

Part II of the series was written by NYU graduate Natasha Kung.  Natasha was born and raised in New York and graduated from New York University in 2016 with degrees in Art History and Chemistry. She has gained pre-program conservation experience at the Museum of Modern Art, with Central Park Conservancy, and with several private conservators. She is currently interning in the Department of Photograph Conservation at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and in the Conservation Department at the Brooklyn Museum. She expresses interest in specializing in objects, but is also fascinated by photo chemistry and materials science.

AIC Workshop participant and blog author Natasha Kung

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Preventative Conservation Workshop 2017 Part I: Outdoor Marble Sculpture

During June 2017, aspiring conservators from around the country attended a 2 week intensive preventative conservation workshop at Staatsburgh.  This was the second year that the workshop was held at Staatsburgh with sponsorship from The Foundation for the American Institute for Conservation along with funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities.  The workshop taught in-depth methods of caring for many different types of collections. Participants gained insight into artifact conservation and the conditions that cause deterioration. After the workshop, several of the participants wrote blog entries about their experience and a specific aspect of the workshop.

NYS Bureau of Historic Sites Furniture Conservator, David Bayne, organized this workshop to occur at Staatsburgh collaborating on its organization with Independent Conservator Cathy MacKenzie.  Several conservators participated in the workshop's instruction including  Kirsten Schoonmaker from the Shelburne Museum, Valentine Talland formerly from the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, and Michelle Smith currently spending the summer at the National Library of France.

Part I in this series of blogs is by Ruthie Rolfsmeyer.  Ruthie is a conservation technician who has been contracted to work with concrete and wooden sculpture folk art environments in Maine, Georgia, and Wisconsin. She has also done conservation work on indoor murals in Idaho and Minnesota. Her degree is in Fine Art and Graphic Design with a minor in Art History, and she is continuing her education through courses in chemistry and Italian.

Workshop participant and blog author, Ruthie Rolfsmeyer


Tuesday, July 25, 2017

A Titled Affair: Lady Eileen Forbes Weds the Future Marquess of Bute


Castle Forbes, County Longford, Ireland

On April 26, 1932, crowds in Newforbestown, County Longford, Ireland clamored to catch a glimpse of the lovely bride, Lady Eileen Forbes. The event was very exciting for a town with less than 1000 residents that was named after the Forbes family. The Earl of Granard had resided in the region since 1691 and the family’s residence at Castleforbes was central to the town’s identity. Adding to the excitement was the equally elevated status of the groom, John Crichton-Stuart, the Earl of Dumfries who was the eldest son of a Marquess from one of the most prominent families in Scotland. The affair was a celebration for both the family and the village.

Thursday, June 29, 2017

The Relationship between the Mills Family and St. Margaret's Church

When approaching Staatsburgh from the south, it is nearly impossible to miss the beautiful stone church in the center of the village of Staatsburg*.  St. Margaret's Episcopal Church has been an important feature of the village since it was built in 1891 and the parish was an important part of the community even before the current church was built.  Although Ruth and Ogden Mills were not full time residents of the village and permanent fixtures at Sunday services, generations of the family have been involved with the congregation in many ways.

St. Margaret's Episcopal Church, Staatsburg, NY