How difficult is it to move an entire room from a house into a museum?
Very difficult! It's done by a whole team of curators, conservators, and technicians. Rooms are disassembled, pieces are labeled and numbered, and everything is very carefully packed for the move.
Then, once the room arrives, it has to be re-assembled, and decisions are made about things like new wallpapers or upholstery, of the old ones are too worn to be displayed. Oh, and lighting has to be installed, and labels need to be researched and written. It's a really laborious and time-consuming process, but fascinating and well-worth the effort!
Yup, definitely worth the effort!
Yes indeed! And we're lucky to have so many good historic interiors here.
Why are some of the period rooms almost in the dark? Even ones near museum windows, where the shades are closed. Are these preservation measures?
Yes, you've guessed that correctly; this is largely to preserve textiles on view. Also, and this may not have been the curator's intention, I see the dark rooms as accurately conveying what interior life was like for most of history.
Thank you for the response. I've been visiting these rooms for over 20 years so I noted the change in presentation, usually more ambient daylight, so that's why I inquired. Thanks for the opportunity to ask a question.
Tell me more.
This parlor was from the main floor in the house of Joseph Russell, one of Providence, Rhode Island's wealthiest citizens in the 1770s. The parlor was a room used for entertaining guests. Tea would have been served in this space, as represented by the tilt-top tea table. The clock is in the Neoclassical style, with a typical motif of the little classical vases at the top. This style implied that the owner of the house was well-educated and had read famous literature from ancient Greece and Rome.