This coming year will mark the 60th year since I first set foot on Wall Street, a place that today, more than ever, seems enamored with the search for “disruptive” new technologies. In our day, Donaldson, Lufkin & Jenrette, a firm I founded with two Harvard Business School classmates that went on to become the first publicly-owned New York Stock Exchange member firm, was certainly disruptive. But I never really liked the word disruptive.
What has all this got to do with historic preservation and Classical American Homes? Some things need to be disrupted and changed, but equal zeal is often required to save and rescue some of the beautiful things in our lives — like great art, music, and architecture. It occurred to me that this stage of my life is more about preservation and saving some of these beautiful things that are endangered.
This focus on beautiful things from the past need not preclude an appreciation of new art or architecture or music. It’s all part of a continuum of our history. Right now most of the big money (private and public) seems to be flowing into modern art and design — funds for historic preservation are hard to come by. And that’s why I appeal to all of you for help.
At Classical American Homes we have assembled a great team of preservationists, led by Margize Howell and Peter Kenny. We are focused on classical architecture, art, furnishings, and landscapes of America’s critical first 50 years (1800-1850). We have six wonderful properties, most of which are approaching or older than 200 years in age. Many of you have visited one or more of these properties — a few friends have visited them all, and I encourage more of you to join this circle (it’s not exclusive!). Please visit us and thank you in advance for your financial support.
Founder & Chairman