Exhibition of Coverlets

Americana Series  Coverlets: Treasure from the Loom April 2nd – 30th, 2014 Ayr Mount presents the inaugural installment in our exciting Americana Series, Coverlets: Treasures from the Loom, where over 50 woven coverlets was on view. The production of woven coverlets dates to Colonial times, when they quickly became essential household items. In the 19th century the industry grew and coverlets became increasingly popular, especially in the Northeast. Advancements in manufacturing and weaving techniques allowed for increased production and the creation of more intricately patterned coverlets over time. Two types of coverlets – Figured and Fancy and geometric – were …more

Antique Appraisal Fair

April 17th (4 – 7 PM) What’s in your closet or attic? Ever wonder if that antique is worth more than you expect or a family heirloom is a missing part of an American legacy? Join us on April 17th (4 – 7 PM) for Ayr Mount’s first-ever Antique Appraisal Fair with guest of honor Julia Carpenter, of UNC-TV’s Collecting Carolina. This event, inspired by Antiques Roadshow, will give guests the opportunity to have two antiques appraised by local experts from Leland Little Auctions, Whitehall at the Villa Antiques, and The Persian Carpet. Accepting for appraisal silver, pottery, porcelain, paintings, jewelry, engravings, textiles, furniture, wine, …more

Wunsch Award

CAHPT is honored to be a 2014 co-recipient of the Eric M. Wunsch Award for Excellence in the American Arts from the Wunsch Americana Foundation. We are proud to be acknowledged alongside Linda and George Kaufman, major art collectors of Americana. This honor recognizes dedication and contributions in preserving American Decorative Arts and was hosted by Christie’s, New York City on January 22nd. Please click here for the press release.  

CAHPT 20th Anniversary

It is our pleasure to announce that Classical has turned 20 this year! We cannot believe how far we’ve come since our founding in 1993, all thanks to your generous support and sustained interest in what we do. Because of friends and supporters like you, Classical American Homes has been able to continue our preservation mission. The story began…. Classical American Homes started as a non-profit foundation in December 1993 with the gift of Ayr Mount, built circa 1815, in Hillsborough, NC. Ayr Mount was our first historic house museum. (Photos on this page are from our 20th Anniversary Reception …more

Happy 20th Birthday PARTY to Us!

HAPPY BIRTHDAY PARTY TO US! In honor of our 20th birthday, we hosted a reception at Ayr Mount in Hillsborough, NC, on October 23rd. Nearly 300 friends and supporters came to help us celebrate on this crisp, Fall evening. The house was open for guests to tour while food and drinks were served outside on the terrace. Vistas of undulating fields down to the Eno River created an idyllic setting for the occasion. The evening featured memorable remarks by the Mayor of Hillsborough, Tom Stevens, and Dick Jenrette (see below). Mayor Stevens presented Mr. Jenrette with a  locally-crafted key to the …more

Let’s Play 20/20

Twenty Questions for Twenty Years! 1. What movie influenced Dick Jenrette’s love of classical architecture? 2. True or False. In 1854, Edgewater had a unique octagonal library added to it by A.J. Davis, which later became Gore Vidal’s study. 3. Ayr Mount is located along which important early trading route? a) Carolinian Silk Road b) Old Indian Trading Path c) Tar Heel Tunnel d) Trader Joe’s Produce Aisle 4. What was the first house Dick Jenrette purchased to begin his collection of houses? 5. The architect/builder of Millford Plantation, Nathaniel Potter, was related to which famous Potter who helped save …more

Tours – Spring/Summer 2014

Continued… from our Spring/Summer 2014 Newsletter A little farther south, Millford Plantation started the year off with a fantastic response to first-of-the-month open Saturday tours for individuals, which also occur all Saturdays during the month of April. Millford is the perfect place to spend a beautiful summer day enjoying a tour and perusing the gardens. Visit us on a Public Saturday to meander the grounds and enjoy this one-of-kind home. Upon the start of its spring tour season, Ayr Mount welcomed the Chapel Hill Newcomers Club, Back Creek Young at Heart Club and the Fuqua School of Business at Duke …more

Ceilidh at Ayr 2017

The Cèilidh at Ayr, celebrating the Kirkland family’s Scottish heritage, was held on Saturday, October 21st at Ayr Mount.   The crowd of over 450 people enjoyed a day of music, friendship, crisp autumnal weather, and Scottish stories. Piobadh na Triantan (Gaelic for Piping in the Triangle) opened the festival with their rousing bagpipes filling the autumn air.  John Saxon and Evelyn Judson piped during the mid-day session and explained how the bagpipe works plus a bit about the history of the instrument.      Interspersed with the bagpipes were two Celtic bands.  Hailing from Alabama, Chambless & Muse (comprised of Jil Chambless …more

News from Ayr Mount

In the first half of this year, Ayr Mount has had the pleasure of hosting 103 tours, with a total of 715 visitors thus far – an increase in tours from last year! In June, as part of the Society of American Period Furniture Makers National Conference (SAPFM), Ayr Mount hosted a special tour for 44 members. Twelve pieces of furniture from Ayr Mount’s collection were shown to the group, allowing for close examination of the construction of each piece. This visit was noted by its organizers as the highest attended regional offering outside of the regular SAPFM National Conference, and by all …more

Tradition of Music at Classical American Homes

Music has long played a role in the lives of the occupants of Edgewater, Ayr Mount and Millford. This September it will come alive once again in a series of classical concerts entitled, The Classical Ideal: Music & Architecture in Harmony. In the years when Robert and Susan Gaston Donaldson resided at Edgewater, their temple-like villa on the Hudson, it was filled with sounds of the most exquisite music, performed by Susan and their children. Susan Donaldson’s musical education began at an early age at the insistence of her father, Judge William Gaston, who believed that attaining skill in this …more