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Maymont will host exclusive “Carriages by candlelight” dinner to Benefit the carriage collection Click Here for Official Media Release Information
Maymont, the Gilded Age Estate in Richmond, Virginia, will present an inaugural “Carriages by Candlelight” dinner, a celebration of the Maymont Carriage Collection, on Sunday, June 10, 2018 at 6 p.m. Guests will enjoy hors d’oeuvres and wine among the beautiful antique carriages displayed on the Carriage House Lawn, followed by a sumptuous dinner in the courtyard of the historic Carriage House. Musical entertainment and carriage rides will add to the magic of the evening. Proceeds will benefit Maymont’s Carriage Collection and its carriage driving program.
Maymont was given to the City of Richmond by James and Sallie Dooley, the wealthy couple who lived there from 1893 to 1925, to be used as a museum and park. Today, its original 100 acres are intact and retain the architectural and landscape features in place at the time of Mrs. Dooley’s death. More than 25 original buildings and garden structures, including the Normandy-style Carriage House, are preserved.
Designed by Noland and Baskerville and completed in 1904, the Carriage House is faced with granite that was likely quarried on the property and remains largely unchanged. The first floor included horse stalls, two carriage bays, and a harness room. The second floor included a hayloft and quarters for the coachman. The courtyard provided an area where horses were put to the carriages.
In the Gilded Age, fine carriages became symbols of status, and carriage driving was a pastime of the affluent. James Dooley loved fine horses and, with his wife, enjoyed riding and driving. While none of the Dooley’s carriages survive, Maymont’s collection of twenty-five vehicles reflects what would have been appropriate for an estate inventory. Highlights include an elegant Skeleton Boot Victoria by Brewster and Company, a Park Drag (maker unknown), a Landau by W. Larsons Ikker of Denmark, a Brougham by Henry Hooker, Vermont, and a Roof Seat Break by George W. Osgood of Amesbury, MA.
The Carriage Collection at Maymont was established in 1975 by Elisabeth Scott Bocock, the daughter of Frederick W. Scott, one of Major Dooley’s business associates. Mrs. Bocock was a dynamic force in the arts and historic preservation in Richmond. In addition to her many contributions to the cultural development of the city, she also was well-known in Virginia and beyond for her love of carriage driving and side saddle riding. She founded the Early Virginia Vehicular Museum, for which she collected at least 60 horse-drawn vehicles, many of which became the nucleus of Maymont’s collection. “Carriages by Candlelight” will be a tribute to Mrs. Bocock’s foresight and generosity to establish the Maymont Carriage Collection displayed in the original Carriage House and to create an active driving program at the estate to give people of today a dynamic sense of the past. Many of Maymont’s events include carriage rides, which complete the picture of life in the Gilded Age.
For an invitation or more information about the “Carriages by Candelight” dinner, interested parties should contact Nancy Lowden, Maymont Manager of Historical Programs, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 804-358-7166, ext. 350. The Carriage House is located at Maymont’s historic estate entrance at 1700 Hampton Street in Richmond, Virginia. Guests of the event are encouraged to arrive early to take a tour of the restored Maymont Mansion and explore the magnificent grounds including the historic Italian and Japanese Gardens.
Since 1975, Maymont has been maintained and operated by the nonprofit Maymont Foundation. The Foundation must raise more than $3 million each year through donations to keep the estate open to the public.