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Victoria Mansion, New England's finest historic house museum of the Victorian Era, strives to conserve, maintain, and restore the Mansion property and collections to the highest standards, and to interpret them in their social, historical, and art-historical context to a broad local, state, and national audience.
Victoria Mansion, a National Historic Landmark, was designed by architect Henry Austin in the fashionable Italian Villa style. This magnificent brownstone house was built as a summer residence for Ruggles Sylvester Morse and his wife Olive between 1858 and 1860. The opulent interiors, the work of Gustave Herter of New York City, survive remarkably intact.
In its time, the Mansion was the most "modern" home in Maine. Thanks to Morse's experience as a proprietor of several hotels in New Orleans, it featured every convenience and luxury money could buy. There was gas lighting, indoor plumbing, wall-to-wall carpeting, central heating, and even a bell system to summon servants.
More than 19,000 people come through the doors of Victoria Mansion each year, yet the Mansion is much more than a tourist attraction. It serves as an educational resource where the public, scholars, and school children can learn about the architecture, decorative arts, and social history of one of the most interesting periods in our nation's history.
- Joanna Caldwell
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