Monday, April 30, 2012

'Florham' Part 5

 The fifth installment of Johnston Stewart's photographs of 'Florham', the Hamilton McKeon and Florence Adele Vanderbilt Twombly estate designed by McKim, Mead & White between 1894-1897 in Convent Station, New Jersey.  These interiors were taken on August 30th, 1936.  Click HERE and HERE  for more on 'Florham'.  Photos courtesy of Old Grey Dog.







8 comments:

The Down East Dilettante said...

Empty, quiet...

Anonymous said...

Depressing is more like it. Reminds me of a morgue with the cold looking floor.

Does anyone know why there are so few pictures of the interior?

I am surprised no one has ever written a biography of this strange Twombly family.

Also, I believe it is Convent Station and not "Covent".

Lorra

Zach said...

You are absolutely correct...thank you for pointing out my error.

archibuff said...

Well I could defnitely be quite satisfied with such an entrance hall if I had the chance to call this my little country get-away. Very elegant and the row of roman emperors is a nice touch.

The Down East Dilettante said...

I think the Roman Emperors are quite fine indeed---as I remember, they were among the prizes of the Twombly's collection.

Lorra, if you follow the links to the Fairleigh Dickinson archives, posted in Part 4, it will link you to about a dozen more interior views, and interiors of the pool house

The Ancient said...

In the event that anyone is confused by the picture display in the Farleigh Dickinson Archives ...

To see the entire picture -- rather than just the portion shaded in red on the icon to the upper left -- place your cursor on the bottom of the larger B&W picture and drag it downwards.

And if you dislike the rotating picture display on the page Zach linked the other day, just go here:

http://cdm15157.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/search/searchterm/Estate/field/all/mode/all/conn/and/display/200/order/nosort/ad/asc

Old Grey Dog said...

Mrs. Twombly's grandson, Shirley Burden, a professional photographer, took several hundred photos of all three of the Twombly homes. Those pictures, I understand, are in his photographic archives. Perhaps some publisher, such as Acanthus Press, might approach the family with the thought of publishing a book showing the homes in their entirety. Just a thought !
Social arbiter, Frank Crowninshield, himself a frequent guest at Florham was quoted in an interview for a 'New Yorker' Profile . . .
"The rich were repositories of beautiful Genoese velvets and Persian miniatures and Italian paintings and rare books and rugs. The things that make life awfully agreeable and warm, and it is a major tragedy that their houses are being torn down. There was Mrs. Harry Whitney, rich as mud ~ her house will be destroyed. I just sort of regret it bitterly. You go to the Twomblys' in Madison on a Sunday ~ eleven acres of rolling lawn, twenty-five kinds of evergreens. It may be wrong to keep four men to mow the grass, but it does seem a pity that all that has to disappear. It has to do with taste and elegance, and if you don't have those things in the world the results might be quite serious. Take away all of Mrs. Twomblys possessions and you make an awful mistake. Imagine every house a sort of chicken-dinner place, billboards over everything, the radio full of the most blatant and awful stuff. The decor's drab, people dressed in sacks and bags `
who in hell wants to live !"
WEll, Frank Crowninshield passed away in 1947 and, mercifully, for him, Florham survived almost another decade.

The Down East Dilettante said...

Marvelous quotation, thx OGD