A Visit To Hildene

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The entrance to Hildene House, the family home of Abraham Lincoln’s eldest son.

I grew up in an old house, which is probably why I love historic homes so much. Whenever I travel, I like to tour manors and estates, which are often lifesize time capsules. So while Jon was off getting off-road lessons at the Land Rover Experience in Manchester, Vermont, I stopped for a visit to Hildene. Hildene is the summer family home of Robert Todd Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s eldest son and only child to survive into adulthood. The name of the estate is derived from the old English words meaning hill and valley with stream. It was completed in 1905 and inhabited by Lincoln’s descendants until 1975. Today, the Georgian Revival house is run by a non-profit that restored and manages the property. What’s amazing is that the furniture is all original, including a massive pipe organ that was restored in the 1980s. Robert Lincoln was the president of Pullman Company, which explains the magnificent and original 1903 Pullman train on the property. The family collection includes Lincoln’s stovepipe hat and even the former president’s death mask (which is so realistic that I was a little frightened).

Aside from the early American furniture, a highlight for me was the stunning wallpapers. Enjoy the following photos, I had a wonderful time visiting and sharing these with you!

The house as seen from the formal gardens.
A folly on the front lawn.
A vignette in the entryway.
The home’s famous grandfather clock.
The gorgeous dining room!
The home’s original silver.
The family sitting room with piano.
The organ that plays throughout the house.
One of the bedrooms with beautiful wallpaper.
A lovely painting.
Wallpaper details.
Views of the grounds from an upstairs bedroom.
The organ on the stairway landing.
Bedroom details.
One of the beautiful cherry trees.
The butler’s pantry.
Cherry blossom flowers.
The library.
A silver candlestick against beautiful wallpaper.
The sewing room.
Views of the area around Manchester, Vermont.
The typewriter.
Abraham Lincoln’s portrait, papers and death mask.
A gorgeous secretary desk.
Magnificent patterns in the bedroom.
Butler pantry views.
The butler’s room.
Library details.
The interior of a historic Pullman train car.
The estate telescope.
Abraham Lincoln’s stovetop hat!
A cozy nook.
A final view of Hildene House.

What do you love most about the house?

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