N is for Newport mansions

I doubled back in the Marble House mansion to catch up on items I had passed by quickly while watching The Daughter, which evidently perplexed the staff, as I overheard on their walkie-talkies.

Last week, my wife, one of her brothers, and their respective families were in Newport, Rhode Island, during the school break. Among our activities: visiting the mansions that were built primarily between the end of the US Civil War in 1865 and the beginning of the first World War in 1914. This was dubbed “The Gilded Age” by Mark Twain in 1873, and this was NOT meant as a compliment. By this, he was saying that the period was glittering on the surface but corrupt underneath. But those so dubbed took the term as positive, noting the rapid economic and population growth.

While each of the four mansions warrants its own narrative, there were some characteristics in common. Each was built with money from captains of industry, and most were considered summer homes or even cottages. They were inspired largely by the palaces of Europe, and often used Greek gods in the motif.

The families living there Continue reading “N is for Newport mansions”