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Gary Lawrance Speaks at Mansions of the Gilded Age Symposium

Architect, author and chronicler of Hamptons architecture Gary Lawrance is presenting a special talk on great houses of the Hamptons in a Mansions of the Gilded Age symposium at Lyndhurst Castle in Tarrytown this Sunday, May 22.

Lawrance, who also curated the event, will open the symposium, with his lecture “Houses of the Hamptons 1880-1930.” The lecture will feature illustrations of summer resort homes—including some that no longer exist—in the Hamptons, which was often referred to as the American Riviera at the time. Among the houses he will discuss are Wooldon Manor, the home of Jesse Woolworth Donahue; Black Point, the H. H. Rogers mansion; Bayberry Land; The du Ponts’ Chestertown House; Villa Mille Fiori; Red Maples; and The Orchard, one of architect Stanford White’s last great commissions. The talk will also give a brief history about the founding of the Summer Colony.

Lawrance will be joined by author and historian, Robert B. King; Ulysses Dietz, curator of the Newark Museum; fashion historian, Caroline Rennolds Milbank; architectural historian and decorative arts specialist, Walter G. Ritchie, Jr.; and Leighton H. Coleman III, archivist of the Spedden Family.

Garden facade at Villa Mille Fiori from Gary Lawrance Collection
Garden facade at Villa Mille Fiori, Postcard from Gary Lawrance Collection

The symposium will conclude with a wine and cheese reception held in the newly restored Lyndhurst observation tower, offering breathtaking views of the Manhattan skyline and the Tappan Zee Bridge.

Aside from Lawrence’s contributions to the architecture of Long Island, he is also an avid historian, co-authoring Houses of the Hamptons, 1880-1930 with Anne Surchin and maintains a popular blog,, dedicated to historical architecture. Most recently, Lawrance has taken to social media sites, such as Facebook and Instagram, where he has gained a strong following of fellow historical architecture enthusiasts. Lawrance organized Sunday’s symposium through these accounts.

The Mansions of the Gilded Age symposium will run from 11 a.m.–5 p.m on Sunday, May 22. Additional information can be found Tickets for the symposium and the reception can be purchased at

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