Shelter Series: “A superiour manner to what has been customary”: Architecture and Ambition at Ayr Mount with Dr. Jeffrey E. Klee

Tuesday September 28
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Please join us for a presentation by Dr. Jeffrey E. Klee on September 28th at 4:00pm

Ayr Mount cuts a grand figure in Hillsborough, just as William Kirkland intended when he built it in 1815. With its three-part massing, handsome Flemish-bond brick walls, and spacious interior, it still impresses visitors two centuries later. A closer look, however, reveals that the story of its creation is complex, marked by disagreements over pricing and changes made in the middle of construction, as its builders worked out how to build a stylish new house on an unusual plan. William Kirkland joined many other wealthy Americans who wanted novel, impressive dwellings in the opening decades of the nineteenth century but found the path to architectural distinction to be difficult and expensive.

Dr. Jeffrey E. Klee is the Vice-President and Senior Director of Architecture for the Classical American Homes Preservation Trust. For the previous 16 years, he was an architectural historian for the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, where he conducted field-based research throughout the Chesapeake region to support the preservation and reconstruction of buildings in Williamsburg’s Historic Area. His larger scholarly work focuses on American domestic architecture from the colonial period to the Civil War. His most recent articles include an essay on the philosophy of architectural history in the journal Buildings and Landscapes and a popular piece on Robert Carter III’s reading closet for his house in Williamsburg.

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