Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Colonial Revival at the Crossroads

October 31, 2014 @ 12:00 pm - November 1, 2014 @ 3:30 pm

Join Stratford Hall for a cultural landscape symposium which will emphasize issues of Colonial Revival landscape evaluation, interpretation and management. Colonial Revival landscapes broadly reflect the ideas, ideals and progressive movements of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

The symposium will feature Stratford Hall’s three-year study, in partnership with the University of Georgia-College of Environment and Design, of its Great House landscape and gardens, along with other regional Colonial Revival sites.

A symposium brochure and printable size symposium application form are available.


Download Your Registration Form Here

A Brief Overview of Stratford Hall’s History

Dating to the late 1730s, the landscape of Stratford Hall, with its classic Georgian Great House, reflects a remarkable example of colonial Virginia architecture and historic plantation activity. The 1900-acre property along the Potomac River encompasses a historic mill site, geologic cliff formations that are seen in only four other places on earth, numerous archeological sites and several examples of Colonial Revival garden design.

Stratford Hall’s Colonial Revival legacy dates to 1929, beginning with the reconstruction of the landscape surrounding Thomas Lee’s Great House—an endeavor that spanned several decades, and employed such prominent designers as Arthur Shurcliff, Morley Jeffers Williams, Alden Hopkins, and the firm of Innocenti & Webel in addition to The Garden Club of Virginia. Many aspects of the Colonial Revival cultural landscape of Stratford Hall survive today in its formal gardens and reconstructed buildings and structures.

Recently, Colonial Revival landscapes have received much attention, praise, and criticism from the cultural landscape community. Colonial Revival at the Crossroads will explore aspects of this reassessment, including questions about how to identify, evaluate, interpret, and manage Colonial Revival landscapes.


Premise of the Symposium

Between the late 1800s and the 1930s, the Colonial Revival was the premier American garden style. Interest in this topic was particularly influential at historic sites that preserved and celebrated Colonial-era history such as Williamsburg, Carter’s Grove, and Stratford Hall. Reflecting the merger of the burgeoning landscape architecture and historic preservation professions of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, these designed landscapes embodied the ideas and ideals of progressive movements during the era. While not always his¬torically accurate, Colonial Revival landscapes nonetheless have earned their own historical importance through their association with important landscape designers and their reflection of an important period in the history of American culture.

Stratford Hall’s social history is equally striking: it was the site of a large 18th-century tobacco plantation, the home of two signers of the Declaration of Independence (Richard Henry Lee and Francis Lightfoot Lee), and the birthplace of Robert E. Lee. Since 1929, the Robert E. Lee Memorial Asso­ciation (RELMA) has cared for Stratford Hall as a public historic site. Upon acquiring the property, RELMA hired nationally-prominent historians, ar­chitects and landscape architects to undertake research with the intent to return the plantation to its former glory.

Recent research—much of it conducted collaboratively by RELMA profes­sional staff, faculty and students within the University of Georgia’s College of Environment and Design (UGA–CED), the Stratford Hall Historic Landscape Advisory Panel, and other partners—has further revealed how the ethos and spirit of the Colonial Revival period shaped the cultural landscape at Stratford Hall. These insights have also generated a number of difficult ques­tions, however. Which aspects of the landscape’s authentic Colonial Revival history—if any—should be valued, interpreted, conserved and preserved? How important is the site’s Colonial Revival history relative to earlier Lee family periods? Similar questions undoubtedly pertain to numerous histor­ic sites across the U.S., and they are among the complicated issues that will be explored in Colonial Revival at the Crossroads.



  • Friday only – $125 per person
  • Saturday only – $135 per person
  • Friday & Saturday – $225 per person
  • Student Rate – $85 per person
  • Please email your completed registration form to Jon Bachman, Public Events Manager at jbachman@stratfordhall.org
  • For questions, please contact Jon Bachman at 804.493.1972 or jbachman@stratfordhall.org

Schedule of Events

Friday, October 31, 2014

  • 12:00 – 1:00pm Registration at Straford Hall’s Jessie Ball du Pont Memorial Library
  • 1:00 – 2:00pm Welcome and Overview of the Symposium

Session 1: Colonial Revival 101

  • 1:20 – 2:15pm Introduction to Colonial Revival – William D. Rieley
  • 2:15 – 2:30pm Break

Session 2: Key Figures of the Colonial Revival

  • 2:30 -3:15pm Arthur Shurcliff, Boston Landscape Architect – Elizabeth Hope Cushing
  • 3:15 – 4:00pm The firm of Innocenti & Webel, and Landscape Architect Alden Hopkins – M. Kent Brinkley
  • 4:00 – 4:15pm Break
  • 4:15 – 5:00pm Moreley Jeffers Williams, Landscape Archaeology – Dennis Pogue
  • 5:00 – 5:20pm Moderated Closing
  • 6:00 – 7:00pm Reception
  • 7:00 – 8:00pm Dinner in Stratford Hall’s Plantation Dining Room

Saturday, November 1, 2014

  • 8:00 – 9:00am Registration at Straford Hall’s Jessie Ball du Point Memorial Library
  • 9:00 – 9:10am Welcome and Overview of the Symposium

Session 3: Colonial Revival and Stratford Hall

  • 9:10 – 10:00am The Role of Stratford Hall and the Robert E. Lee Memorial Association in the 20th-century Preservation Movement – Kenneth M. McFarland
  • 10:00 – 11:00am Stratford Hall Cultural Landscape and Archeological Research Finding – Cari Goetcheus, Eric MacDonald, Doug Sanford
  • 11:15 – 12:30pm Stratford Hall Colonial Revival Landscape Tour
  • 12:30 – 1:00pm Box Lunch

Session 4: Colonial Revival Landscape Preservation Maintenance Issues

  • 1:00 – 2:30pm Maintaining Colonial Revival Landscapes
  • 2:30 – 3:30pm Roundtable Discussion and Concluding Remarks

Event Speakers

  • M. Kent Brinkely, FASLA
  • Elizabeth Hope Cushing, Ph.D
  • Cari Goetcheus
  • Eric MacDonald
  • Kenneth M. McFarland
  • Dennis Pogue
  • William D. Rieley
  • Douglas W. Sanford, Ph.D
  • Lucy Lawliss, ASLA
  • Beate Ankjar-Jensen


October 31, 2014 @ 12:00 pm
November 1, 2014 @ 3:30 pm
Event Category:

Follow Along with Stratford on Instagram

To see the Instagram feed you need to add your own API Token to the Instagram Options page of our plugin.