ASHEVILLE NC – “The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad” grand opening set for April 7, 2012. When a new exhibition of rarely displayed treasures collected by the Vanderbilt family opens this spring, visitors to Biltmore will have the opportunity to learn more about the intriguing family who lived in Biltmore House, America’s Largest Home, at the turn of the 20th century.
Through archival letters, documents, personal items and exotic treasures, “The Vanderbilts at Home and Abroad” explores the personalities of George and Edith Vanderbilt, and their only child, Cornelia. The exhibition opens April 7, 2012, in Antler Hill Village at Biltmore.
Starting with the Vanderbilt family tree, dating back to industrialist Commodore Cornelius Vanderbilt, George Vanderbilt’s grandfather, visitors will take in details and descriptions of the Vanderbilt courtship and wedding; Cornelia’s birth; grand parties at Biltmore House; and travels through Europe and the Far East. Milestones are portrayed through archival photos, many of the pictures taken by Edith Vanderbilt, an avid student of photography. The fascinating story of the fateful decision that saved the Vanderbilts from perishing on Titanic is also told in this exhibition.
Some of the family’s cherished possessions to be displayed include:
• An extraordinary collection of Samurai armor and weapons and an intricate Cartier vanity and lipstick case.
• A 12-sided Tiffany & Co. coffee pot given to George and Edith Vanderbilt by President Theodore Roosevelt’s sister, Anna Roosevelt Cowles, for their 1898 wedding.
• The Holland House books, a set of gilded volumes collected originally at England’s Holland House, a gathering place for more than 200 years of some of Britain’s most famous thinkers, leaders and philosophers. The books contain letters, prints, etchings and drawings spanning British history from the mid-1500s through the late 19th century, including correspondence from Queen Elizabeth I, Napoleon, Lafayette and Lord Byron.
Entry into the exhibition is included in estate admission. For more information, please visit www.biltmore.com.
Located in Asheville, North Carolina, Biltmore was the vision of George W. Vanderbilt. Designed by Richard Morris Hunt, America’s largest home is a 250-room French Renaissance chateau, exhibiting the Vanderbilt family’s original collection of furnishings, art and antiques. Biltmore estate encompasses more than 8,000 acres including renowned gardens designed by Frederick Law Olmsted, the father of American landscape architecture. Today, Biltmore has grown to include Antler Hill Village, which features the award-winning Winery and Antler Hill Farm; the four-star Inn on Biltmore Estate; Equestrian Center; numerous restaurants; event and meeting venues; Biltmore For Your Home, the company’s licensed products division; and Biltmore Inspirations, Biltmore’s home party business. To learn more about Biltmore, go to www.biltmore.com or call 877-BILTMORE.