Pieces of History: Reconstructing the Past of Bassett Hall 1650-2013

ECU Author/Contributor (non-ECU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Melissa Jones (Creator)
East Carolina University (ECU )
Web Site: http://www.ecu.edu/lib/
John Tilley

Abstract: This thesis will examine the history of one of the historic homes in Colonial Williamsburg Bassett Hall. It was home to Mr. and Mrs. John D. Rockefeller Jr. while they funded the reconstruction of Williamsburg. The purpose of this thesis is to analyze the history of the house prior to the Rockefellers' involvement to illustrate a common dilemma faced by public historians and museum professionals: selecting which pieces of history to display to the public in the museum. Every artifact or in this case a house carries several different stories of its history. In the case of Bassett Hall the museum planners chose to display the Rockefellers' history of the house and neglect the earlier residents and their stories.  The thesis will also analyze the current museum at Bassett Hall and its failure to deliver the history of the house's earlier residents. The museum exhibits the Rockefellers' role in Williamsburg and the creation of Colonial Williamsburg. Though that story deserves to be delivered because Rockefeller is largely responsible for the success of Colonial Williamsburg there should be more information about the other residents of the house. Some of the house's occupants have sparse information in the historical record while other occupants appear more regularly. I will attempt to construct a thorough history of the house using the available records that will aid in delivering the history of the colonial city. 

Additional Information

Date: 2013
History, Colonial, History, Museum, Virginia, Williamsburg

Email this document to

This item references:

TitleLocation & LinkType of Relationship
Pieces of History: Reconstructing the Past of Bassett Hall 1650-2013http://hdl.handle.net/10342/1817The described resource references, cites, or otherwise points to the related resource.