View our FAQs, map & parking, guidelines, and more.
Tours, Groups, Exclusive Experiences
Explore our various tour types to find what’s best for you and your group.
History of Newport and the Mansions
Founded in 1639, Newport was an important port city, a center of the slave trade, a fashionable resort and the summer home of the Gilded Age rich.
What was the Gilded Age?
The Gilded Age was a period of unprecedented change in America. Fortunes were spent on luxuries such as the lavish "summer cottages" of Newport.
Deep Dive into the Show
Learn about the people, places and events depicted in Julian Fellowes' popular historical drama series.
Current members can see a full list of benefits and any information regarding Members Events.
Become a Member
We invite you to become a member of the Preservation Society today. In addition to joining an active community of preservation supporters and advocates, members are offered unlimited access to all open houses.
Our mission is to protect, preserve, and present the best of Newport County's architectural heritage. Learn more about us and our work.
Wind Farm Federal Appeal: FAQs
The Preservation Society of Newport County is appealing federal agency approval of two massive wind farms off the Rhode Island coast.
Personal Photography on the Grounds
Rent our museums for commercial photography & videography, TV production, and wedding photography.
Commercial Filming or Photography
Museum Rentals & Weddings
Host your wedding, rehearsal dinner, corporate event, or other celebration at our historic museums.
In the summer of 2015, a rare, 15th century Sienese gold ground cassone (chest) original to the Vanderbilt collection at Marble House was returned to the Gothic Room after a lengthy restoration that combined the scholarly curiosity and technical expertise of now-retired Preservation Society Chief Conservator Jeff Moore.
Purchased from an antiques dealer by the Preservation Society in the spring of 2014, the cassone was in poor condition, and has endured a series of repairs–some more expert than others–over its several centuries of existence.
The cassone is significant to the Preservation Society because of its connection to Marble House. One of a series believed to have been created in Siena around 1475, it eventually resided in the Paris apartment of collector-dealer Emile Gavet, where it was seen by and sold to Mr. and Mrs. William K. Vanderbilt in 1889, along with some 300 other pieces of Medieval and Renaissance art. The collection was displayed in the Gothic Room of Marble House until 1926, when most of it was sold by Mrs. Vanderbilt. Most of the major pieces of the collection have ended up in major American museums; the rare offering of such a significant piece of the collection on the private market was an important opportunity for the Preservation Society to recover an object original to one of its houses.
Moore spent the ensuing months researching and examining the piece, and beginning the careful repair of surface abrasions, chips and losses. After undertaking wood identification and microscopic finish analysis, and following discussions with other conservators and staff about this complex piece, the decision was made to accept the cassone’s layered surface history. The most severe and disruptive losses to the geometric pastiglia were, however, restored. Restored surfaces and other small losses were filled, colored, gilded, and toned to blend with the surrounding area. Further, some historic evidence was preserved by protecting wood surfaces with a paper barrier before the filling process.
The cassone is now displayed in the Gothic Room of Marble House, adding to the accuracy of the presentation of the house to the public, and advancing the Preservation Society’s mission to protect, preserve and present important aspects of Newport’s architectural and artistic heritage.
Parking is free onsite at all properties except for Hunter House and The Breakers Stable & Carriage House, where street parking is available.
Answers to some of our most frequently asked questions.
Explore the 11 properties under the stewardship of the Preservation Society and open as historic house museums.
Partners in Preservation