Friday, April 1, 2011

Site Re-Interpretation Results in a NEW Guided Tour at Sotterley Plantation

Sotterley Plantation now has a NEW Guided Tour called “Discovering Sotterley” of the 1703 Plantation House, which will be ready for public viewing on Sunday, May 1st, the first day of the 2011 tour season.

Photo courtesy of Sara Fisher
 A team of people came together beginning in the summer of 2010 to collaborate on the creation of a new guided tour for Sotterley Plantation. The goal was to not only gain a consistent and strong tour that would better recount Sotterley’s 300 year history, but to ensure that the stories of all who lived and worked here, including those enslaved, were remembered and told. The end result produced a tour which offers far more than Sotterley’s original goal, however, and the new tour will stand out in its approach and the experience it offers to visitors.
The new guided tour will still examine the complex and rich three century history of Sotterley Plantation, but will now also look at the site and its people through the lens of the Colonial Revival movement. At the turn of the 20th century when there was a resurgence of patriotism in our nation, the site was purchased and painstakingly restored by Herbert and Louisa Satterlee. Their restoration efforts focused on portraying the ideals of our colonial past, yet in doing so both highlighted and masked different aspects of Sotterley’s history. The new tour will not only offer new glimpses and perspectives into this National Historic Landmark’s past, but will also showcase collections pieces not previously displayed, which help to tell Sotterley’s stories.

This tour was made possible when Sotterley was awarded an Institute of Museum and Library Services grant last summer due to the efforts of Board of Trustees member Merideth Taylor. The new tour was written by Ken Cohen, Professor of History at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, and this summer Professor Cohen will also help create a Plantation Tour of the grounds which will then be made into an audio tour for visitors. Finally, the grant will produce an audio version of the guided tour, a 10-minute video about Sotterley Plantation, and help place streaming videos on the website.

Sotterley Plantation's tour hours and prices are below:
1703 Plantation House Guided Tour: May 1 - October 31. Check in at the Visitor Center.

Prices: $10 for adults, $8 for seniors, $5 ages 6-12, 5 and under free.

Tuesday - Saturday: Tours at 10:30 & 11:30 am, 1, 2 and 3 pm. Sunday: Tours at Noon, 1, 2 and 3 pm.

For more information, call 301-373-2280 or visit
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