Michael Henry Adams of New York City and Bostonite Peggy Hammond journeyed to Newport last week to speak out against the location of the Preservation Society’s Welcome Center.
“The Breakers is an important national historic landmark and preservation experts have repeatedly raised their voices in opposition to the terrible visitor center plan,” said Adams. “This is not just a Newport issue. Preservationists from across the country are opposed to placing a new building on the nation’s most well known symbol of the Gilded Age. The public should be able to enjoy The Breakers as it was designed and built by Cornelius Vanderbilt II, Richard Morris Hunt and the Bowditch Brothers in the 1890’s.”
Mr. Adams is a preservation historian and activist. Ms. Hammond is also a preservationist and is a member of the Vanderbilt family through marriage. The pair demonstrated outside of Rosecliff, where the Society’s annual meeting was held last Thursday. Ms. Hammond noted that the Society still has time to change its mind and place the visitor center across the street in the parking lot, rather than destroying the historic landscape.
“The present option, if carried out, is vandalism,” concluded Ms. Hammond.