Dining RoomView Fullscreen
Welcome! You have been invited to dine at the Nightingale-Brown House. Right now, you see the dining room as it was decorated in the mid-20th century but there have been many changes over the years. It would have looked a little different when, in 1880, 19-year-old John Nicholas Brown I began his diary with a record of his mother’s New Year’s Eve party. Throughout the diary, John Nicholas Brown I recorded the guests who joined the Browns for meals in the dining room.
Dinner parties were easier because John Nicholas Brown I’s father, John Carter Brown, had added the alcove at the far end of the room in 1855 when he renovated this Georgian-era house into the Victorian style. The addition closed off the southern door to the house and the Browns began to use the former entryway as a pantry and as a waystation for food on its trip from the kitchen to the dining room.
During its Victorian days,this dining room was a fairly formal space. When a young John Nicholas Brown II took possession of the house, he hired the firm Jackson, Robertson & Adams to renovate in the Colonial-Revival style and took off on a tour of Europe to buy antiques to furnish his new home. When John Nicholas Brown II came back and married Anne Kinsolving Brown, the room became more casual -- a place for both entertaining as well as a family dining room -- although it may not look casual to our eyes.
When would you have wanted to come to dinner?
Emily Taylor, Leadership Alliance program, Southern Oregon University, History, BA, 2018