City of Riverside California Metropolitan Museum

Parlor of Heritage House

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    This room retains more of its original decorations and furnishings than any other in the house. The paint and gilt around the coved ceiling are original, as is the chandelier. The upholstered set of furniture has had the fabric replaced (by the second owners, the MacDavids, when they purchased the house in 1936), but it was similar to the brocade selected by the original owner, Mrs. Bettner. The center table was also Mrs. Bettner's.

    The general style of the room is Neoclassical and demonstrates the influence of the Scottish Adam brothers who were architects in England in the 1780s. Their work was marked by lightness and delicacy of form and color, great use of classical columns, and low relief decorative moldings. (Take a close look at the fireplace for the use of classical columns and of low-relief decoration in tile.) Very pale colors were beginning to be used again in the 1890s, but were considered a little cold by Victorians who were accustomed to dark, rich, warm colors of the sort found elsewhere in the house.

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