The Van Cortlandt House Museum is a private, non-profit institution founded in 1896 by the National Society of Colonial Dames in the State of New York, a licensee of the City of New York. Van Cortlandt House was built in 1748 for Frederick Van Cortlandt and was the focal point of an expansive and prosperous wheat plantation. The interpretive period of the Museum House is from 1748 - 1823 when Frederick and his two eldest sons, James and Augustus, owned the property. The Museum collection contains Van Cortlandt family materials and furnishings appropriate to this interpretive period.
The Van Cortlandt House Museum's mission is to be a vital member of The Bronx Cultural community and the larger region by preserving, researching and interpreting the Van Cortlandt House, its grounds, and historical collection for a wide audience for the purpose of growing meaningful connections between the past and the present. The Museum’s research and interpretation focuses on the Van Cortlandt family; the social history of those who lived and worked on the property; the study of decorative arts; and the impact of the American Colonial Revival on the development of the Van Cortlandt House as a public museum.
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