Virtual Tours Highlight Arts and Crafts Conference

by Bruce Johnson


Registered conference participants have already begun sampling our 28-day schedule of seminars, small group discussions, book clubs, and videos, and are soon to discover that they can also tour a number of historic sites and museums from the comfort of their homes. These video tours will give participants the opportunity to see important historic sites, some of which are currently closed due to Covid restrictions, that you might not otherwise experience.

NOW PLAYING – Museum of the American Arts and Crafts Movement – This first sneak peek into the soon to be opened museum in St. Petersburg will get you thinking about a trip to Florida in the near future. Not only does the museum have the finest collection of Arts and Crafts pieces, the building itself is stunning.


Roycroft Campus


The Roycroft Campus – Located in the village of East Aurora, fifteen miles southeast of Buffalo, the idyllic Roycroft Campus includes nine of the original fourteen buildings Elbert Hubbard began building in 1895 for his band of coppersmiths, woodworkers, bookbinders, leatherworkers, and blacksmiths.

Rose Valley – Architect William Price adopted and adapted this small village outside Philadelphia as a model Arts and Crafts community including studios and workshops. Historian Ryan Berley leads this tour from a 1925 Model T as he drives us around the idyllic, tree-shrowded village.

A Stroll Around the Grounds of Craftsman Farms – Gustav Stickley’s landmark Arts and Crafts home and museum isn’t the only thing to see at Craftsman Farms, which was an actual working farm for many years. Executive Director Vonda Givens will be leading three tours this month, including one of the new Education Building.



The historic Grove Park Inn.


Grove Park Inn – Conference director Bruce Johnson, who has explored every square foot, from the ghostly basement to the top of the tile roof of this 1913 Arts and Crafts resort hotel, has assembled a video tour of his favorite spots around the hotel, including rarely seen historic photos taken during the Arts and Crafts era.


The Homespun Museum, formerly Biltmore Industries, on the grounds of the Grove Park Inn.


Biltmore Industries – Founded in Asheville, NC, in 1905 as a manual arts school and cottage industry, the woodworkers soon attracted a following for their hand-carved bowls, trays, picture frames, and desk sets that continues today. In 1917 they moved next to the Grove Park Inn into five Arts and Crafts buildings which have since been restored as a café, gallery, museum, and workshops.



Boettcher Mansion – In 1917 wealthy businessman Charles Boettcher built an Arts and Crafts mansion on Lookout Mountain outside Denver as a summer home made of native stone and timber from the site. It has recently been restored and furnished with Arts and Crafts furniture and lighting with the assistance of the Colorado Arts and Crafts Society, and is managed by the county’s parks department.



Riordan Mansion – In 1904 brothers Tim and Michael Riordan, logging entrepreneurs, built an unusual, sprawling Arts and Crafts duplex log home not far from Flagstaff, AZ. The families lived at either end with a common living room in the center, all furnished and now restored in the Arts and Crafts style by the state’s parks department.


Each of these virtual tours will be released as the month progresses to participant passholders and will remain available for viewing until mid-March. To see the conference schedule and to register, please go to: