In preparation for the opening of the season in May, Wright Ferry’s mansion has appointed new CEO James Archer Abbott.
Abbott comes to the historic site of Columbia from the Lewis Historical Society in Lewis, Delaware.
He was curator or director of the Baltimore Museums; Washington, DC; and the Hudson Valley in New York, according to a press release. Other past Abbott positions include director and curator of the Johns Hopkins Evergreen University Museum and Library, curator of the Woodrow Wilson House and curator of decorative arts for the Baltimore Museum of Art.
Abbott has written several books, including his latest, 2021, “Designing Camelot: Rebuilding the Kennedy White House and His Legacy,” co-authored with Elaine Rice Bachmann.
In a press release, the abbot says the mansion “celebrates the colonial design and craftsmanship of the 18th century, as well as an exceptional collection of fine and decorative arts. Immediate grounds provide an important context for the development of American trade and private enterprise.
“Rarely is there an opportunity to celebrate and engage in history at the level provided by Wright Ferry’s mansion,” says Abbott, adding that he hopes to create a visitor center and training gallery in the building adjacent to the mansion.
The colonial mansion was built in 1738 for the original owner Susanna Wright, a Quaker poet, businesswoman and scholar. It is unique in Pennsylvania for its early 18th-century architecture, furniture, and arts and crafts.
The mansion is located at 38 S. Second St., Colombia, maintained by the Louise Steinman von Hess Foundation.