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September 23, 2008

Illustrated lecture and book signing at CW's DeWitt Wallace Decortive Arts Museum features soon-to-be-released book, "Flowers and Herbs of Early America"

Colonial Williamsburg curator of plants Lawrence Griffith will present an illustrated lecture Wednesday, Oct. 22 at 5 p.m. at the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum. Griffith’s new book is “Flowers and Herbs of Early America.”

A leading historic plant expert, Griffith’s book and lecture draw on years of archival research and field trials in Colonial Williamsburg’s gardens. He will discuss the great variety of flowers and herbs grown in America’s colonial and early Federal gardens.

Illustrated with elegant period engravings and striking contemporary photographs by Barbara Temple Lombardi, the book and the lecture will be a dazzling visual treat for armchair gardeners and admirers of Colonial Williamsburg’s famous gardens. Lombardi will be present at the book signing that will follow in the Museum Store.

“The flowers and herbs found in Colonial Williamsburg’s gardens have always been a subject of interest and affection on the part of our guests,” said Gordon Chappell, the Foundation’s director of landscape and facilities services. “Lawrence Griffith and Barbara Lombardi have produced a distinctive work that will appeal to all who love gardens.”

“Flowers and Herbs of Early America” is an invaluable companion for today’s gardeners, who will appreciate the advice of a master gardener on how to plan, choose appropriate species and maintain a beautiful period garden.

Gifts from Janet and Fred Brubaker of Somerset, Pa., Teresa and Ken Wood of Chester Springs, Pa., and the Mars Foundation of McLean, Va., have made possible this exquisitely photographed and meticulously researched book of Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area flowers and herbs.

A Colonial Williamsburg admissions ticket, Good Neighbor Card or museums ticket provides access to enjoy the lecture.

Entrance to the museum is through the Public Hospital of 1773 at 326 W. Francis Street. Operating hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. For information and reservations call (757) 220-7724.

“Flowers and Herbs of Early America” can be purchased at the Museum Store, by calling 1-800-446-9240 or visiting us on the Internet at The book is published by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in association with Yale University Press, which will distribute books outside Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area. The suggested retail price for the book is $50.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture — stories of our journey to become Americans — while historic trades people research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution for its guests, it also invites them to interact with history. “Revolutionary City®” — a daily dramatic live street theater presentation — is a 2008 Rand McNally Best-of-the-Road™ Editor’s Pick. Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s Web site

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121