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May 24, 2010

Uncover treasures of historic shipwrecks during Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg program

the treasures that lay within 17th- and 18th-century shipwrecks off the coast of Western Australia during the program, Historic Shipwrecks of Western Australia: Excavation and Conservation, at 5:30 p.m. on Monday, May 31 at the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum, 326 W. Francis St., Williamsburg.

Ian Godfrey, head of the materials conservation department at the Western Australia Museum, discusses why many Dutch, English and American ships sank in those waters and what treasure and exciting information the excavations and subsequent conservation has yielded.

Historic Shipwrecks of Western Australia is being offered in advance of the exhibition, Conservation: Where Art and Science Meet. Opening on June 26 at the Wallace Museum, this exhibition presents a different way of looking at museum objects. Visitors discover what is harmful to objects and what preserves them. Before an object is shown, conservators investigate each piece with a variety of fascinating techniques to understand the object and ensure its preservation for the future. This exhibition is made possible in part by the Friends of Heritage Preservation and by Cindy and Sheldon Stone.

A Colonial Williamsburg admissions ticket, museum pass or Good Neighbor Card provides access to this lecture.

Programs and exhibitions at The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum are supported by the DeWitt Wallace Endowment Fund.

Entrance to Colonial Williamsburg Art Museums is through the Public Hospital of 1773 at 326 W. Francis St. For information, call (757) 220-7724.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg include the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum and the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum. The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum is home to the nation’s premier collection of American folk art, with more than 5,000 folk art objects made during the 18th, 19th and 20th centuries. The DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum exhibits the best in British and American decorative arts from 1670–1830.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg are located at the intersection of Francis and South Henry Streets in Williamsburg, Va., and are entered through the Public Hospital of 1773. Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. For museum program information, telephone (757) 220-7724.

The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational and cultural 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. 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 website at

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121