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March 22, 2001

Exhibition honors the late DeWitt and Lila Acheson Wallace

Colonial Williamsburg will host a small photographic exhibition entitled
"Building a Museum: The Wallace Legacy" at the DeWitt Wallace
Decorative Arts Museum. The display, honoring the late DeWitt and Lila
Acheson Wallace, philanthropists and co-founders of Reader’s Digest, will
open to the public June 30.


"Building a Museum: The Wallace Legacy" will introduce visitors
to Mr. and Mrs. Wallace and the museum at Colonial Williamsburg that bears
their name. The exhibition will show how the museum was envisioned and
constructed by renowned architect Kevin Roche. It also will examine how
the museum adds to its collections and how the Colonial Williamsburg collections
are used. Finally, visitors will enjoy an overview of the many delightful
displays that have come and gone since the Wallace Museum first opened
its doors in 1985.


DeWitt Wallace once wrote, "Everyone agrees that Colonial Williamsburg
is the most significant and fascinating historical restoration in the
country. Any person is a better citizen for having spent three or four
days in this unique spot." He and his wife, Lila, visited Colonial
Williamsburg over a period of 50 years, finding it a source of inspiration
as well as relaxation. During that time, they sent hundreds of Reader’s
Digest employees to enjoy the town and its history.


Understanding the need to preserve Colonial Williamsburg and the values
it embodied, the Wallaces committed their resources to funding the building
of the Public Hospital and the attached decorative arts museum. Mr. Wallace
established the DeWitt Wallace Fund for Colonial Williamsburg with a gift
of Reader’s Digest stock that continues to produce income for Colonial
Williamsburg’s collections, conservation, audiovisual productions, the
Bruton Heights School Education Center and the Wallace Museum’s operating
costs. The Wallace Museum garden bears the name of Lila Acheson Wallace
who was equally committed to Colonial Williamsburg’s educational goals,
delighting especially in the Historic Area gardens and the celebration
of the decorative arts.



Media Contact:
Sophia C. Hart
(757) 220-7272




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