"Blue Room," by Frank Cousins, 1917. Buildings and Grounds Photograph Collection (3008-2-14-1)
Guest room, 2018. NPS Photo / Kate Hanson Plass
The outstanding feature of the room is a set of English and Dutch fireplace tiles depicting biblical scenes, animals, ships, and ruins. Henry Longfellow described many of the tiles in his poem "To a Child," written for his son Charley:
Charley Longfellow's nursery had been one of the rooms his father rented from Mrs. Craigie. When Henry Longfellow became her boarder in 1837, he was told that his rented rooms had been Washington's, although there is no contemporary evidence collaborating this. After their marriage, Henry and Fanny Longfellow continued to use this as their bedroom until 1844. The room then became the nursery for the young Longfellow children, Alice Longfellow's bedroom, and a guest room.
The eclectic mix of furniture includes a Federal-style bed brought from Henry Longfellow's boyhood home in Maine, Japanese artifacts acquired by Charles Longfellow in the 1870s, and the mounted eagle-shaped tiller of Thomas Appleton's yacht Alice. Like the study on the first floor, this room has a bookcase built into a window. The two watercolors on the west wall, Rocks and Surf and A Calm Day, were painted by Henry Longfellow's niece, Mary King Longfellow.
Last updated: February 26, 2018