NRF promotes and invests in the architectural heritage of the Newport community, the traditional building trades, and Doris Duke’s fine and decorative arts collections, for the enjoyment, education and inspiration of all.
As a leader in the preservation of early American architecture, NRF supports research and education in areas directly related to its collections and issues of critical concern to the field of historic preservation.
Visit Doris Duke’s art-filled mansion and enjoy panoramic ocean views from the extensive grounds. Open late March to November.
The Vernon House is a site for expansive story-telling, contemporary dialogue, and preservation trades skill-building.
Newport Restoration Foundation holds one of the largest collections of period architecture owned by a single organization anywhere in the United States.
Celebrate excellence in historic preservation efforts within the City of Newport, Rhode Island.
Live amidst history by renting one of our many historic properties.
The William Vernon House (circa 1708 & 1760) is one of the most historically significant buildings in Newport, Rhode Island.
The house is connected to many integral stories within Newport’s history. The house:
More about the Vernon House:
Located on Clarke Street, the home played a critical role during the American Revolution. Beginning in July 1780, the Comte de Rochambeau, Commander-in-Chief of the French forces, used the home as his headquarters. Both George Washington and the Marquis de Lafayette visited Rochambeau at the house during his time in Newport. Perhaps the most notable feature of the home was discovered in 1937, when water infiltration required the removal of the paneling in the northwest parlor. Underneath, workers found a series of sixteen remarkable chinoiserie panels.
NRF received the William Vernon House from a donor in 2009, however, a member of the donor’s family occupied it for nine years. NRF’s full stewardship of the home began in 2018. Having now been entrusted with preserving this amazing resource, NRF wants to be certain that each step it takes in the preservation process is thoughtful. NRF worked with Spencer, Sullivan & Vogt, an Architecture and Preservation firm in Charlestown, Mass., to complete a grant-funded Historic Structure Report A Historic Structure Report studies a property from every perspective to fully understand the history of the resource, its current condition, and the work needed to ensure its future preservation. This was the first comprehensive report of this kind performed on this home.
NRF recognized that the Historic Structure Report provided an ideal engagement and education opportunity by both literally and figuratively opening the doors of the William Vernon House to the public. NRF is bringing you along for the journey through a video series entitled Behind the Walls: Uncovering the History of Vernon House.
To support NRF in our efforts to preserve the William Vernon House, as well as our other historic properties, please consider making a gift today.
Alletta Morris McBean Charitable Trust
EJMP Fund for Philanthropy
Herman H. Rose Civic Cultural and Media Access Fund at the Rhode Island Foundation
Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation of the National Trust for Historic Preservation
van Beuren Charitable Foundation
Behind the Walls: Uncovering the History of Vernon House