Why is it so important to preserve and interpret Meadow Brook Hall ... The Great Estate?
“Unless all of us become aware of the importance of our heritage and take action to preserve it, our past won’t have a future.” – Richard Moe, President, National Trust for Historic PreservationJohn Dodge, Matilda Dodge Wilson and Alfred Wilson lived and helped to define the American dream – a dream that the Wilsons ultimately passed along to countless young people through their founding of Oakland University. Their stories, and the lessons that can be learned from them, can best be preserved, examined, interpreted, retold and shared at the source.
And, as suburban sprawl consumes former farms, country estates and historic structures – and the maintenance and preservation costs for the remaining historic resources increase dramatically – Meadow Brook’s role as a tangible, three-dimensional resource to learn about the automotive aristocracy and the development of Southeastern Michigan’s heyday becomes even more critical.
In case you are not that familiar with the property, I encourage you to consider the following facts:
- Meadow Brook Hall is the largest historic American house west of the Appalachian Mountains, and the fourth largest overall.
- The Hall is renowned as one of the finest extant examples of Tudor-Revival architecture in the United States.
- The estate, including farm buildings, is Michigan's newest National Historic Landmark.
- The Hall’s extensive collections (exceeding 75,000 pieces) of art, furniture, ceramics, glass, silver, textiles and costumes are highly valued for being original to the house as well as for their intrinsic value.
- Dodge and Wilson family and Dodge Motor Car Company archival materials, including a large collection of building and detail blueprints, are an invaluable research resource.
- As the educational cornerstone of Oakland University, The Hall serves the campus of 19,000+ students and faculty and an international research community as a robust cultural and historical center.
- By openly sharing the property, The Hall is a vital cultural asset to the community.
I invite you to join us in our educational mission by volunteering, attending one of our special events or becoming a member of our Friends organization or Cornerstone giving society. Your involvement will be both rewarding and much appreciated.