The Drawing Room at Montpelier is the only room in the Mansion that retains a significant amount of Madison-era plaster. While only small samples of loose plaster fragments were found in other rooms at Montpelier, over 3/4 of the ca. 1812 plaster in the Drawing Room survived and it is especially significant for what it reveals about the room in Madison’s time. Because a finish coat was not installed on the plaster during the Madison-era, the Restoration Team determined that the room had been wallpapered in ca. 1812. The Restoration Team believed this because in the period applying the final white coat plaster was expensive and, since wallpapering the walls would have hidden the costly finish coat anyway, it was often skipped when a room was intended to be wallpapered.
©The Montpelier Foundation