I met Curt DiCamillo when he was at the Boston Museum of Fine Arts and working in his spare time on his wonderful DiCamillo Companion to British & Irish Country Houses. Since then Curt, who is an architectural historian and a recognized authority on the British Country house, spent eight years as Executive Director of The National Trust for Scotland Foundation USA. Now he works on his own and the database continues to be a wonderful and growing resource.
According to the web site, “the Database is updated daily, with information coming from professional journals, my 2,300-volume library on country houses and allied subjects, and from contributors around the world who kindly provide information and photographs. The Database currently contains records for more than 7,200 houses.”
I suggest poking around the site. It has a ton of information. A sample entry for Wentworth Woodhouse in Yorkshire includes images, detail on its architects, its status, references, access information, current ownership, its seat, a short but packed history of the house and park, any movies or television for which it was used as a location, and a bibliography. Pretty much anything you might need to know.
If, however, you’d like more and firsthand information, Curt also leads tours to various locations. I’ve never been on one (although I’d love to) but I’ve heard some of Curt’s presentations and can testify that you’d get a lot of good, solid background through one of these adventures.
Do look around the site, it includes some interesting extras. It’s a good place to get lost for a couple of hours. Are there any Internet treasures on your bookmarks that you’d like to share?