South Facade of the Hillwood Museum. (Hillwood Museum/COURTESY HILLWOOD MUSEUM)

By the time of her death in1973 she had become one the finest art collectors in the world. She amassed what is said to be the most comprehensive collection of Russian Imperial art outside of Russia and a very noteworthy 18th-century French decorative art collection. In1977 her estate opened to the public and has maintained a meaningful place in the cultural landscape of Washington, D.C.

Long before same sex couples were able to legally enter into the institution of marriage in D.C., Hillwood was an institution that had already fully committed to the gay community. Hillwood has increased their outreach to the local gay community and created an GLBT advisory board and held events to highlight its open and welcoming atmosphere.

Saturday, September 17 from 10am – 6pm Hillwood will host its 10th Annual Gay Day. Guests will be able to tour the home, gardens and participate in a host of other activities. The day will end with the traditional social on the lunar lawn – Punch by the Porte Cochere.

If you don’t make it for Gay Day, visit any time before January to visit the Wedding Belles: Bridal Fashions from the Marjorie Merriweather Post Family, 1874-1958, exhibit. It’s a delight for anyone interested in wedding fashion.

Clarence J. Fluker is a renaissance man living a life of politics and prose in Washington, D.C. He edits Substance & Style D.C, a blog about culture and community.

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