WTVP Headlines




Wednesday, December 18th, 2013


David Davis Mansion to Feature a Piece of “Downton Abbey” in Their Christmas Decorations


Christmas at Clover Lawn: November 29th - December 29th

WTVP to Preview Dowton Abbey Season 4 on MASTERPIECE at Normal Theater and the WTVP Studio

- State Historical Site the only place in America to feature ornaments like the ones seen on the Christmas tree in the hit PBS series "Downton Abbey" on MASTERPIECE -

WTVP supporter The David Davis Mansion State Historic Site is lavishly decorated for Christmas and open for free public tours during the entire month of December--from the day after Thanksgiving until the 29th of December. Visitors will be able to view authentic Victorian-era Christmas decorations, including the same kinds of ornaments that were featured on the Downton Abbey tree during Christmas episodes in past seasons of the PBS hit drama Downton Abbey on MASTERPIECE.

The home’s dining room tree will be covered with the same types of rare, imported, German-made Christmas ornaments that were featured on the Downton Abbey tree. Intricate, hand-painted, glass ornaments, imported from Germany and sold by a small company in England, were handpicked to appear on the award-winning show. According to the company’s owner, "These decorations are all hand-crafted and each one is a little work of art in its own right. ‘Downton’ bosses purchased around 1,000 of the festive trimmings, including miniature birds and figurines, because they were exactly the same as those used in 1919 – the year when the drama's Christmas specials were set. The show’s producers went to great lengths to make sure everything was as authentic as possible,” according to Catherine Shinn, the company’s owner. The Davis Mansion’s museum shop has purchased from Shinn’s company approximately $2,000 worth of these rare ornaments for exhibit in the mansion during the 2013 Christmas tours. Some of the ornaments displayed on an authentic feather tree will also be raffled off as a fundraiser for the David Davis Mansion state historic site.

The Davis Mansion’s Christmas decorations are also featured in the 2013 holiday issue of Victorian Homes, a national publication devoted to the history, preservation, decoration and construction of Victorian homes.

Visitors will also be able to use a special Holiday History Pass to visit the David Davis Mansion and to enjoy the Christmas activities at the McLean County Museum of History free of charge. Visitors may enter their holiday passes in a door-prize drawing, and the winner will receive a special prize. Daily tours will be given during the mansion’s normal operating hours from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., Wednesday through Sunday. The David Davis Mansion State Historic Site is administered by the Illinois Historic Preservation Agency. For more information, visit www.daviddavismansion.org

Downton Abbey Season 4 on Masterpiece premieres Sunday, January 5th at 8:00pm on WTVP-HD 47.1. The David Davis Mansion State Historical Site is pleased to support WTVP, local airing of the series, and special events surrounding the series.



Illinois Historic Preservation Agency




For further information contact Stacey Tomczyk, WTVP Promotion Director, (309) 495-0594 or stacey.tomczyk@wtvp.org



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