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December 12, 2008

CW introduces companion book to exhibit in Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum

Just in time for the gift-giving season, Colonial Williamsburg has published a charming companion book to the popular “Down on the Farm” exhibit in the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum. The family-friendly exhibit and book follow the adventures of Prince, a dog from the city who decides to visit his cousin in the country.

Prince is a carved and painted wooden folk art dog (circa 1930-1935) created by Irvin Weil of Coopersburg, Pa., who based the carving on his real pet dog. The lively and innovative display allows children to learn about folk art as they follow the story of the dog as he travels through the countryside. The illustrated museum labels that explain the art to museum visitors are in the form of storybooks, adding to the delight of the children learning about Prince and other pieces of folk art in the exhibit.

Children follow Prince’s adventures as he discovers new friends and places while he encourages them to learn about works of art – whether or not they visit the museum. The rhyming text for the book delights young children, and the colorful illustrations of trains, farm scenes, animals and pets spark the imagination. The book includes 34 stickers of works of folk art from the museum. Prince asks readers to find the sticker that fits in the story and place it on the page. Older readers can learn the name, date and origin of the art work on a sticker information page.

“Down on the Farm” was written by Jan Gilliam and Christina Westenberger and illustrated by Kathleen Tobin. Publication was made possible by the generosity of Mr. and Mrs. L.D. Campbell, Mr. and Mrs. V.T. Kramer and Ms. M.E. Cottrill in memory of Chris and Esther Cottrill, for instilling the love of reading in their daughters, Sarah Lu, Virginia Sue and Mary Esther.

“Down on the Farm” is available for $12.95 at WILLIAMSBURG Booksellers® in Colonial Williamsburg’s Visitor Center, 101A Visitor Center Drive, in the Museum Store at 325 West Francis St. and other Colonial Williamsburg retail outlets.

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture – stories of our journey to become Americans – while historic trades people research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution for its guests, it also invites them to interact with history. “Revolutionary City®” – a dramatic live street theater presentation, is a 2008 Rand McNally Best-of-the-Road™ Editor’s Pick. Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64. For more information about Colonial Williamsburg, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s Web site at

Media Contact:
Barbara Brown
(757) 220-7280