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February 9, 2010

Military antiques focus of new lecture series at CW’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum

From muskets to bayonets to buttons, Erik Goldstein, curator of mechanical arts and numismatics, explores the rich array of 18th-century military antiques during Military Treasures from the Colonial Williamsburg Collections. Guests can enjoy this hour-long program at 7 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 25 at the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum.

Goldstein is a lifelong student of the numismatics, arms, military history and the material culture of the 17th and 18th centuries. After receiving a bachelor’s in fine arts and illustration from Parsons School of Design, N.Y., N.Y., he joined Harmer Rooke Numismatists, also in New York City, before spending the next 12 years as a professional numismatist and consultant.

Since joining Colonial Williamsburg, Goldstein has focused on two distinct specialties. In the area of military history, he has lectured at the “War College of the Seven Years War” at Fort Ticonderoga, Ticonderoga, N.Y., and the Annual Guilford Courthouse “Revolutionary War Lecture Series” in Greensboro, N.C. In the realm of numismatics, he instructs a class on the money of Colonial America as part of the American Numismatics Association’s Summer Seminar every July.

In addition to more than a dozen articles in both specialties, he has authored four books relating to antique weaponry: “The Bayonet in New France 1665-1760,” Museum Restoration Service, Bloomfield, Ontario (1997); “The Socket Bayonet in the British Army 1687–1783,” Mowbray Publications, Lincoln, R.I. (2000); “Eighteenth-century Weapons of the Royal Welsh Fuziliers from Flixton Hall,” and, most recently, “The Brown Bess, an Identification Guide,” to be released in March 2010. In 1997, he was awarded the “Man at Arms Cup” for outstanding service to the field of arms and armor.

This presentation is part of an 11-month series celebrating the 25th anniversary of the Wallace Museum. Programs are scheduled for the fourth Thursday of the month through September and on the third Thursday from October through December 2010.

The Wallace Museum, which opened in 1985, features 15 galleries in 25,000 square feet of exhibition space as well as an auditorium and a café. The museum houses the Foundation’s renowned collection of British and American fine and decorative arts dating from 1600 through 1830. Featured in regularly changing exhibitions, these include the world’s largest collection of Southern furniture; nationally important holdings in English silver and pewter; a vast collection of 18th-century clothing and textiles; and one of the largest collections of British ceramics outside England. Masterworks and period pieces acquired for Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area exhibition buildings bolster the museum’s holdings in furniture, metals, ceramics, glass, paintings, prints, maps, tools, weapons, numismatics and textiles.

Enjoy light fare, a glass of wine or a cold beer at the Wallace Café in the soaring central atrium court of Colonial Williamsburg’s decorative arts museum. The Wallace Café will be open until 6:30 p.m. on the night of the lecture to accommodate lecture guests.

A Colonial Williamsburg admissions ticket, museum pass or Good Neighbor Card provides access to this lecture.

Programs and exhibitions at The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation’s DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum are supported by the DeWitt Wallace Endowment Fund.

The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg are located at 326 W. Francis St. in Williamsburg, Va., and are entered through the Public Hospital of 1773. Operating hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Beginning March 15, hours revert to 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily. For museum program information, telephone (757) 220-7724.

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.

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:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121