In just over a decade, note George Humphrey Yetter and Carl R. Lounsbury, Williamsburg, Virginia went from “a backwaters outhern town” in 1926 until 1934 when it became “a national icon.” Few cities in America give this country historical credibility to match the Old World for historic architecture. Williamsburg is one of those cities, and thus Yetter and Lounsbury’s new book from Yale University Press, Restoring Williamsburg, is the latest selection for our series on exciting new coffee table books, Just Booked.
The new tome is a total time warp, filled with pictures before, during, and after Williamsburg’s revival. In 1926, that backwater met its savior in local rector W.A.R. Goodwin. The passionate pastor convinced John D. Rockefeller Jr. to spend millions buying up historic properties and restore them. Yetter and Lounsbury’s book is a fascinating dive into not only the immediate before and after of Williamsburg, but is an excellent primer for those who may not be familiar with this iconic Virginia city.