Similar to the Dining Room, over the years, sunlight streaming through the western-facing windows had reduced the library’s magnificent red silk damask draperies to faded tatters.

The opulent library featured prominently when Ruth and Ogden entertained. The Mills were known for being enthusiastic high-stakes bridge players and guests would convene in the library for lively conversation and card parties that went on until the wee hours of the morning.


The drapery project was funded in 2021 in part with a generous grant of $32,000 from the New York State Park and Trail Grant Program (NYSPTGP) for “Sustaining Splendor: Reproducing the Elegant Draperies of Staatsburgh’s Library.” The cost of this project was approximately $64,000 – the grant supplied half of that with the Friends raising the remaining $32,000

The custom-made materials used to make the drapes very closely replicate the Gilded Age materials of the mansion’s historic drapes. Drapery fabric was made by Kravet/Lee Jofa and trims, tie-backs and tassels were supplied by Samuel & Sons.

Once again, volunteers from the New York Capital District Chapter of the Embroiderers’ Guild of America worked many hours on the creation of the stunning new drapes for the room’s 7 enormous windows and terrace door.


Although not a Friends project, moving all the collections from the floor to install the new draperies, allowed the newly repaired historic carpet to be re-installed in the library.

Both the draperies and the carpet totally transformed the library back to its glory.

We think Mrs. Mills would be pleased.


Decorative flourish

Click through the gallery below for more photos of our library project.

Completed photographs courtesy of Pieter Estersohn.

detail shot of a glass bowl on top of a table inside the mansion

“These projects can be pretty involved when we do it right. They can take time and need support so we’re very grateful to the Friends of Mills for helping us with these projects.”