The excitement building among Downton Abbey fans is echoed in the halls of Vrooman Mansion. Take advantage of our Return to Downton Abbey Royal Package during the Sept. 20 weekend and make the movie’s premiere just part of a complete immersion into a Victorian world.
A stay at Vrooman Mansion bed and breakfast provides you the genteel experience that leaves you feeling like the lord or lady of the manor. Vrooman’s real-life timeline can match the Downton Abbey timeline as chronicled by the BBC television series.
When Matthew Scott and Julia Green bought the mansion in 1873, Carson would have been a teen in the early years of his butler career, predating the scope of the show.
Julia was widowed in 1891, the same year Mary was born. The Earl of Grantham, Robert Crawley, had just wed American heiress Cora Levison the year before.
Julia and Matthew’s daughter, also named Julia, was a contemporary of Cora and Robert’s sister Rosamond, although on the other side of the pond. She married Carl Vrooman in 1896, four years after Edith’s birth and a year after Sybil’s.
We enter the Crawley’s world about 1912, the same year Woodrow Wilson was elected president in the United States. When Wilson takes office and names his cabinet, Carl Vrooman takes the seat of Assistant Secretary of Agriculture … and Mary and cohorts drag a dead man from Mary’s bed at the family estate. That’s the kind of drama that separates Downton Abbey from Vrooman Mansion.
Dramatic American Lives
Yet the characters of our little American mansion are far from boring.
Remember how we thought the Crawley women were generally forward-thinking? Well, they were, but they were decades behind the Julias. Julia Scott was a successful businesswoman, like Mary, and she ran the family businesses after her husband’s death. Like Edith, Julia Vrooman wrote newspaper articles, and like Sybil she showed a genuine concern for the suffering of others less fortunate and helped soldiers. Like Rose, she loved jazz and actually played in a band.
Visit us and learn more as you grace the very rooms where the Scott-Vrooman family lived, laughed and loved, where they slept, entertained, and cried. It’s an opportunity for a closer look at life in a different time, and it provides a new perspective on American and Illinois history.
Happy Hour and Tea
Friday, Sept. 20: or Saturday, Sept. 21: Happy Hour as part of the Downton Abbey Royal Package. Call 309-828-8816 to reserve your place.
Sunday, Sept. 22: A classic, English afternoon tea where The Tea Ladies will lead what promises to be a lively Downton Abbey discussion. Prepare your era-appropriate attire. Tickets must be pre-purchased. Call Nancy: 309-827-2200.
The Victorian experience for those who ask “What is a weekend?”, as Lady Violet did, is available anytime here at Vrooman. Many experiences that earls and duchesses would envy can be had at the mansion, from business training events and retreats to bridal and baby showers. Hold your engagement or wedding on our grounds. Or plan to spend your honeymoon or babymoon here. Let our elegance and hospitality infuse all your events. And certainly, add our events to your calendar of things to do in Bloomington.