As the Greek work kosmopolitês suggests, Hortense certainly could be considered a citizen of the world. Through observing this elegant black and blue satin day dress (from the 1920s) one can become more acquainted with Hortense and her cosmopolitan qualities. The dress was made in France by the Callot Soeurs, but has an Oriental-style design. In addition, such a dress could have been worn on a relaxing day at home at the villa, perhaps a time when Hortense was reading up on the various places she wanted to explore in person. By combining these observations one can clearly see how the term ‘cosmopolitan’ relates to Hortense.

Hortense is a great example of how traveling and experiencing other cultures can help someone attain knowledge. There are many books, letters, and postcards that give evidence of her desire and ability to travel and show that her love for entertainment was not contained to Villa La Pietra. In the collection, there are books with her bookplate on the subjects of travel including books on China, Japan, Paris, Egypt, and Italy.


Collections and Photographs

Letters from Hortense Mitchell Acton to Frederick Stibbert