Vincent Elizabeth Barnett, President of The Millay Society, painted by Millay’s brother-in-law, Charles Ellis at Steepletop cr. 1965
Dear Friends of Millay
As you know, The Millay Society is facing a financial crisis. Earlier this year, we launched the Save Steepletop campaign to raise much needed financial support and increase public awareness about our situation.
We are immensely grateful for the outpouring of support from poetry, culture, and history lovers who sent financial contributions as well as ideas that might help the cause. And, thanks to the hard work and devotion of our staff and volunteers, we also saw an increase in revenue from visitor tours and gift shop sales.
But while that income, together with donations, helped us close the 2018 deficit, the total was not enough to allow us to keep Steepletop open to the public.
The mission of the Millay Society is to preserve the poet’s literary legacy and to protect Steepletop, a National Historic Landmark. Since 1986 our goal, as stewards of this remarkable property and unique collection of personal artifacts, was to open Steepletop to the public so future generations could learn about and be inspired by Millay’s life and work. In 2010, we achieved this goal.
Due to a lack of significant financial support, however, the Society Board has recently made the painful but responsible decision not to re-open Steepletop to the public in 2019. We will, of course, continue to maintain and preserve the site, and map out a new plan for its future. Our existing funds and new donations are critical to the ongoing protection of the site and collections.
Steepletop still needs your help and support. While we have taken the first steps toward creating a new vision for Steepletop, the site and collection will quickly fall into disrepair if we are unable to maintain it. Together we have achieved many goals in recent years, and I am asking for your help to keep Steepletop moving in the right direction. Your support will have a lasting impact on our ability to preserve Millay’s beloved home and extensive personal collection, and to safeguard the 192-acre property.
If you are in a position to make a significant contribution, there is no better time than now. Gifts of all sizes will make a tremendous difference. Our goal is to raise $50,000 during this annual appeal.
We are grateful for your continued support and thank you in advance for helping us protect the country estate that inspired one of America’s most notable poets, a woman far ahead of her time, the fearless and brilliant Edna St. Vincent Millay.
The Society's mission is to illuminate the life and writings of Edna St. Vincent Millay and to preserve and interpret the character of Steepletop, her home and gardens, places where nature inspires the creative spirit.