The Back Parlor is the less formal of the two parlors in the house, and in many ways, was the center of daily family life. Women would sew and knit here, the children would have lessons or play here, light meals would be taken here, and the family would gather here for prayers.
The room retains several architectural elements from the Victorian Age that were added to the room by John Jay’s grandson in the mid-19th century, including heavy arches flanking the fireplace, and French doors on the opposite wall. Since the house museum is interpreted to the 1820s, in conflict with this room’s later architectural style, the space was converted into an exhibit gallery.
Annual exhibits are produced in-house on subjects relative to the historic site’s mission, providing the opportunity to exhibit items from the collection not normally on display.