White-painted interior woodwork, one of the greatest charms of the Colonial house, provides the only architectural background that conveys satisfactorily the sense of mellow warmth and graceful dignity in eighteenth-century furniture of mahogany and other dark woods.  It constitutes the setting in which the furniture gems of the room are displayed.  Bright and cheerful, chaste and beautiful, it emphasizes the grace of line and richness of color of everything before it, yet seldom forces itself into undue prominence by reason of its color contrast or detail.  Indeed, this treatment of interiors has stood the test of time and we now appreciate what excellent taste our great-grandfathers manifested in depending upon its subtle influence to display the beauties of their rare pieces of furniture — Chippendale, Heppelwhite, Sheraton and Adam, brought from overseas.

From The Colonial Architecture of Salem

By Frank Cousins and Phil M. Riley

First printing in 1919.