Carpentier has restored the more than 20 buildings that
make up Eastfield Village, his 14-acre Upstate New York
property which reflects the period 1820-1840 America. In
1971, with a Bachelors degree in historic
preservation, an interest in architecture and the ability
to meet a challenge, Don accepted his dads offer of
property on the family farms east field and
searched the Upstate region for 18th- and 19th-
century buildings that were condemned or abandoned.
Acquiring these buildings, he reassembled them board by
board in the Village where they stand as documents of a
time in history and a way of life long gone. been the
subject of articles in Country Living, Early American
Life, New York Newsday, The New York Times.
To achieve authenticity while reconstructing each building, it was necessary for Don to teach himself the crafts of tinsmithing, woodworking and blacksmithing, Refining and perfecting his skills over decades has earned him wide acclaim. He is called upon by Old Sturbridge Village, Williamsburg, the Farmers Museum and Monticello to acquaint their staffs with the life and tools of over a century ago. As a respected craftsman and historian, Dons expertise was called upon to serve as art director of the Merchant-Ivory film "The Bostonians", assistant art director on "The Europeans", historical consultant on the Jack Nicholson, Meryl Streep film "Ironweed", and advisor on "The Age of Innocence".
For more than 20 years, Eastfield Village has been a classroom for students of masonry, millwork and other restoration and craft techniques. Experts are invited to lead educational workshops in their specialities, using the Village buildings as hands-on projects. The Workshops of Historic Preservation and Historic Trades at Eastfield Village is a widely respected place of leaning dedicated to preserving Early American architecture and pre-Industrial crafts. Students attend from around the world and include museum specialists, preservationists, horticultural historians, restoration craftsmen and hobbyists. They come to learn bygone skills and get just a taste of the past by staying in the Village without electricity and running water. Some of the subjects he covers have been compiled in the Great American Craftsman video series.
A self-taught potter, Don creates Mochaware, the vibrantly colored plates and mugs found in 18th- and 19th century kitchens and taverns. His methods and tools for making Mochaware are authentic, producing pieces that are difficult to distinguish from the originals. Dons work has received praise from the Henry Francis duPoint Winterthur Museum in Delaware, the Iron Bridge-Coalport Museum in Englands Shropshire, and Paul Atterbury; a regular on the BBC produced Antiques Road Show and Ceramics Monthly magazine. Don has been created china for Old Sturbridge Village and some of his feather-edge creamware dinner service is displayed in several interpretive sites in Colonial Williamsburg.
Don lives in Eastfield with his wife, Denise, and children, Hannah and Jared. It was on this property as a 14-year old boy, that he started his first collection; medicine bottles. When his bottle collection became unwieldy, he constructed a storage place for them out of old buildings he found in the fields.