Commissioned each year by the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, these keepsake ornaments are designed to decorate as well as to educate. Each year, Mount Vernon selects a specific theme—perhaps an architectural element of the Mansion, a featured item in the collection, an interesting aspect of George Washington’s life, or a notable anniversary—to inspire an elegant commemorative ornament. Tucked inside each ornament is a detailed provenance card that provides a quick history on the featured theme.
For many Mount Vernon enthusiasts and ornament-collecting visitors, the release of each year’s featured ornament is a much-anticipated event. It’s an opportunity to learn or re-discover something new about Mount Vernon, George Washington, and early American holiday traditions.
In addition to adding historical flavor to the Christmas celebrations, the ornaments also help to support Mount Vernon, with all proceeds going to benefit the privately-owned estate’s education and preservation mission.
The 2013 ornament features a beautiful Currier & Ives engraving that the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association sold in the 1850-60’s to help raise the money for the purchase of George Washington’s beloved home. A copy of this engraving was purchased and donated by Mrs. James T. Neal, who served as Vice Regent of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association from Indiana from 1992 to 1994.