When you come to Mount Vernon these days, you may be surprised to see a closed door at the top of the stairs, on the second floor. If you’re like me, when I go to a historic house, I’m always curious about what I can’t see – what’s behind a closed door or beyond a roped-off stairway?

So what’s going on behind the door at the head of the stairs?

In the Washingtons’ day, the closed door might have signaled that someone was asleep. These days, it means that exciting preservation work is underway – a thorough investigation, refurbishment, and refurnishing of the bedchamber that the Washingtons knew as the Blue Room.

The project began on February 23, the day after we celebrated George Washington’s 285th birthday. Our collections management staff—Caitlin, Michelle, Caitlyn, and Mark—cleared the room, carefully taking down pictures and moving out furniture.

Once the room was empty, our architectural preservation staff—Andy, Caroline, Dave, Eric, John and Steve—moved in. Over the next few weeks, they will be repairing and whitewashing the ceiling, preparing for the reintroduction of the original mantel and documenting their findings along the way.

Stay tuned for upcoming peeks behind the door …

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