Running and Fifing
Wednesday, August 29, 2018
On the grounds of Mount Vernon, the whistle of a fife signals Don Francisco is near. As Mount Vernon's Resident Fifer and a history interpreter, Don educates visitors about the role of fife and drum music in the American Revolution, as well as entertaining guests with musical renditions of pop tunes and fight songs. Once a year, he changes his pace…
Have you heard about our podcast?
Tuesday, August 28, 2018
Scholars, authors, speakers, professors, and other top academics conduct research at the Washington Library on a daily basis. Two years ago, then-director of the Library Doug Bradburn started Conversations at the Washington Library to engage these visiting researchers and fellows, sharing their work with a wider audience.
In recent episodes, the podcast…
Did the Washingtons Brunch?
Monday, August 13, 2018
Brunch—the linguistic and culinary combination of breakfast and lunch—was popularized in the United States during the 1930s. While the Washingtons didn't enjoy the brunch we know and love today, they frequently enjoyed brunch staples for breakfast and served them to Mount Vernon's ample visitors.
18th-Century White Oak Tree Felled by Rains
Thursday, August 09, 2018
On Tuesday, July 24, Mount Vernon lost a piece of living history—a white oak tree dating to Washington’s time. Located away from public access, the historic tree that lived through the Civil War fell due to the overly saturated ground.
The oak’s trunk had a circumference of almost 12 feet (46 inches in diameter). Between 2004 and 2005, dendrochronologists…
Commemorating Purple Heart Day at Mount Vernon
Tuesday, August 07, 2018
Did you know George Washington created the first United States military award? In his General Orders on August 7, 1782, Washington created three military badges to honor the service of ordinary, common soldiers. One of these awards was the Badge of Military Merit, the precursor to the Purple Heart.
Dr. Gordon Sumner, Ph.D., is the Commander of the…
Operation: George Washington
Friday, August 03, 2018
This summer, celebrate America's first spymaster, George Washington, with a special discount to the International Spy Museum and George Washington's Mount Vernon. From August 1 through September 3, 2018, guests receive 50% off general admission to the International Spy Museum when they visit George Washington's Mount Vernon!
Washington Letter at the…
George Washington: Bee Keeper
Tuesday, July 31, 2018
George Washington ate hoecakes with honey almost every day for breakfast, but where did he get the honey? The only mention of Washington's bees comes from an entry on July 28, 1787, which states three hundred nails were given out at the Circle Storehouse to an indentured English joiner named Matthew Baldridge, “to make a bee house.” Washington is also…
Stolen Tomahawk Gifted by George Washington Returns to New York Museum
Friday, July 27, 2018
An 18th-century Native American pipe tomahawk supposedly given to Seneca chief Cornplanter by President George Washington in 1792 has been returned to the New York State Museum. According to the Times Union, the tomahawk was stolen from the Albany Museum between 1947 and 1950 and has been in the possession of private collectors. An anonymous collector…
Ice Cream and Mosquitoes: Summertime in Virginia
Tuesday, July 24, 2018
On the first day of summer, the collections staff prepared the Mansion for a new season—swapping the springtime food for summer delicacies and dishes. The scenarios in the Butler’s Pantry, Dining Room, Kitchen, Greenhouse Slave Quarters, and Washington Bedchamber reveal this seasonal change.
Dishes and tablewares used in earlier courses…
Podcast: Joe Stoltz on Washington the Surveyor
Thursday, July 19, 2018
As the third-born son, Washington needed a practical career for himself to make money. He read The Art of Surveying and Measuring Land, which helped solidify his future career path—first as a surveyor, then as a military officer.
The Washington Library's digital historian, Joe Stoltz, was recently interviewed by the National Geospatial-Intelligence…