10 complete and 15 fragments of burnt persimmon seeds. 2 seeds were destroyed during identification. original total count is 27. Latin name: Diospyros virginiana. Persimmon seeds were the most common type of seed found in the House for Families. They were also present in the South Grove Midden which suggests that they were eaten both by plantation owners and the enslaved population. Persimmon is a native fruit and was easily dried and preserved. It also had a variety of medicinal uses. (McKnight, Justine W. 2015. "A Study of Macro-botanical Remains Recovered from the House for Families at George Washington?s Mount Vernon 44FX762/40 and 44FX762/47".)

Object Type

Has it Been Conserved?


Where Was It Found?

Project Site: House for Families    [more details]



Manufacturing Technology



Seed, persimmon




18th Century

Country of Origin

United States


8.58mm x 3.78mm x 12.32mm (W x H x L)

Illustration shows object in comparison to the size of a quarter


1.19 gram(s)

Object Number


DAACS Number


Project: House for Families

The structure identified as the “House for Families” on the 1787 Vaughan plan likely housed the majority of the enslaved population living at the Mansion House Farm for much of the second half of the eighteenth century. The building was in existence from circa 1760 until it was demolished in late 1792 or early 1793. The archaeological evidence for the structure consisted of a brick-lined storage cellar (44FX762/40-47) measuring roughly six feet by six feet. Historically the cellar served as a handy trash receptacle once it ceased to be used for its original storage function, and through extensive excavation has yielded an extremely rich assemblage of household refuse. The analysis of these remains offers the opportunity to study important aspects of the daily lives of Mount Vernon's enslaved community.

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Mount Vernon's object research is ongoing and information about this object is subject to change. For information on image use and reproductions, click here.
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