A Gift Across the Seas: Betty Washington’s Silver Tea Set from Her Uncle Joseph Ball

Couz. Betty                                                     Stratford by London 2nd [Nov] 1749            I have sent you by your brother Major Washington a Tea Chest; and in it Six Silver Spoons, and Strainer, and Tongs, of the Same. And in one Canister 1/2 L. [pound] of Green Tea, in The other a Pinch Bohee: and the Sugar box is full … Continue reading A Gift Across the Seas: Betty Washington’s Silver Tea Set from Her Uncle Joseph Ball

What’s the Scoop on the Poop?: Going to the Bathroom at Ferry Farm

But seriously…. World Toilet Day – today, November 19 – is kind of a big deal, considering the vast numbers of people across the globe who do not have access to indoor plumbing.  According to the United Nations, 3.6 billion people in the world today do not have a toilet that is “not shared with … Continue reading What’s the Scoop on the Poop?: Going to the Bathroom at Ferry Farm

Colonial Grossology [Video]

Looking back in time, people’s personal hygiene, fashion choices, medical treatments, and more can seem disgusting.  When confronted with gross practices, our first reaction can be to dismiss our ancestors as primitive, ignorant, or just silly.  Before such judgments, however, we should try to understand the reasons behind these practices and recognize that our own … Continue reading Colonial Grossology [Video]

Playing Around: 20th Century Die-Cast Toys Excavated at Ferry Farm

A lot of people don’t realize how many 20th century artifacts we excavate at George Washington’s Ferry Farm.  Up until the 1990s, families lived and farmed on the property, leaving tens of thousands of artifacts behind.  Some of our favorite modern artifacts are the toys we recover, whether marbles, plastic army and cowboy figurines, doll … Continue reading Playing Around: 20th Century Die-Cast Toys Excavated at Ferry Farm

Maritime History at Kenmore & Ferry Farm

Today – September 30 – is World Maritime Day. The United Nations and the International Maritime Organization created World Maritime Day in 1978 “to celebrate the international maritime industry’s contribution towards the world’s economy, especially in shipping.” "The South East Prospect of London from the Tower to London Bridge" (1746) by John Maurer. Credit: Royal … Continue reading Maritime History at Kenmore & Ferry Farm

“Have you found anything today?”: A Review of the 2021 Archaeological Excavation at Ferry Farm

“Have you found anything today?” was (and always is) the most-asked question posed by our daily visitors who stopped by our archaeological site at George Washington's Ferry Farm this summer. Everyone wants to understand what is going on in the very large square hole we have made in the lawn.  “Yes, we find something every … Continue reading “Have you found anything today?”: A Review of the 2021 Archaeological Excavation at Ferry Farm

A National Treasure’s Life: A History of The Declaration of Independence

Join us for our first Movie on the Lawn event at Historic Kenmore on Friday, September 17 as we show National Treasure starring Nicholas Cage and the Declaration of Independence! FACT: George Washington’s Culper Spy Ring used codes, ciphers, and invisible ink (among other tactics) to outwit the British during the American Revolution. FICTION: There … Continue reading A National Treasure’s Life: A History of The Declaration of Independence

“Mark’d with Gunpowder”: Tattoos in Early America

Recently, I came across an interesting notice in an early edition of the Virginia Gazette.  On June 9, 1738, Augustine Washington, George Washington’s father, placed a notice in the newspaper about one of his indentured servants running away.  The notice read… “RAN away from Capt. McCarty’s Plantation, on Pope’s Creek, in Westmoreland County, a Servant … Continue reading “Mark’d with Gunpowder”: Tattoos in Early America