This year at our annual Twelfth-Night celebrations, visitors could enter the kitchen for a short lecture and demonstration. The archaeology and curatorial teams gave the talks to explain two important food items that play a part in Kenmore's history and the holiday, gingerbread and flip. Our first demonstration was done by Emma Schlauder, Research Archaeologist … Continue reading Cooking up holiday treats: Gingerbread and Flip
This past week the curatorial and archeology departments came together to fulfill a long-held dream to make oyster ice cream. Many people asked "why?" others said "gross," and many just shook their heads at our endeavor. But we are not easily put off by odd things in history. In fact, many of us seek them … Continue reading Oyster Ice Cream: The Enigma
The concept of buying items to remember certain events or travels is commonplace today. Who goes abroad without bringing back a trinket naming the location? Is it possible to go antiquing without seeing an item that commemorates the wedding of Charles and Diana? Even the smallest item has the ability to tell a story through … Continue reading Catherine of Braganza: How the copy of a 17th-century plate tells the story of design, consumer consumption, and the Washington Family
The design of books today is an art form. Think about it. What will catch the reader's eye? What cover art will convey the theme or subject of the pages inside? If you've ever pulled an older book off a shelf, say one owned or used by George Washington (or a descendant of the family), … Continue reading Marbled Paper – The (Secret) Art and Function of Paint Blobs
Ask someone to list traditional summertime activities, and they will probably mention picnics, family reunions, beach vacations, mountain getaways, and baseball games. Their list is likely to include going to the fair as well. The fair as a summer pastime is a long tradition and, like many American traditions, can be traced back to the … Continue reading Summertime Fun: Colonial June Fair
School is out for summer…almost! Students are counting down the days until they are free from homework, but the learning does not have to stop!. The George Washington Foundation has been busy preparing fun-filled summer camps to encourage critical thinking through exploring the past. In our Camp George v. George, students will be asked, “Would … Continue reading Camp George v. George: A Summer Camp to Travel Back to Colonial Virginia
We are excited to be celebrating George Washington's 290th birthday (although it's the day before his actual birth date) on President's Day! On February 22, 1732, George was born in Westmoreland County, Virginia. Some interesting facts are associated with his birth-date and the subsequent birthday celebrations he would have as an adult. For instance, did … Continue reading Happy Birthday, George!
The staff at the George Washington Foundation posited the idea of what it would be like to go on a date with a Founding Figure. We use the term “Founding Figure,” because a couple of dates are with the ladies of the American Revolutionary period and not just the “fathers.” Although, fun fact, the term … Continue reading My Date with a Founding Figure
Usually, at this time of year preparations are well underway for our annual Twelfth Night at Kenmore: A Dramatic Performance. The play takes place in January 1776, during the first Christmas season celebrated at Kenmore. Unfortunately, this year’s celebration of Twelfth Night at Kenmore is canceled due to winter weather. However, if you are familiar … Continue reading What in the World is Twelfth Night?: A Visit with the Ghost of Twelfth Night Past
On a typical day at George Washington’s Boyhood Home at Ferry Farm, visitors experiencing the house tour are ushered into the main hall upon which a dining table is set out before them with 18th-century reproductions of plates, glassware, wine bottles, and serving dishes. This setting creates an interactive experience for our visitors, transporting them … Continue reading Dig These Dishes! We Recreate an 18th Century Table Setting Using Only Artifacts.