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This Week in Historic Alexandria 3.1.16 | Newsletter | City of Alexandria

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alexvanewwebsiteThe City of Alexandria has launched a new version of its official website, designed to simplify information and make searches more efficient.  The new City website can be found at the same web address, www.alexandriava.gov, and the Office of Historic Alexandria (OHA) address also remains the same,www.alexandriava.gov/Historic. Please peruse the new website for both the City government, and OHA as well, and be sure to participate in the online survey. Your comments are very much appreciated!
EVENTS
Tuesday, March 1 – Alexandria Assembly Dance Rehearsal
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum’s performance dance group, the Alexandria Assembly, meets most Tuesday nights for practice and instruction. Monthly donations accepted. Prerequisite: dancers must have participated in one of the Museum’s Thursday night dance class series. Free! 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. For more information, please visit www.gabsbystavern.org or call 703.746.4242.Women of AlexandriaWednesday, March 2 – Lecture: Women of Alexandria, from Antebellum to the 20th Century
Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe Street 
Alexandria spent four years as an occupied city. During that time, daily life became quite different for residents who remained in the city, and in many cases, the war changed the course of women’s lives. Women of Alexandria, from Antebellum to the 20th Century will illuminate an important side of the city’s history that has been under-investigated: the effect of the Civil War on the lives of Alexandria’s women. For more information, please visit or call 703.746-4356.

This program generously supported by a grant from Virginia Foundation for the Humanities.

Thursday, March 4 – Historic Beer Dinner
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
Join us for a culinary adventure with period-inspired food and beverage! Partnering with Yards Brewery and Gadsby’s Tavern Restaurant, enjoy a four course dinner that will be fun, educational, and delectable. Menu:

First Course: grilled lamp pop, fried oysters, assorted cheeses with crackers paired with Jefferson’s Tavern Ale

Second Course: potato leek soup paired with Washington’s Tavern Porter

Third Course: chicken curry with rice and seasonal vegetables paired with Yard’s IPA

Fourth Course: gingerbread with ale frozen custard from The Dairy Godmother paired with Franklin’s Tavern Spruce.

Tickets are priced at $85 per person, inclusive. 7 to 10 p.m. For more information, please visitwww.gabsbystavern.org or call 703.746.4242.

Saturday, March 5 – Docent-Led Tour of Friendship Firehouse Museum
Friendship Firehouse Museum, 107 South Alfred Street 
Volunteers, concerned for the well-being of Alexandria, formed the Friendship Fire Company in 1774. Come for an in-depth guided tour of Friendship’s firehouse and learn about the company’s firefighting procedures and equipment, as well as the different roles the organization played in serving the community. For age 10 and older. Tickets are priced at $5 for adults, $4 ages 10-17. Reservations are required, as space is limited. 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. For more information, please call 703.746.4994 or 3891.

Saturday, March 5 – Dance in the Gallery: Royal Scottish Country Dance Society 
The Athenaeum, 201 Prince Street 
Scottish Country Dancing is the social dancing of Scotland, a tradition that dates back to the 1700s and is globally promoted today by the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society (RSCDS), which is headquartered in Edinburgh. You’ll be able to participate in Scottish Country Dancing while fiddler Becky Ross plays traditional tunes. The dancers will show the audience how it’s done and then invite spectators to give it a try. No partner is needed. Free! 2 p.m. For more information, please visit www.nvfaa.org or call 703.548.0035.

Sunday, March 6 – Women’s History Tour
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
In honor of Women’s History Month, tours of Gadsby’s Tavern Museum on Sunday, March 6 will highlight the many roles women played in tavern life—from owners to enslaved workers and overnight guests to event participants. Regular admission charged: $5 for adults and $3 for children 5-12 years old. Groups of 10 or more should call to book a time, otherwise no reservations needed. 1 to 4 p.m. For more information, please visit www.gabsbystavern.org or call 703.746.4242.

Sunday, March 6 – Winter Warmer Ladies Tea
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
Enjoy the warmth and hospitality of the tavern this winter! Choose from a variety of 18th-century desserts while you sip John Gadsby’s special blend of tea or take a cup of American Heritage Chocolate. Historic guest Rebecca Ramsey Reese (early 20th century preservationist) will catch you up on the latest Alexandria news during the tea. Tickets are priced at $35 inclusive. Seatings at 3 and 3:15 p.m. (Arrive early for the 2:15 or 2:45 p.m. FREE tour before your tea.) For more information, please visit www.gabsbystavern.org or call 703.746.4242.

Monday, March 7 – Lecture: Women of Alexandria, from Antebellum to the 20th Century
The Athenaeum, 201 Prince Street 
Alexandria spent four years as an occupied city. During that time, daily life became quite different for residents who remained in the city, and in many cases, the war changed the course of women’s lives. Women of Alexandria, from Antebellum to the 20th Century will illuminate an important side of the city’s history that has been under-investigated: the effect of the Civil War on the lives of Alexandria’s women. Free! 7 p.m. For more information, please visit www.nvfaa.org or call 703.548.0035.

This program generously supported by a grant from Virginia Foundation for the Humanities.

Now on Exhibit – Who These Wounded Are: The Extraordinary Stories of the Mansion House Hospital
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 North Fairfax Street
Come see the site that inspired Mercy Street, the new PBS’ series inspired by real events that took place at Carlyle House. The six-episode program revolves around the doctors, nurses, and patients of Mansion House Hospital, a former luxury hotel owned by James Green, a prominent Alexandria businessman who resided in Carlyle House.

James Green purchased Carlyle House and the adjacent Bank of Alexandria in 1848. While living in Carlyle House with his family, he converted the Bank Building into the successful Mansion House Hotel. The hotel thrived, and Green expanded it in the 1850s. In November of 1861, the Union Army took over both the hotel and the mansion, turning the hotel into a hospital and the house into doctor and officer housing. The new exhibit recreates the days of Union occupation and tells the true stories of those who lived and worked here during the war. This is where Mercy Street really happened.  Tuesday through Saturday 10 am to 4 p.m.; Sunday, 12 p.m. –to 4 p.m. For further information please visit www.carlylehouse.org or call 703.549.2997.

Now on Exhibit – The Lyceum:  175 Years of Local History
The Lyceum, Alexandria’s History Museum, 201 South Washington Street
This new exhibition highlights the history of The Lyceum, as well as its role today as a place for exploring Alexandria’s past.  On view in the museum’s Coldsmith Gallery, the historical objects and images featured represent The Lyceum, the community at work, and commemorations and celebrations.  Throughout the exhibition, visitors are invited to “be the curator” and think about why the various artifacts are in museum’s collection, and about how these tangible representatives of the past help tell the story of Alexandria’s history.

Museum visitors can also explore artifacts relating to commemorating or celebrating something important in someone’s life, or that serve as a memento representing an organization, business, or event.  For example, five World War II service medals from a local soldier are on view, as well as a china pitcher promoting William Henry Harrison’s campaign for the presidency, and a colorful hand-worked quilt commemorating the Bicentennial of the American Revolution in 1976.  The Lyceum:  175 Years of Local History includes a variety of items providing a glimpse into different types of work in Alexandria since the community was founded in the 18th century.  Objects range from circa 1796 wares marked by Alexandria silversmith Adam Lynn, a circa 1880 dresser manufactured by James F. Muir and Brothers, to a collage of original photographs – circa 1970 — documenting the Alexandria, Barcroft & Washington Rapid Transit Company.

Open Monday through Saturday 10 am to 5 p.m. and Sundays 1 to 5 p.m.   For more information call 703.746.4994, or see www.alexandriahistory.org.

Now on Exhibit – Wings from Chains
The Athenaeum, 201 Prince Street
Wings from Chains is an open call competition inviting artists to consider women’s roles and responsibilities in society – yesterday, today, and tomorrow – and to explore the transformation from oppression to liberation, shame to pride, and drudgery into art. Free! Open Thursday through Sunday, 12 Noon to 4 p.m. For more information, please visit www.nvfaa.org or call 703.548.0035.

Now on Exhibit – Journey to Be Free: Alexandria Freedmen’s Cemetery 
Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe Street 
A new exhibit tracing the 150-year history of the long-forgotten Freedmen’s Cemetery, its rediscovery and how the new Contrabands and Freedmen’s Cemetery Memorial was created at the site.  Free, but donations are appreciated. Tuesday to Saturday: 10 am to 4 p.m., Sunday and Monday: Closed. For more information, please call 703.746.4356.

Now on Exhibit – Their Fates Intertwined: The Lees of Alexandria in the War of 1812 
Lee-Fendall House and Gardens, 614 Oronoco Street 
A new exhibit on the experiences of the Lee family in Alexandria during the War of 1812 examines the contributions of Alexandria’s citizens during the conflict that led to the writing of our national anthem through the lives of this iconic Virginia family. For more information, please visit www.leefendallhouse.org or call 703.548.1789.

Now on Exhibit – Fifty Years of Collecting: An Anniversary Exhibit of Objects from the Fort Ward Collection 
Fort Ward Museum, 4301 West Braddock Road
In recognition of the 50th anniversary of the opening of Fort Ward Museum & Historic Park, this new exhibition offers a glimpse into the growth and holdings of the Museum’s fine Civil War collection.The exhibit features some rare items related to the Defenses of Washington, such as an 1862 panoramic drawing of Fort Albany by the soldier-artist William Lydston, a folding camp chair that belonged to an officer in the 1st Connecticut Heavy Artillery, and a Lambley’s portable copying machine used by an officer from the 57th Massachusetts Infantry.   Objects that interpret the Union occupation of Alexandria, such as a proclamation declaring martial law in the city, are also featured.  Examples of newly acquired objects are a field desk with personal belongings owned by a captain in the 107th New York Infantry, and a John Rogers statuary group, “Uncle Ned’s School,” which aimed to portray the efforts of newly freed African Americans to better their lives through education in the postwar years.

Fort Ward is the best preserved of the extensive network of Union forts and batteries known as the Civil War Defenses of Washington. Free! Tuesday through Saturday from 10 am to 5 p.m., and Sundays from noon to 5 p.m.   For more information, please call 703.746.4848 or visitwww.fortward.org.

City Museums and
Historic Sites
Other Historic Sites and Resources
This Week in Historic Alexandria

District of Columbia

On March 1, 1790, the Congress of the United States passed an act requiring a regular census of the United States.  The first census completed that year determined that Virginia was the most populous state in the country with 747,610 residents, well more than double that of the State of New York.  Fairfax County, of which Alexandria then a part, contained 12,320 residents, with 2,482 people living within the town itself.
On Sale Now

Doc Scantlin and his Imperial Palms Orchestra

On Saturday, March 19, the Gadsby’s Tavern Museum Society proudly presents the Best Bib & Tucker Ball 2016with a Mardi Gras theme! For a night of unforgettable reverie, come join Doc Scantlin and his Imperial Palms Orchestra, featuring the dazzling costumes and voices of Chou Chou and the Girlfriends, for dancing and entertainment. Enjoy sumptuous New Orleans cuisine featuring oyster bar and copious libations. Ticketsare priced at $150 per person.  For more information please visit Gadsby’s Tavern Museum Society website or call 703.746.4242.
Commemorative
Corner

The Alexandria Society for the Preservation of Black Heritage (ASPBH)

The Alexandria Society for the Preservation of Black Heritage (ASPBH) is currently seeking teachers for educational staff support, and volunteers willing to serve on the planning committee who can lend assistance with event logistics. For more information, please contact the Event Chair Tracye Funn on 202-624-9082.

Since 1980, the ASPBH has sought to continue its mission to identify, preserve and educate the overall Alexandria community of its illustrious black heritage by:

• Preserving, collections and promoting the early history and impressive contributions of the black community of Alexandria
• Financial support and volunteer services for the daily operations of the Alexandria Black History Museum
• Over twenty years inspiring a diverse group of local children via the Martin Luther King Jr. poster exhibition

For more information about ASPBH programs and events, please visit the website atwww.alexblackhistory.org or by visiting the Alexandria Black History Museum.

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