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This Week in Historic Alexandria 8.3.16 | Newsletter | City of Alexandria

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WHAT’S NEW IN HISTORIC ALEXANDRIA
Historic Alexandria Museum ShopIt’s time for Historic Alexandria Museum Shops to make room for new signature and holiday merchandise, so a huge sale is now underway at The Lyceum, Alexandria’s History Museum retail store, until August 11. Drastic markdowns on a variety of items are now available, including seasonal décor, gifts and Alexandria heritage merchandise. Don’t miss the biggest sale of the year for OHA and toast your good sense in support of our city’s great history!
EVENTS
The LyceumThursday, August 4 – Lecture-The History of Chocolate
The Lyceum, Alexandria’s History Museum, 201 South Washington Street
Dave Borghesani, chocolate history research manager at Mars Chocolate North America, will present the fascinating story of how chocolate became a part of our culture and everyday life. Tickets include the lecture and a special chocolate tasting of food and beverages made with Mars’ Historic Chocolate. Proceeds benefit the preservation of two important fire-fighting vehicles on display at Friendship Firehouse Museum: The Rodgers Suction Engine, built in 1851, and the Prettyman Hose Carriage, built in Alexandria in 1858. Tickets are priced at $25 per person. 7 to 9 p.m., doors open at 6:30 p.m. For more information, please call 703.746.4554.Thursday, August 4 – Jane Austen Dance Class
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
In preparation for the Jane Austen Ball on August 13, learn 18th-century English country dancing from expert dance instructors. Remaining classes are August 4, and August 11. Tickets are priced at $12 per person, per class, and reservations are recommended. 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. For more information, please visit gadsbys.tavern@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.4242.

Friendship FirehouseFriday, August 5 – Friendship Firehouse Fundraising Event
Friendship Firehouse Museum, 107 South Alfred Street
Proceeds benefit the preservation of two important fire-fighting vehicles on display at Friendship Firehouse Museum: The Rodgers Suction Engine, built in 1851, and the Prettyman Hose Carriage, built in Alexandria in 1858. The event begins with a special Curator’s tour of Friendship Firehouse and the historic fire equipment. Remarks will follow the tour and conclude with a reception across the street at Taverna Cretekou. Event tickets start at $50 per person, with levels of sponsorship, and a one year membership is included in the event ticket. 5:30 to 9 p.m. For more information, please call 703.746.4554.

Saturday, August 6 – Tavern Day Open House
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street 
Want to dance like George Washington? Ever heard of a beef olive? Then come to Gadsby’s Tavern Museum’s FREE open house! Experience Alexandria’s five-star hotel of the 18th century, made famous by John Gadsby, whose guests included George Washington and Thomas Jefferson. Explore the museum with costumed guides, learn more about 18th century foodways, and enjoy period music and dancing in the historic ballroom. Free! 1 to 5 p.m. For more information, please email gadsbys.tavern@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.4242.

Carlyle HouseSaturday, August 6 – “A Fine Beginning”: Housewarming at Carlyle House
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 North Fairfax Street
In August 1753, John Carlyle and his wife, Sarah Fairfax Carlyle, moved into their new home in Alexandria.  That night, Sarah gave birth to a son, William.  Come visit the museum and learn about 18th century colonial family life. Children can also play 18th century games on the front lawn. Free, but $1 donation per person is suggested. 12 to 4 p.m. For more information, please visitwww.carlyehouse.org or call 703.549.2997.

Sunday, August 7 – Special Civil War Tour of Apothecary
Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum, 105-107 South Fairfax Street
The Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum will offer special tours, The Apothecary and the Civil War, every Sunday at 12:30 p.m. through Labor Day weekend. This approximately 30 minute tour will feature themes similar to PBS’s Mercy Street. Topics include abolitionism in the Quaker community, prescriptions from the Civil War era, and the Leadbeater family during the war. Special archival materials will be showcased during the tour and period ingredients covered in detail. Tickets are priced at $6 per person and are limited, so advance purchase is suggested. Tickets may also be sold at the door, if available for that day’s tour. Doors open at 12:15 p.m. and will lock once the tour begins at 12:30 p.m. For more information or tickets, please call 703.746.3852.

Gadsby's TavernSunday, August 7 – Special Family Tours at Gadsby’s Tavern
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street
Special Family Tours, led by Junior Docents grades 4-7 offered every Sunday until Labor Day Weekend at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum. Thanks to stationed guides, families will be able to start a tour as soon as they arrive and move through the museum at their own pace, and children will be able to connect with the museum through their peer tour guides. Tour ends with activities in the ballroom that explore the science behind the historic ice well, including making (and tasting) ice cream! Family tours begin June 26 and end Labor Day weekend. $5 adults ($4 with AAA membership), $3 children ages 5 to 12, and 4 and under are free. Alexandria City Public School families and Blue Star Families are free and coupons, including the Key to the City, are accepted. 2 to 5 p.m. For more information, please email gadsbys.tavern@alexandriava.gov or call 703.746.4242.

Sunday, August 7 – In concert: Illya Bunyakyn on Piano
The Lyceum, Alexandria’s History Museum, 201 South Washington Street
Pianist Illya Bunyakyn is sponsored by the Washington Metropolitan Philharmonic Association, with music of Schubert, Chopin, Medtner, and Rachmaninoff. Free, but donations graciously accepted. 3 – 4:30 p.m.  For more information, please visit www.wmpamusic.org or call 703.799.8229.

The AthenaumSunday, August 7 – Kit-Keung Kan Reception
The Athenaeum, 201 Prince Street 
Kit-Keung Kan is Hong Kong‐American artist and physicist who interprets traditional Chinese landscape paintings with his passion for the art form as well as his experience in scientific study and research such as relational concepts and objective abstraction. Free! 4 p.m. For more information, please visit www.nvfaa.org or call 703.548.0035.

Monday, August 8 – Alexandria-Caen Sister City Committee
Alexandria City Hall, 301 King Street, Sister Cities Conference Room 1101
Regular Monthly meeting. Free! 7 p.m. For more information, please call 703.746.4554.

Now on Exhibit – Exhibit Opening August 4: Kit-Keung Kan
The Athenaeum, 201 Prince Street
Kit-Keung Kan is Hong Kong‐American artist and physicist who interprets traditional Chinese landscape paintings with his passion for the art form as well as his experience in scientific study and research such as relational concepts and objective abstraction. Free! Open Thursday through Sunday, 12 to 4 p.m. For more information, please visit www.nvfaa.org or call 703.548.0035.

Now on Exhibit – Medical Care for the Civil War Soldier  
Fort Ward Museum, 4301 West Braddock Road
See “What’s New” segment above. 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.

Now on Exhibit – Hotel vs. Hospital
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 North Royal Street 
Learn the story of the fine hotel industry in Alexandria and how it quickly changed after the Civil War began. The City Hotel (today part of Gadsby’s Tavern Museum at 134 North Royal Street) was the only major hotel in Alexandria to remain open during the entirety of the war.  The two other fine hotels in town, Mansion House (transformed into a massive Civil War hospital) and Marshall House (site of the first Northern and Southern deaths due to violence in the Civil War), had closed. Guests will discover how tavern keeper Samuel Heflebower was able to remain in business as he catered to the new customers arriving in Alexandria.
For more information, please call 703.746.4242.

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 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.

Freedmen CemeteryNow 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.

City Museums and
Historic Sites
Other Historic Sites and Resources
On Sale Now

Jane Austen Ball

On Saturday, August 13, step back to the time of Jane Austen at this late-1790s era ball, at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum.  The evening will feature a variety of English Country dances in the historic ballroom, live music, and “iced refreshments.” Period costume is optional, but “after-five” attire encouraged. Tickets are priced at $45 per person, and reservations are required.

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