- Claude Moore Colonial Farm:
This gives you a feel for the farm on the Virginia frontier during
the time we are studying. Occasionally they will have special festivals
that will give you a feel for public life in the era. Take the
outer loop of the beltway to the George Washington Memorial Parkway
just across the Legion Bridge. Follow the signs from the parkway.
Festival: October 4. Callands store is a store
at which Timothy Dalton's children traded in Pittsylvania County VA.
The store and the county clerk's office are still standing. They will
have a court day festival on October 5. If you are in for a drive
in the country, give it a try. The festival has the original buildings
open and features arts and crafts from the area. While you are down
there, you can take a
guided 18th century tour of the area. Take the outer
loop of the beltway to I- 66 west. Exit at the Warrenton US-29 (the
second or third exit for US-29) exit south. Take US-29 through Charlottesville
and Lynchberg to VA-57 at Chatham. Exit west to Callands. Trip
is about five hours one way.
Days in Leesburg: October 18. Leesburg has the celebration annually.
It will give you the flavor of Court Day. There are crafts booth selling
their wares, much as wares were sold in Frontier Virginia. There are
reenactors of various sorts. It is more a Tidewater Court Day than
a frontier version, but it is close and enjoyable. Take the outer
loop to VA-7. Take VA-7 to Leesburg.
- "Give me liberty or give me death!": St.
John's Church on Church Hill in Richmond reenacts Patrick Henry's
speech delivered there in 1775, every Sunday afternoon at 1:30 through
the end of October. Take I-95 south to Richmond. Exit West on
Broad Street. Make a legal U-turn somewhere, and proceed east on Broad.
Watch for the church at the top of Church Hill.
- Mount Vernon:
Sure, George had something to do with the revolution. No speaker,
he, but since it is close it will give you a feel for the life of
a Tidewater Plantation owner that was instrumental in the revolution.
Take I-95 across the Wilson bridge and take the first Virginia
exit. Go south on the George Washington Memorial Parkway to Mount
- Independence Square:
Where the speeches were given, the Declaration signed. Well worth
the experience if you have not been there. Take I-95 north to
Philadelphia. Follow the signs.
It is expensive, but it gives you an unforgettable chance to experience
Tidewater life at the time of the revolution. Williamsburg was one
of three places in America where the revolution was hatched. Take
I-95 south to Richmond. Take I-64 east to Williamsburg.
Declaration of Independence: If you have not seen it, now is the
time. They will keep rushing you along, but take a few minutes and
read that Preamble. Tell them you are a student and your instructor
insists. The Declaration is in the Mall entrance to the National
Archives. Take the Metro to Archives-Navy Memorial.
- Creating the United States : An exhibit at the Library of
Congress dealing with the basic documents of American governance.
- Independence Square:
Where the convention debated the Constitution in strict secrecy, signed
the document, and sent it on its way to the states. Well worth the
experience if you have not been there. Take I-95 north to Philadelphia.
Follow the signs.
- Mount Washington
Tavern: One of the results of the increased commercial and manufacturing
was increased travel, which led to dramatic improvements in the transportation
system. Included in this was the construction of the National Road
in the 1820s. This tavern will give you a flavor of the life of the
traveler in the 1820s. Take I- 270 to I-70 and on to I-68. Exit
to US-40 at Keyser's Ridge MD. The tavern is on US-40 at Farmington
PA, just beyond the Fort Necessity Battlefield National Monument.
- The Senate of
the United States: It's still there. When you make your visit
to the capital, be sure and ask the guide to show you the Senate chamber
in use in the early 1800s. Go when the flag is flying on the Senate
side. Sit in the balcony and imagine great oratory. Or, if you really
want to imagine, you can take the Virtual
Tour of the Capital Building, but isn't the real thing better?
Take the Metro to Union Station and walk south.
Monument, Maryland: The site of one of those glorious civic celebrations
in 1837. This was the first monument to George Washington and was
built by the citizens of Washington County MD. Climb to the top and
look out on the multitudes. Imagine the gala and the patriotic speeches
that were there at its dedication. Take I-270 north beyond Frederick.
Exit at US-40 ALT west. Go through Middletown to the crest of South
Mountain. Turn right to Washington Monument State Park.
This is a strange inclusion at this point in the course. Jefferson
has always been lurking around the edges of the course. Jefferson
did not, however, particularly like to speak and he was not a forceful
speaker. Nevertheless, he is an excellent example of the ideal of
the "orator" at the time. The tour of Monticello concentrates on Jefferson
the farmer, but between the lines and by touring the museum at the
bottom of the hill, you will get the sense for the educated moral
leader. Take I-66 west from the beltway to the US-29 Gainesville
exit. Take US-29 south to Charlottesville. Follow the signs.
Rhetoric of the American Frontier
- Museum of American Frontier
Culture: This is an interesting museum that shows how the various
strains of European immigration influenced the American farm. It is
useful to you to see an American farm during the late frontier experience.
Take I-66 west from the beltway to I-81. Take I-81 south to Staunton.
Follow the signs.
The Reform Community, 1830-60
- Harpers Ferry National Historical
Park: This is a wonderful time of the year to go to Harper's Ferry.
It is one of the earth's most beautiful spots. But your interest is
in John Brown's raid on the Harpers Ferry armory in 1859. Be sure
and visit the museum along the old main street. It tells the story
of slavery and of abolition in addition to telling the story of the
Brown raid. It is marvelously done. Take I-270 north from the
Beltway to Frederick MD. Take US-340 west from Frederick to Harper's
Ferry. After crossing the Potomac and Shenandoah River bridges, go
to the top of the hill and you will see the signs to the National
Park parking lot.
- Frederick Douglass Museum
and Hall of Fame for Caring Americans: Not to be confused
with its more famous cousin listed below, this townhouse on Capital
Hill was Frederick Douglass' first house upon arriving in Washington.
He lived here during the Civil War. It now houses a Douglass
Museum. Owned by the Caring Americans Foundation, it also includes
a Hall of Fame for that organization. Take metro to Union
Station. East on Massachusetts Avenue to 3rd St. NE. South
on 3rd St. to A St. NE. West on A to house on right.
- The Frederick Douglass National
Historical Site: Douglass spent the last days of his life in Washington
DC. This site is his last home and tells the story of Douglass from
slave on Maryland's Eastern Shore to his life of leadership in the
Abolitionist movement. The site is located at 1411 W St. SE in Anacostia.
Telling the Story of the Slave Quarters
One of the outstanding features of Monticello is an excellent tour
of the slave row at Monticello. This is a row of craftsmen owned by
Jefferson, and there is no help with the field hands. You will see
a community more integrated into Monticello than those we talked about,
but you have some view of their life. Take I-66 west from the
beltway to the US-29 Gainesville exit. Take US-29 south to Charlottesville.
Follow the signs.
Grove: One of the series of plantations along the James River
east of Richmond has researched the slave quarters. I have not visited
this, but I understand it is outstanding. Take I-95 south to I-264
north of Richmond. Take I-264 south to I-64 East. Take I-64 east to
Williamsburg. Take S. England Street which becomes "The Country Road"
and leads to Carter's Grove.
- Booker T. Washington National
Monument: The only site in the National Park Service devoted to
slavery. The site itself isn't much, but the exhibits are nice. I
would visit only if you are in the area. Take I-66 west from the
beltway to US-29 south to Warrenton (make sure you take the Warrenton
exit, it is the third time you can exit on US-29). Take US-29 south
through Charlottesville and Lynchberg to VA State highway 40 at Gretna.
Take VA-40 west to VA-122 near Rocky Mount. At VA-122 north to the
Your flavor of the Cavalier South will come from a visit to a Southern
Plantation house of the 1850s and 1860s. There are lots of them. Most
charge you some admission (somewhere between $3 and $10 per head). For
the money you get a sense for the elegant life of the plantation household.
You will see the gentility. Look for the evidence of the Cavalier characteristics
-- the drawing room elegantly appointed where the affairs of the day would
be debated and the Yankees excoriated, the sense of inherited wealth,
the sense of duty, honor, country. If you select your own example for
a tour, pay some attention to the time period. Some houses of the area
are too early -- Mount Vernon, for example -- and others were redone for
a later period and so lost their Cavalier characteristics -- Montpelier
VA, for example. The following will serve:
- Arlington House: Robert E.
Lee's mansion at Arlington National Cemetery. Remember that Lee's
parlor looked toward the Washington monument, but it was a Cavalier
parlor nonetheless. The mansion is restored and comes complete with
Cavalier docents. While you are there, visit the grave of William
Jennings Bryan. Take Metro to the Arlington stop on the Blue Line.
Enter through the Cemetery Visitors Center.
- Belle Grove Plantation:
A plantation house in the Shennandoah Valley. Proves not all Cavalier
society was on the tidewater. Home restored to antebellum splendor
by the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Take I-66 west
from the beltway to its intersection with I-81. Go north to VA-627
exit and west to US-11. Go south on US-11 to Belle Grove.
- White House of the Confederacy:
Why not go to the very heart of it. Where Jefferson Davis lived. The
Museum of the Confederacy is right next door. Take I-95 south
to Richmond. Exit at Broad St. Westbound. Take the third right and
right again on Clay Street. This deadends into the Medical College
of Virginia Parking Garage. The Museum is on your right. 1201 E. Clay
- The James River
Plantations: Along the James River between Richmond and Williamsburg
are a whole series of plantation houses that are open to the public:
Berkeley, Brandon, North Bend, Tuckahoe,
and Shirley. Their dates range from the 17th century through the 1930s.
So, if you want an experience of historical breadth this may be the
place to go. Check the website for dates of each. Take I-95 south
to Richmond. Take I-264 east from just north of Richmond. Exit on
VA-5. Follow the signs.
- The Lincoln Memorial: This
is a monument to Lincoln the speaker. Take your time, read the speeches
on the walls. While you are here, look out on the reflecting pool.
Imagine you are Martin Luther King and 300,000 people are before you
as you deliver the "I Have a Dream" Speech. But don't let your focus
wander too much from Lincoln and the power of those words that wind
up on the walls of the temple to his memory. On the mall. You
can't miss it.
- Gettysburg: If you do not
get to go with the class and want to travel on your own, do so. Be
sure you spend time in the cemetery. Listen to those who stand reading
the speech. Learn what it has come to mean today. Take I-270 north
from the Beltway. At Frederick stay on the route which becomes US-15.
Take US-15 north to Gettysburg. Follow the signs to the battlefield.
- Ellis Island.
If your ancestors lived the life of European immigrants in the period
of labor reform, you will enjoy a trip to Ellis Island. If you
do not know if your ancestors passed through Ellis Island, search
the immigrant Website.
in New York Harbor. Begin your visit at Castle Clinton in
Battery Park at the bottom of Manhattan.
- Lower East Side Tenement Museum.
A wonderful museum that lets you walk in a tenement and learn about
the lives of people who lived there. in New York. Go to Orchard
and Delancy streets. Museum is at 108 Orchard St.
Women's Search for a Place in Public Life
- Sewall-Belmont House and
Museum. Washington headquarters for Alice Paul. Although Paul's
National Women's Party dates from the early 20th century, the museum
tells the story of women's efforts toward suffrage. Red Line to
Union Station. From the main entrance, turn LEFT and walk past the
Thurgood Marshall Federal Judicial Building to the intersection of
2nd Street, NE and Massachusetts Avenue. Turn RIGHT onto Second Street.
Travel for three blocks, passing the Senate parking lot and Hart Senate
Office Building on the right. The Sewall-Belmont House and Museum
is located just beyond the entrance to the Hart building.