Alexandria Archaeology Museum

Alexandria Archaeology Museum The Alexandria Archaeology Museum is a division of the City's Office of Historic Alexandria and is accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.
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A very important #FactCheckFriday
06/19/2020

A very important #FactCheckFriday

#FactCheckFriday Although dates of emancipation vary from state to state, June 19th has come to be celebrated throughout the United States as a day to commemorate the end of slavery. Why this date? In 1865, General Granger announced that the enslaved people in Texas were free. Texans began celebrating Juneteenth in 1866; Alexandrians have celebrated since 1889 on different days of the year and in different months. Celebrate this important date by immersing yourself in local African American history online: https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283 #HistoricALX2U

What exactly is a shoreline and where is it located? This seemingly simple question is actually very hard to answer. The...
06/17/2020

What exactly is a shoreline and where is it located? This seemingly simple question is actually very hard to answer. The shoreline is a fluid (pun intended) entity. On maps it is often depicted as a static line, unchanging in both time and space. In reality, a shoreline is shifting all of the time, subject to tidal forces, erosion, and precipitation. A mapmaker may depict a shoreline as representing any number of natural features—the bluff line, the high water mark, the low marker, and so on. Check out these brief research excerpts to further ponder the nature of shorelines in our city. https://www.alexandriava.gov/historic/info/default.aspx?id=114283 #WaterfrontWednesday #HistoricALX2U #WhatIsaShoreline

While a constant influence in Alexandria’s story past and present, the waterfront is also a natural feature that is alwa...
06/10/2020

While a constant influence in Alexandria’s story past and present, the waterfront is also a natural feature that is always shifting. Starting this #waterfrontwednesday and for the next few weeks, we are going to ponder the nature of shorelines. For Alexandria, the Potomac River is the boundary between our city, the District of Columbia and the state of Maryland. While a boundary, it also served as a connection to the rest of the world. This natural element was, and still is, a critical part of the local economy, to be developed and shaped to meet the financial interests of the landowners and city. https://www.alexandriava.gov/historic/info/default.aspx?id=114283

06/02/2020
ACT for Alexandria

Live stream available via ACT for Alexandria

Facing Racism. Demanding Change. Join us to honor George Floyd and share your voice in a virtual town hall.

AlexandriaVA.gov
06/01/2020

AlexandriaVA.gov

TOWN HALL :: City and community leaders will come together for the first in a series of virtual town halls on Tuesday, June 2, from 7 to 8:30 p.m., in the wake of the killing of George Floyd, a black man who died at the knee of a white police officer in Minneapolis on May 25. For more information, follow the link below. https://alexandriava.gov/115666

Hop on over to twitter to check out our cool "conference paper" on the future of the ships! Along with our friends over ...
05/29/2020

Hop on over to twitter to check out our cool "conference paper" on the future of the ships! Along with our friends over at the MAC Lab, we distilled a whole lot of information into 12 brief tweets #SaveOurFuttocks #SaveOurShips #HistoricALX2U #FactCheckFriday #MuseumFromHome

05/29/2020
#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday Newspaper advertisements also provide us with important information about Alexandria...
05/27/2020

#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday Newspaper advertisements also provide us with important information about Alexandria’s changing shoreline. A July 11, 1793 Virginia Gazette and Alexandria Advertiser notice describes the boundaries of a property south of the foot of Duke Street. This portion of Fleming’s wharf for sale “fronts the River Patowmack 55 ½ feet or thereabouts ... and extends back 110 feet or thereabouts.” Pairing this description with other documents that describe the eastern boundary of the property just to the west helps us understand how far land extended into the Potomac at this time and location. Historical research involves piecing together a lot of little nuggets of information to create a bigger picture of the past. Understanding when the Alexandria's shoreline was filled in will also help us better understand when the merchant ships were buried. For more information: https://www.alexandriava.gov/historic/info/default.aspx?id=114283

Join us Friday (5/29) as we join forces with the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab to discuss our ship preservati...
05/26/2020

Join us Friday (5/29) as we join forces with the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab to discuss our ship preservation project! Follow @AlexArchaeology & #IconArchTC on Twitter at 9:20 a.m. to learn more about the ships’ journey so far and our exciting plans for the future. #SaveOurFuttocks #ShipsOnShips

05/22/2020
May 22 Ask An Archaeologist: How to think about the ships.

"Why aren’t these boats in the water?": How do archaeologists think. Today three of our staff members use the historic ships to walk you through how archaeologists know what they know about the past. Be sure to get your questions in for next week!

We're dropping a new "Ask an Archaeologist" tomorrow (5/22) at 11 a.m. In this pre-recorded video, city archaeologists w...
05/21/2020

We're dropping a new "Ask an Archaeologist" tomorrow (5/22) at 11 a.m. In this pre-recorded video, city archaeologists will chat about ships and how archaeologists think. As always drop any questions you have in the comments, into our DMs, or shoot us an email. We'll answer all of these next week! #AlexandriaArchaeology #ArchaeologyCareers #HistoricALX2U #FactCheckFriday #wearegettingthehangofthisvideothing

#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday Court cases are also an important line of evidence for understanding how Alexandria’...
05/20/2020

#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday Court cases are also an important line of evidence for understanding how Alexandria’s shoreline changed in the 18th and 19th centuries. When disagreements arise over property boundaries, the courts often get involved to help solve the discrepancy. For example in the 1780s, Richard Arell disputed the location of the eastern boundary of Lot 69 where it abutted the western boundary of a City owned waterfront lot on Point Lumley. A few decades earlier the original eastern boundary of Lot 69 was the “very perpendicular and broken” bluffs above the Potomac. By the 1780s this bluff line appears to have been cut down and banked out, rendering the precise location of Lot 69’s eastern boundary unclear. This plat surveyed for Arell v. the Mayor of Alexandria shows both the public warehouse on the City owned waterfront lot and Lot 69. https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283 #MuseumFromHome

We're dropping a new "Ask an Archaeologist" tomorrow (5/15) at 11 a.m. In this pre-recorded video, city archaeologists w...
05/14/2020

We're dropping a new "Ask an Archaeologist" tomorrow (5/15) at 11 a.m. In this pre-recorded video, city archaeologists will chat about careers in the field. As always drop any questions you have in the comments, into our DMs, or shoot us an email. We'll answer all of these at the end of the month. #AlexandriaArchaeology #ArchaeologyCareers #HistoricALX2U #FactCheckFriday #wearegettingthehangofthisvideothing

#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday  Besides maps, archaeologists and historians use deeds and leases to better understa...
05/13/2020

#HistoricALX2U #WaterfrontWednesday Besides maps, archaeologists and historians use deeds and leases to better understand when and how Alexandria’s shoreline changed. Maps capture specific points in time and often depict multiple blocks or the entire waterfront area. Deeds and leases can capture more refined information, helping us more accurately pinpoint who initiated the alteration of a waterfront lot and when. However, deeds can be incredibly frustrating because many of those for shoreline lots from the 18th century simply describe the eastern boundary of the lot as being the river, with no indication of how far out the property extended. This vague description of a waterfront lot’s boundaries is typical for the time. For more information on Alexandria’s changing historic shoreline check out: https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283

05/08/2020
Alexandria’s shoreline has changed a great deal since the 18th century. Early residents filled in what was once a shallo...
05/06/2020

Alexandria’s shoreline has changed a great deal since the 18th century. Early residents filled in what was once a shallow cove between Oronoco and Duke Streets in order to make additional land and reach deeper water. So how do we know just how much land they made? One way is by comparing historic maps over time. This 1749 map shows the minimally altered shoreline of the city running in a gentle arc from West’s Point to the north down to Point Lumley. This 1798 map shows dramatic changes to the shoreline. In 50 years, Alexandrians created several blocks of new land along the Potomac River, changing both the physical landscape and the City’s economic prospects. To learn more about our historic shoreline research check out #waterfrontwednesday #HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome #PreservationMonth

https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283

Got some toilet paper rolls? Learn about columns and architecture!
05/04/2020

Got some toilet paper rolls? Learn about columns and architecture!

One of the most prominent features of some historic buildings is the column. But did you know that not all columns are the same? The most common are Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian. You can see these variety of styles at the Lyceum, Alfred Street Baptist Church, and the Masonic Memorial, just to name a few. Grab a toilet paper roll and construct some at home: https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283 #MakeItMonday #HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome #PreservationMonth

05/01/2020
Archaeology's got some deep roots in this city!
04/30/2020

Archaeology's got some deep roots in this city!

Check out those short shorts and huge mustaches for #ThrowbackThursday! Alexandria’s archaeology program began in the 1960s and 1970s and, though people may no longer be sporting these fashion statements, some things haven’t changed. Staff still work hard to preserve artifacts and their context (a specific location in horizontal and vertical space).Work is still guided by theoretically engaged research questions and a plan of action. Tomorrow begins #PreservationMonth and with it our first Facebook Live for #FactCheckFriday: “Ask an Archaeologist” with Alexandria Archaeology Museum. Find out more about the archaeology program (https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283) and tune in tomorrow at 11am EST. #HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome

While assessing waterlogged organic material from the Robinson Terminal South Site (44AX235), we found this wood and met...
04/29/2020

While assessing waterlogged organic material from the Robinson Terminal South Site (44AX235), we found this wood and metal gimlet or punch! This type of hand tool was likely used to drill small holes. It was also excavated in Feature 125, a roughly 42 by 25 foot, stone and wood foundation, along Wolfe Street. As a composite object made of both metal and wood, this object will require a little extra TLC during the conservation process to meet the needs of both material types. Learn more: https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283 #waterfrontwednesday #HistoricALX2U

#Terminologytuesday Ever heard of a tuyere? Chances are you’ve used one with a woodstove or an air mattress. A tuyere is...
04/28/2020

#Terminologytuesday Ever heard of a tuyere? Chances are you’ve used one with a woodstove or an air mattress. A tuyere is the nozzle of a bellows or blowing engine through which air is blown into a smelter, furnace, forge, or fireplace. The word comes from the French, tuyau (pipe). They can vary in size from enormous ones used in industrial applications to much smaller ones like this one found in a brick lined well on the City Hall Market Block (44AX94).

04/27/2020

For #PreservationMonth and #FactCheckFriday we're trying something new! Join us every Friday in May for Ask an Archaeologist. We will tackle all things archaeology, starting THIS Friday (5/1) with some of the most common questions we've gotten over the years.

While assessing waterlogged organic material from the Robinson Terminal South Site (44AX235), we came across this amazin...
04/22/2020

While assessing waterlogged organic material from the Robinson Terminal South Site (44AX235), we came across this amazing wooden trowel! It was excavated within Feature 125, a roughly 42 by 25 foot, stone and wood foundation, along Wolfe Street. The foundation was likely for a dwelling and dates to the 18th century or early 19th century. #waterfrontwednesday #HistoricALX2U #MuseumAtHome

Fun activity included!
04/20/2020

Fun activity included!

For this week’s #MakeItMonday, we’re talking toilets! Before indoor plumbing, chamber pots and privies were used. It wasn’t until the start of the Alexandria Water Company in 1852 that some affluent Alexandrians were able to install indoor plumbing in their houses. City archaeologists have found many examples of chamber pots dating from the mid-18th to late-19th century that range in style and decoration. Carefully piecing them back together can give clues to how many people were living in a home, how much money they may have had, and when indoor plumbing came to the area.

Put your artifact mending skills to the test by decorating your own chamber pots and then trying to piece them back together again. Just remember, don’t use them before you do! And as a bonus, play our never-before-seen “Spot the Pot” game:https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283
#HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome #SpotThePot

We
04/20/2020

We

For this week’s #MakeItMonday, we’re talking toilets! Before indoor plumbing, chamber pots and privies were used. It wasn’t until the start of the Alexandria Water Company in 1852 that some affluent Alexandrians were able to install indoor plumbing in their houses. City archaeologists have found many examples of chamber pots dating from the mid-18th to late-19th century that range in style and decoration. Carefully piecing them back together can give clues to how many people were living in a home, how much money they may have had, and when indoor plumbing came to the area.

Put your artifact mending skills to the test by decorating your own chamber pots and then trying to piece them back together again. Just remember, don’t use them before you do! And as a bonus, play our never-before-seen “Spot the Pot” game:https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283
#HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome #SpotThePot

A big THANK YOU to everyone who generously supported the Freedom House Preservation Fund!
04/16/2020

A big THANK YOU to everyone who generously supported the Freedom House Preservation Fund!

Thank you all for your generous support of the Freedom House Preservation Fund - we raised $12,813 plus an additional $850 in prizes, making our #Spring2ACTion grand total $13,663! Though we may be physically distanced right now, we are as committed as ever to interpreting the complex and important history of this site. We are working hard to make the space more accessible to all, research the stories of the enslaved people who passed through this building, and serve the community in new and meaningful ways. #ThankYou

“Thank you for including both the historical context and first person accounts. It would be impossible to not be deeply ...
04/15/2020

“Thank you for including both the historical context and first person accounts. It would be impossible to not be deeply moved by it,” shares a recent visitor to the Freedom House museum. This site is an experience like none other. It challenges long-held beliefs and opens eyes to both past wrongs and modern injustices. Another visitor reflected, “This historic structure is important to show the world the inhumanity and brutality of enslaving others.” Help us preserve this important site for future generations. https://www.spring2action.org/p2p/140491/team-freedom-house

We are closing in on $10,000. Help Historic Alexandria reach its goal for the Freedom House preservation fund so we can ...
04/15/2020

We are closing in on $10,000. Help Historic Alexandria reach its goal for the Freedom House preservation fund so we can continue to do important research like this! https://www.spring2action.org/p2p/140491/team-freedom-house

#Spring2ACTion A valuable source for studying the domestic slave trade are government records like the Census. The 1830 US Census recorded 147 people at the Franklin and Armfield slave pen on June 1, 1830, including two white males, likely employees of the firm, and 145 enslaved people. When combined with evidence from newspapers and shipping records, it is possible these enslaved men, women, and children were held here temporarily before marching overland in a coffle to the Deep South. Visit our Freedom House website (https://bit.ly/3bd8OvP) for more information on this research in progress. Join us as we work to bring more of these stories to light: https://bit.ly/3c6P9O5

One of the most useful sources for doing historical maritime research are local newspapers. Then as now, newspapers repo...
04/15/2020

One of the most useful sources for doing historical maritime research are local newspapers. Then as now, newspapers reported all kinds of information, ranging from national and international news, to local rumor and opinion, to advertisements. From a surviving ship manifest, we know that Franklin and Armfield sent 92 enslaved people from Alexandria to New Orleans on the Brig Uncas in fall of 1833. Using newspaper accounts, we can then track the movements of this ship as it traveled south. This detailed view of one voyage allows us to better understand the strategies and logistics used by a major firm profiting from the horrors of the domestic slave trade. #waterfrontwednesday #HistoricALX2U To learn more about this ongoing research check outhttps://www.alexandriava.gov/uploadedFiles/historic/info/freedomhouse/TrackingtheBrigUncasInHistoricNewspapers.pdf

Donate to preserve the Freedom House Museum: https://www.spring2action.org/p2p/140491/team-freedom-house

Many cabinets of curiosity displayed archaeological "wonders"
04/13/2020

Many cabinets of curiosity displayed archaeological "wonders"

For this week’s #MakeItMonday curate your own exhibit at home! Today’s museums have their roots in 17th century cabinets of curiosities, “Wunderkammer” in German. Mostly for the elite, these spaces contained select rare, odd, or interesting artifacts sometimes accompanied by interpretive labels. Museums evolved and became more accessible to the general public. Alexandria’s first museum opened in 1811 and displayed “relics of the greatest Alexandrians,” including George Washington’s clock, portraits of Jefferson and Lafayette, and Revolutionary War flags. Make your own: https://www.alexandriava.gov/114283 #HistoricALX2U #MuseumFromHome

Post a picture in the comments or use #HistoricALX2U to show us your unique creation!

Address

105 North Union Street #327
Alexandria, VA
22314

King Street Trolley, DASH bus and the Water Taxi from National Harbor

Opening Hours

Wednesday 10:00 - 15:00
Thursday 10:00 - 15:00
Friday 10:00 - 15:00
Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 13:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(703) 746-4399

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The Alexandria Archaeology Museum is dedicated to preserving and studying Alexandria’s rich archaeological heritage and fostering within residents and visitors a connection between the past and present while inspiring a sense of stewardship and adventure.


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Happy Birthday: Dorothy Annie Elizabeth Garrod, CBE, FBA (5 May 1892 – 18 December 1968) was a British archaeologist who was the first woman to hold an Oxbridge chair, partly through her pioneering work on the Palaeolithic period. To see more go to: https://www.facebook.com/sciencerhymes/
Archaeology in the River Duero Valley. Cambridge Scholars Publishing. Editor(s): Jose Carlos Sastre Blanco, Óscar Rodríguez-Monterrubio, Patricia Fuentes Melgar:
I would like to request a brochure on The Alexandria Archeology Museum. My address is: 308 W. Elm St, Warren, Arkansas 71671. I hope to hear from you real soon! John Huerta 308 W. Elm St. Warren, Arkansas 71671
Boy scout troop 368 would like to thank and highly recommend the great team of archaeologists, Mr Garrett and Miss Emma for teaching our scouts about archeology. We had such an amazing time. I cannot believe how much we learned by hands on in 1 day. Both Garrett and Emma were exceptional in their knowledge and patience explaining everything. And answering every question we had. They also provided us with a scavenger hunt of old town alexandria ( done by an eagle scout I might add) and we had a great time exploring the city. If you have a scout troop looking for a great merit badge to work now, here it is. Contact Mr Garrett and he will hook you up! And don't forget ms emma, I want to see what you uncover under that rock!!!