Virginia Itinerary: George Washington’s Home Town
The Itinerary at a Glance
George Washington grew up in Fredericksburg, Virginia, one of America’s most historic and intriguing cities. He, Thomas Jefferson, James Monroe and even Abraham Lincoln all lived or visited here. This tour visits the newly reconstructed home that Washington knew as a child and adolescent as well as three gorgeous original homes and a colonial tavern that Washington knew well. A lively trolley tour of the town and fun dinner theater round out the experience.
3 Unique Experiences on This Trip
- George Washington’s Ferry Farm
- Historic Kenmore Plantation
- Chatham Manor
Duration: 3 Days
This Itinerary is Ideal For: All
George Washington’s Ferry Farm, a replica of the home Washington grew up in, has been recreated on its original foundation. A guided tour of the home and visit to the archaeology lab gives fascinating insight into the site both in colonial times and during the Civil War.
Begin your day with a visit to the Mary Washington House. In 1772, George Washington purchased this home for his mother, Mary Ball Washington. She spent her last 17 years in this comfortable white frame house. An avid gardener, Mrs. Washington could often be found tending to her gardens. According to legend, General Lafayette found her outside during the Revolution. Learn about this fascinating lady and take a stroll through her beloved gardens.
Nearby is the Hugh Mercer Apothecary, where Dr. Mercer served the citizens of Fredericksburg with medicines and treatments of the time. Leeches, lancets, snakeroot and crab claws made up just some of the remedies, and Mercer later served as a general alongside his friend George Washington in the Revolutionary War. Enjoy a colorful first-person tour of this reconstructed apothecary shop.
Conclude your day at Historic Kenmore Plantation. This Georgian-style brick mansion was home to George Washington’s sister—Betty Washington Lewis— and her husband. A colonial “gentry” home, Kenmore is famous for its intricate plasterwork ceilings, some of the finest of the colonial period. Tours through Kenmore’s rooms highlight its elegant architecture and history. The gardens were the inspiration for the first Historic Garden Week in Virginia in 1929. Their designs are based on popular styles of the colonial era.
After a fascinating archaeological discovery, a replica of the home George Washington grew up in has been recreated on its original foundation. Today, George Washington’s Ferry Farm offers guided tour of the home and visits to the archaeology lab to give fascinating insight into the site both in colonial times and during the Civil War.
Chatham Manor, a magnificent Georgian mansion completed in 1771, is the only house visited by George Washington, Thomas Jefferson and Abraham Lincoln. For more than a century it was a thriving plantation and home to the wealthy Fitzhugh family. It served as headquarters for Union generals during the Civil War, and the grounds were used as a hospital where Clara Barton and Walt Whitman were among nurses tending to the wounded.
What is a group tour without a live theater experience? Fredericksburg’s Riverside Center for the Performing Arts is a smash hit with locals and visitors alike. Great food accompanies first-rate productions by national professional touring shows as well as regional talent. You can also discover this historic town aboard a modern-day trolley on a tour of downtown and quaint neighborhoods. Beautiful homes (some dating to the colonial period), churches and stately downtown architecture line the streets of Fredericksburg.