A Writer's Journey

October 10, 2013

Historical Places Month, Part 1: Williamsburg

Filed under: off topic — mackenziew @ 1:00 am
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I’ve decided to dedicate October to Historical Places! And I’m going to start with Williamsburg, Virginia.

The capital of Virginia from 1699 until Thomas Jefferson moved it to Richmond in 1780, Williamsburg was a major city in colonial times. And played an important role in the Revolution, though most focus centers on Boston. For the call for Independence came from Virginia, from the House of Burgesses in Williamsburg. The College of William and Mary is also located in the city and after the capital was moved, the city transformed into a sleepy college town.

In the early 1900s, a new rector came to Bruton Parish Church within Williamsburg. He looked around and saw that many houses still dated back to colonial times but were starting to disappear as modernization took over. So he came up with an idea—buying the houses and preserving them as a living museum. He appealed first to automaker Henry Ford but the man was not interested. But oil tycoon and philanthropist John D. Rockefeller was. Rockefeller wired the money and the houses were bought as they went on sale.

And so the living museum grew and grew, house by house. It is now Colonial Williamsburg. My family loves to go down there for vacations. We love to walk amongst the old houses. To see the exhibits and attend the different events. Some of my personal favorite events have been: an audience with Lafayette, an audience with the presidents (Washington, Jefferson, Madison and FDR), and caroling in the courthouse. I’ve loved learning new things down there.

So go down to Williamsburg! You will not regret it, I promise.


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