Replica of George Washington's boyhood home open to public in Virginia
STAFFORD COUNTY, Va. (WJLA) - A replica of George Washington’s boyhood home is now officially open to the public in Stafford County, Virginia.
Just off Route 3, the multi-million dollar project is turning Ferry Farm into a living museum, and shining a spotlight on what shaped our first president into a man.
"So you'll be able to see the lifestyle he lived and what his daily life was like," said Meghan Budinger, director of Curatorial Operations.
Washington and his family moved to Ferry Farm when he was 6 years old, and it was home to the family until 1772.
Now for the first time, WJLA is showing you an exclusive look inside a replica of the Washington house.
"People have been searching for the house since the 1970s," said David Muraca, director of archaeology. "The question was can we find it, and it took us a long time."
A team of archaeologists performed large-scale excavations and found the home's original site based off of a computer program.
"It said that there were three houses out here and we picked the one we thought was most likely to be the Washington house, and it turns out the third house we dug turned out to be the Washington house," Muraca said.
Construction started three years ago. The foundation, framing and the house is based on 18th century methods.
Inside, our tour began in the parlor, better known as a family room.
"This fireplace would have heated the entire house. It would have been their kitchen and it would have been where the family gathered," Budinger said.
The house will be filled with reproduced pieces of furniture, similar to what was found in a probate inventory.
“So everything in the house is a reproduction. It’s a new piece of furniture, but it was made from an original 18th century example we identified through archaeology research and documentary research,” Budinger said.
Since the home is a replica, visitors will get a full interactive experience. Windows will be open on a beautiful day, you will be able to open drawers and cabinets and even sit on the furniture.
“We will have candles lit and we will have fires in the fireplace, it will be an all-sensory experience,” Muraca said. “We will use it as a stage to teach people about the early years about George Washington.”
The tour will take you room to room, and upstairs you can look into Washington's bedroom, which overlooks the Rappahannock River.
"When you come to this house you will see a very early 18th century home," Budinger said.
A home now helping tell the full Washington story.