Tuesday, September 23, 2008

George Washington Slept Here

I decided to follow in the footsteps of George Washington and go shopping in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia.
On the east coast, many historic sites make the claim that “George Washington was here,” but in Alexandria, Virginia, it’s absolutely, positively true!

Founded in the 1700s as a Colonial seaport, Alexandria was
George Washington’s stomping ground.
While living at his Mount Vernon plantation outside of town, Washington spent a good deal of time in Alexandria.

He bought his medicines at the Stabler-Leadbeater apothecary, danced with Martha at Gadsby's Tavern; worshipped at Christ Church, and plotted the American Revolution in various local homes and taverns.

No FAKE gas lights here!Recognized for its outstanding examples of early American architecture, Alexandria’s Old Town district includes more than 4,000 historic buildings that span centuries -- and styles.

Some structures were private homes...
Others were shops...
Or warehouses.

The John Douglas Brown house was built in 1775. Unlike some neighboring homes, it retains the original wide pine siding painted oxide red.

History buffs delight in the fact that later additions have not been disguised and remain visible for study. The side yard had been the subject of several archeological digs.

Hungry for history?

Gadsby's Tavern (no photo) is the only remaining colonial tavern in Alexandria but there are lots of other places to sip and sup. The Union Street Public House is an example of
architectural recycling. Originally a shipping office for a munitions company, it now bangs out tasty meals and mugs of hearty beer.
This anchor, located at water's edge at the foot of Alexandria’s main commercial thoroughfare, King Street, commemorates the founding of the Old Dominion Boat Club in 1880. The club still maintains boat slips and a Members Only restaurant.

Note the basement windows in the photo below. Many of the streets in Alexandria have been raised (as is the case here) or lowered through the centuries to try to steer storm surges from flooding area buildings.

I hope you've enjoyed touring the streets where George Washington once strolled. Our last stop is the main dock area. In addition to shops, restaurants and a food court, here is where you can catch a water taxi to DC or a sightseeing cruise.


Becky said...

Hi Barbara,
I see we share a love for history. I hope one day that you will visit our charming town of Eufaula where we have an annual pilgrimage. Southern Lady magazine did a lovely article a few years ago on Eufaula. Southern charm just drips there.
Even as a Yankee they are as sweet as the tea they drink to me.

Penny @ Lavender Hill Studio said...

What a wonderful city! I am putting that on my list of places to visit. Thanks for the tour Barbara!

NeereAnDear said...

When I lived In Northern Virginia I loved perusing the streets of Old Towne... some fabulous restaurants and beautiful architecture...

Thank you for bringing me back to one of my favorite places to spend a fabulous day..

Thank you for the memories



Pat@Back Porch Musings said...

Thank you Barbara. J and I would thoroughly enjoy! The photos are wonderful.

Debbies-English-Treasures said...

Hello Barbara...

Sorry for not commenting on your last post! ... as I have been away!
I`m sorry to hear about your book not being published!
If it is some type of comfort (or maybe not, but I hope it is!)... I was going to have my own shop...which Is something that I always wanted!
But... my businness advisor... said that now isn`t a good time for it! (due to the unsettle world economy)
And that maybe I should try in the next 6 to 12 months!
I was so upset... but I now value his honesty... because if I got ahead in having my own shop... I probably wouldn`t have suceeded and end up in a lot of debt!!!
So now... I have a little office/storage room instead... so I can work from there on my website and I`m hoping that local residents can buy my things through the website and collect from my office!
...All I`m trying to say... is that maybe some good will come out of your situation!
I truly hope so!
I`m off now... But, will come back soon to see how you are doing!
Kisses & Hugs
Debbie Moss


Joy Zaczyk said...

So much history in one town. What an insight into the past!

Debbie @ ribbonwoodcottage.blogspot.com said...

Hi Barbara, I was laying in bed this morning wandering how you were moving ahead with your book. I have had some thoughts and was thinking there has to be a way to get your work published! Perhaps something creative that would show the powers that be just how popular your work is. I know that a musician that has written a song is not happy or fulfilled till the song is 'song.' Surely we can all rally and put positive pressure on those who can say 'yes!' I did vote, but feel more could be done!

GeorgiaPeachez said...

Luuuv Old Town! One of my favorite places to go in Dec for christmas shopping. Really gets me in the zone! xo, suzy

Sweet Cottage Dreams said...

Barbara, thank you for sharing these pics with us! I have never been there and have to add this to my "must go" places.

Great houses!!!!


Lisa said...

What a nice historic tour. Great photos too.

Hope all is well.

rose_michelle said...

How beautiful! I love to visit historical places, the southern plantations are my favorites.

My Petite Maison said...

Hi Barbara,
Thank you for the tour. I love history so much and going along and learning new facts ~ It looks beautiful there, I am adding it to my places to visit list.

Barbara said...

How beautiful and how very American looking. Surprise. Except for teh harbour which could be anywhere.

Kathryn Bechen Ink said...

I love it and will put it on my list of places to see! Hope all is well. Kathryn :)

Fifi Flowers said...

Great photos... love Alexandria... quaint and charming and full of history!

Susie Q said...

I love this place...we were there this past June and how we loved it. I posted all sorts of photos of Old Town and just had the best time taking those pictures. It is a most lovely spot. I enjoyed seeing all your photos Barbara.

Marie Antionette said...

I have really enjoyed this.I just love the pictures and hoe you described everything.I certainly would love to visit there.I love the side of that house,the streets and walkway.Hugs Marie Antionette

Mary said...

What a beautiful city! I hope to visit one day -- it is exactly the sort of architecture and history I love.

Maya said...

Thanks! I think I just discovered a very charming seaside town (goes on my list too).

FrenchGardenHouse said...


I love this city, from what I can see of it. This is what CA is missing, history and more charm!
Thanks for the tour,
xo Lidy

Sandy said...

What fabulous photos! We took our boys to Alexandria and DC last spring and we just loved it!
Hope you are having a fabulous week.

CIELO said...

Thanks for the lovely tour.... I was right there by you... :)

Have a great evening, Barbara!


Julie said...

Where have you been girl? It is time to come back to the blog to say hi! Great tour BTW!

Sanya Pallos said...

I just LOVE this post!!! Virginia is full of amazing historical places and your photos are like eye candy to me. Have you made it down to Old Fredericksburg yet? It is a fabulous town that I think you would really enjoy.

Thank you for sharing!

Kim~"HomeIsWhereTheHeartIs" said...

Wow, your pictures are amazing!