YORKTOWN, Va., June 22, 2020 – This Fourth of July, salute the 244th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence during Liberty Celebration at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.
The American Revolution Museum at Yorktown is scheduled to reopen on Wednesday, June 24, with adjustments to operations and access to outdoor living-history areas and gallery exhibits so visitors can enjoy the museum experience while following new safety protocols and social-distancing procedures.
From 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on July 4, visitors can enjoy interpretive programs, artillery demonstrations and learn about the challenges that faced our nation’s founders, including those who signed the Declaration of Independence, as well as those for whom the new nation’s rights of freedom and liberty did not apply.
Indoors and out, enjoy these liberty experiences:
— See a rare July 1776 broadside of the Declaration of Independence duplicated in mass to spread the word of liberty from town to town featured in an immersive gallery exhibit surrounded by signatures of this famous document’s signers.
— Catch “Liberty Fever” – the museum’s introductory film, shown throughout the day in the main theater.
— Take part in patriotic programming in outdoor re-creations of a Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm.
‘Forgotten Soldier’ Special Exhibition Extended Through July 8
As Patriots fought for the freedom of a nation, thousands of men, women and children remained enslaved. “Forgotten Soldier,” a special exhibition reopening for a two-week extended showing through July 8, explores personal stories of African-American soldiers and their contributions toward establishing an independent nation. Take in rare artifacts and documents – some side-by-side together for the first time since 1783 – and compelling art that traces the experiences of enslaved and free African Americans on both sides of the Revolutionary War. View an original work by Titus Kaphar, American contemporary artist and 2018 MacArthur Fellow whose work reconfigures subjects in art history, often reinserting African Americans into familiar narratives of the past. This 3D sculpture invites visitors to “shift their gaze” or look at history through a new lens to contemplate these soldiers often overlooked in historical accounts. The project is in partnership with the Williamsburg Contemporary Art Center.
Outdoor Living-History Experiences at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown
From 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., visitors can experience the life of 18th-century soldiers and citizens in outdoor re-creations of a Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm.
At the Continental Army encampment, historical interpreters describe and depict daily routines of American soldiers, with demonstrations of musket and artillery firing, 18th-century surgical and medical practices, and role of the quartermaster in managing troop supplies. In the artillery amphitheater, feel the thunder of a cannon blast as historical interpreters fire a salute to our nation’s founders. Artillery demonstrations will begin at 11 a.m. and 4:15 p.m., and a program on feeding the troops will take place at 2 p.m.
Throughout the day on the re-created Revolution-era farm, visitors can learn how farmers during the Revolution became more self-sufficient by growing and processing flax, cotton and wool for homespun cloth. Visitors can see what is cooking in the farm kitchen as historical interpreters prepare a variety of 18th-century dishes on the hearth, using historical recipes from Virginia’s earliest cookbooks, as well as foods of enslaved people and the evolution of period dishes through cultural influences. Food preparation is for demonstration purposes only.
“Liberty Celebration,” funded in part by the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, Inc. Annual Fund, is included with museum admission: $15.25 for adults, $7.75 for youth ages 6-12 and free for children under age 6. A value-priced combination ticket with Jamestown Settlement, a living-history museum of 17th-century Virginia, is $27.50 for adults and $13.50 for ages 6-12. Residents of York County, James City County and the City of Williamsburg, including William & Mary students, receive complimentary admission with proof of residency.
About the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown
The American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, located on Route 1020 near the Colonial Parkway in Yorktown, tells the story of the nation’s founding, capturing the transformational nature and epic scale of the Revolution and its relevance today.
Indoor gallery exhibits and films are open 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily through August 15, with living-history areas open 10 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Parking at the museum is free for museum visitors. On July 4, the Yorktown Trolley will offer free shuttle service to Historic Yorktown from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
For more information about “Liberty Celebration” and safety and social-distancing protocols at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, visit jyfmuseums.org.