A Master Plan for George Washington Birthplace National Monument, Virginia
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The following objectives will guide the management of the National Monument.

Bottle seals unearthed here.

Resource Conservation

1. Conduct the historical, archeological, and natural history research necessary to guide the interpretation and preservation of the Washington farm and the selection of sites for development.

2. Stabilize and preserve the ruins of historic structures and, if considered desirable, reconstruct certain historic structures as evidence of the presence here of the Washington family and George Washington.

3. Continue to preserve and manage the Memorial House as an example of a self-sufficient farm home of the first half of the 18th century.

4. Preserve and restore to the extent practical the historic ground cover and land uses of the farm during the historical period commemorated.

5. Preserve by acquisition, scenic easement, or other means the neighboring properties essential to maintaining the quality of the historical and natural scene.

6. Restrict new developments to sites which intrude the least on the birthplace site and the John Washington burial ground.

7. Develop and maintain historical collections, including artifacts and documentary materials, relevant to the interpretive theme, the significant values, and the research needs of the National Monument.

8. Cooperate with local organizations and State and other Federal agencies in preservation and conservation programs that will help the National Park Service protect the historic and scenic resources of the Washington farm.

A place setting in the Memorial House.


1. Interpret Washington as a member of a moderately well-to-do family on a Tidewater Virginia farm. Emphasis should be placed on the English inheritance, early beginnings in America, family events up to Washington's birth on February 22, 1732, and his brief years in this environment. Important secondary themes are 18th-century farming here and that natural history which is relevant to the Washington story.

2. Construct an interpretive facility near a point on Popes Creek southwest of the Memorial House, and develop a comprehensive interpretive program that will effectively convey to visitors through a variety of media the essential elements of the Washington story.

3. Improve methods and facilities for the initial contact with visitors.

4. Present the Memorial House and the Colonial Kitchen as period exhibits in themselves.

5. Continue personal interpretive services at the Memorial House and on the grounds to the greatest extent possible as a means of assuring a satisfactory experience for the majority of visitors.

6. Interpret natural history resources chiefly as they relate to the 18th-century scene that Washington knew.

7. Encourage educational groups and organizations to visit the National Monument by offering special services and programs.

8. Continue the presentation of programs about the National Monument and the National Park Service to schools, historical and conservation organizations, and other local groups through such media as off-site talks, educational radio and television, and traveling exhibits.

Visitor Use

1. Develop the National Monument as primarily a day-use area by providing the picnicking facilities and other services needed by visitors at a relatively isolated park.

2. Encourage the use of the monument's natural features by developing walking trails and sitting areas. The trails should lead to the shores of Popes Creek and the Potomac, passing through the woods and near the marshes.

3. Support the efforts of nearby communities and State and other Federal agencies to provide adequate visitor facilities for active recreation, especially swimming. Programs at the National Monument should emphasize visitor participation in interpretive, cultural, and quiet outdoor recreation activities.

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Last Updated: 16-Apr-2010