“While there is much to admire in the external beauties of Arlington, the chief attractions are the pictures within, and the precious relics of the great Patriot which are preserved there.”- Historian Benson Lossing, 1853
Custis first christened the property Mount Washington, later renaming it Arlington after an early Custis family plantation. Modeled after a Greek temple by architect George Hadfield, Custis turned the mansion into a museum for his “Washington Treasury,” a collection of Mount Vernon and Washington artifacts he delighted in showing to people. Among these artifacts were Washington and Custis family portraits and engravings, Washington China, the tents Washington used during the Revolutionary War, the lantern that hung in the mansion center hall at Mount Vernon, and, most important, Washington’s deathbed. Custis himself was an amateur artist who created plays, songs, and paintings to honor George Washington’s memory.
Last updated: June 28, 2021