George Washington Birthplace National Monument
(Front):Historic Kenmore and George Washington's Ferry
For George Washington, Fredericksburg was "...the place of my growing infancy." The old town on the Rappahannock River remained his home until he moved permanently to Mt. Vernon after the death of his brother Lawrence. Ferry Farm was his inheritance under his father's will, as Mt. Vernon was Lawrence's.
Ferry Farm is the setting of Parson Weems' tales of young George Washington - the honest boy who could not tell as lie (about cutting down the cherry tree) and the strong young man who tossed a stone (not a silver dollar!) across the Rappahannock River. Cherry trees still grow there and the river still runs past.
Washington's mother Mary lived in Fredericksburg until her death in 1789, managing the Ferry Farm until she moved into a house in town closer to her daughter and son-in-law, Betty and Fielding Lewis. A close friend and advisor of Washington, Fielding Lewis staked his personal fortune on a gunnery of Fredericksburg which supplied arms to help win the American Revolution.
The Lewises' magnificent house, known today as Kenmore, was built in 1775. It contains the most elaborate decorative plaster work of the colonial period. This is a dramatic contrast to the simple charm of Washington's mother's house only a few blocks away.
These historic houses and Ferry Farm, lying opposite old Fredericksburg along the banks of the Rappahannock, help tell the story of the Fredericksburg boy who became the "Father of His Country."
These sites are open to the public.
(Back):George Washington Birthplace National Monument
America's first and greatest hero, George Washington, was born on his father's Popes Creek tobacco plantation in 1732. He would spend his formative years learning the culture of the Virginia aristocracy, experiencing the community of master, servants, and slaves, and absorbing the legacy of three generations of Washingtons before him in America.
Located in the Northern Neck of Virginia, 38 miles east of Fredericksburg on Virginia Route 3, George Washington Birthplace National Monument preserves the heart of Augustine Washington's plantation, the 17th century homesite of the immigrant John Washington, and the Washington Family Burial Ground.
First marked in 1815, George Washington's Birthplace contains a Memorial House and dependencies constructed in 1931 near the site of the original Washington home. Here, in the peace and beauty of this place untouched by time, the stanch character of our hero comes to imagination.