Built by George Washington's sister Betty Washington Lewis and her husband, Fielding Lewis, this beautiful, Georgian-style, brick mansion reflects the pre-Revolutionary-War wealth and status of the Fredericksburg merchant.
During the Revolutionary War, Lewis loaned the state of Virginia money to build and support a gun factory in Fredericksburg. At the time of his death in 1781, he was still owed £7000 but it was never repaid. He also lost a great deal of money during the war because he was not able to carry on his mercantile business with England. However, his house still stands—with its elegant exterior and interior rooms adorned with colorful paint, wallpaper, and decorative plaster ceilings.
A visit to Kenmore starts in the Crowninshield Museum building (just to the left of the front gate). An interpreter will lead a 45-minute tour of the first floor of the house and the kitchen dependency. After the tour, visitors are welcome to enjoy the gardens and grounds (approximately 3 acres) at their leisure.
The Bissell Gallery in the museum facility features a new exhibit for 2013 - The Patriots Lewis: What Would You Give? The exhibit provides visitors with an overview of the Lewis family story, but also explains the immense sacrifice that they made to support the Revolution, asking visitors if they would have been willing to do the same.
Highlights on display include Fielding Lewis' original 1781 probate inventory, archaeological artifacts from Kenmore excavations, original 18th-century surveying equipment, and an exact replica Kenmore dollhouse.
Also featured is a new children’s interactive room with activities for young children and a gallery activity called “What Would You Give?” for slightly older children.
A convenient, money-saving, combination ticket is available for guests who want to visit both Kenmore and Ferry Farm.
Historic Kenmore is one of more than 120 historic sites participating in the 2013 Year of the Virginia Historic Home celebration. Visit the 2013 Year of the Virginia Historic Home website for more details.
Many events take place throughout the year at Kenmore and Ferry Farm. Subscribe to eNews to stay up to date.
You can also visit the events page to learn about
events that are coming soon.
The Curator at Kenmore has developed a special section of the website designed to keep visitors up to date with the ongoing refurnishing of Kenmore.
Volunteer Opportunities are available in a wide variety of positions throughout the Foundation.
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Last Updated: September 11, 2013