Morristown National Historical Park and the Washington Association of New Jersey are pleased to announce the Grand Opening of the Discover History Center and the completion of the Military Gallery at Washington’s Headquarters Museum on Presidents Day weekend, February 17-19, 2018. The result of nearly a decade of work, the new Discover History Center (DHC) is a $2.2 million dollar project for the 21st century. The Washington Association and its fundraising efforts included gifts from members, friends, and corporations, contributing $1.8 million dollars to the project, enabling its completion.
The immersive, interactive, exhibits will engage visitors of all ages with hands-on and multi-media experiences to explore the stories of Morristown, the Continental Army, General Washington, and Continental Congress during the years that “tried men’s souls.”
The galleries feature many never-before seen artifacts, interactive activities geared towards children and adults, and five new videos to experience. Visitors can step into the footsteps of a Continental soldier for inspection, lift a musket to feel its weight, and walk past snow drifts and into a re-created log hut. On the museum’s main level, the military gallery now features an interactive timeline of the Revolutionary Era. A redesigned mini-theater provides space for the park’s introductory film, uniform signage, and audio-description and listening devices ensure accessibility for all visitors to the museum.
The official opening ceremony will be Saturday, February 17th at 10 am in the Washington’s Headquarters Museum Auditorium, 30 Washington Place, Morristown, New Jersey.
The weekend will feature a variety of activities in addition to the new exhibits:
*The Ford Mansion, used by General Washington as his headquarters, will be open for self-guided tours. Visitors may enjoy colonial toys, games, and riddles in the mansion.
*In the Museum, representatives from the Washington Association, Crossroads of the American Revolution, Morris County Tourism Bureau, and the Museum of Early Trades and Crafts will have special exhibits and make presentations each day.
*Musician Linda Russell will perform the hammered dulcimer, playing historic music of the time period.
*The 2nd New Jersey Regiment, Helms’ Company reenactment group will represent the soldiers who camped at Morristown, and have a variety of uniforms, weapons, and equipment on display.
*Photo-Artist Xiomaro will discuss a new exhibit of his work on display in the museum. Gallery walks will take occur each day at 1 pm, and a selfie station is available.
During the three-day opening event, free timed tickets will be issued to visitors for entrance into the Discover History Center exhibit at the museum information desk on a first come, first serve basis. Visitors may enjoy the other activities while waiting for their timed admission into the exhibit.
The museum will also be open on Tuesday, February 20th and will then resume its normal weekly visitor hours of Wednesday-Sunday, 9:30 am to 5 pm. During museum operating hours, guided tours of the Ford Mansion are available by timed tickets available at the museum information desk. Admission to the Washington’s Headquarters Museum and Ford Mansion tours is free to the public.
For more information about this event please visit our website at www.nps.gov/morr or call the museum at 973-539-2016 x-210.