Happy New Year to you and yours, from the staff at The James Monroe Museum!
New Exhibit
On January 9, 2019 the new exhibit "James Monroe: the Library of a President," opens at The James Monroe Museum! The exhibit is curated by Heidi Stello, editorial assistant for the Papers of James Mon roe and Guide at The James Monroe Museum. Ms. Stello will present an accompanying lecture exploring the contents and significance of the personal library of the nation’s 5 th president (see details below under Upcoming Programs).

Monroe assembled a significant personal library during the course of his lifetime , featuring works on history, philosophy, law, politics, science, military science, religion, and the arts. The exhibit will include books owned by James Monroe, as well as those obtained by the Museum that are contemporary editions of works known to be in his personal collection.
Upcoming Programs
We have an exciting slate of programs for 2019, including historian John Ferling,
author of Apostles of Revolution as our 32nd Annual James Monroe Lecturer, our Presidents' Day Monroe Conversations, more opportunities to show off your drawing skills in "Sketchy History," History Trivia Nights, and much more! Make sure to keep an eye on our Calendar of Events throughout the year for program information.
Thursday, January 10, 7:00-8:30 PM
James Monroe: the Library of a President
Location: James Monroe Museum

Have you ever wondered what titles James Monroe would have kept on his bookshelf? We have! Please join us as we explore the contents and significance of Monroe's personal library through our newest exhibition, "James Monroe: the Library of a President,"  and its accompanying lecture by Heidi Stello, Editorial Assistant for the Papers of James Monroe.
Friday, February 1, 6:00-7:30 PM
First Friday Sketchy History
Location: James Monroe Museum

Join the fun at JMM’s family-friendly version of Win, Lose or Draw™. Categories used in the game are: historic people; historic objects or documents; historic events; and historic places. Bring along a team, or join one when you arrive. There is no admission fee to participate. There will be a cash bar, and free snacks.
Monday, February 18, 6:00-8:00 PM
Annual Presidents' Day Monroe Conversations
Location: Monroe Hall, Room 116,
University of Mary Washington
Join Ed Jones, former editor of the Free Lance-Star , for a "Meet the President" style interview with James Monroe (historical interpreter James "Jay" Harrison III)!

The program will be followed by a reception and opportunity to meet President Monroe.
Thursday, February 28, 7:00-8:30 PM
Black History Month Program - Florida Bound: James Monroe’s Slaves
Location: Monroe Hall, Room 116,
University of Mary Washington

In 1828 James Monroe sold of a group of enslaved people to Joseph Mills White in Florida, who owned the plantation Casa Bianca. Miranda Burnett and Martin Violette delved into records and found that Casa Bianca was not a typical plantation. The establishment of Casa Bianca in Jefferson County, Florida (near the town of Monticello) involved a President, two congressmen, a slave ship, and the richest man in America. However, the majority of the population living and working at Casa Bianca were enslaved men, women, and children. Burnett’s and Violette’s research uncovered the names of the families that Monroe sold to Colonel White, as well as details about their lives, successes, and losses after emancipation.

If you were unable to attend one of our lectures or special presentations, like our 31st Annual James Monroe Lecture, "Dirty, Nasty Politics in James Monroe's America" by Dr. Joanne Freeman, you can still enjoy them on our YouTube channel!

Curator's Corner

This month’s Curator’s Corner features a ca. 1794 skeleton clock owned by James Monroe. Purchased in Paris by Monroe during his first diplomatic mission to France, the skeleton clock includes metal weights, pulleys, and its original brass key. Mounted on a red marble base with arched brass supports, the clock was made by renowned French clock-maker Jean-Antoine Lepine. The enameled face, complete with brass Roman numerals, is inscribed "Lepine, Place des Victories, No. 12." The entire clock is protected by a glass dome.
This particular clock style is referred to as a "skeleton" clock because it was made to be displayed in a glass globe, thus exposing its intricate internal brass workings. Its maker, Jean-Antoine Lepine, (1720-1814) was a French craftsman active in Paris from 1744 to 1794. Renowned for his fine detailing and artistry, Lepine made clocks and watches for Louis XV, Louis XVI, and Marie Antoinette. Monroe's clock was also known as an "eight day" clock because it was wound every eight days - a long duration between windings being most desirable. Fine clocks were prized by the upper class, and Monroe owned several clocks and pocket watches during his lifetime. Come see our beautiful skeleton clock currently on exhibit at the Museum!
What's In Store?
Happy New Year from the Museum Store!
As you kick off the New Year we hope you take a moment to appreciate and enjoy the beauty all around us. As one of Virginia’s most historic cities there is plenty to enjoy here in Fredericksburg. Bundle up and head to town for a visit and browse the Museum Store. Remember, store shoppers are never charged admission to browse and shop.
If you are curious about the history of our lovely Fredericksburg, we have several books in the Store and online that would be perfect for learning about our fair city and state.
Fredericksburg: The Official Guide is a wonderful resource for visitors to town. It features information about 39 of our most notable historic sites, including The James Monroe Museum. Even locals will learn some new and interesting facts about Fredericksburg!
Fredericksburg: The Past and Presence of an Old Virginia Town visually grasps the special quality of life found in Fredericksburg. Nestled among sloping hills of the Rappahannock River, this town has retained its unique identity and way of life that many towns have lost due to rapid urban growth. The images illustrate how Fredericksburg is a surviving example of the kind of small town once familiar in Virginia. The guide is published by the Historic Fredericksburg Foundation, Inc.
For those planning a visit here and elsewhere in Virginia, we have The Virginia Presidents: A Travel and History Guide . The book focuses on the lives of the eight US Presidents who were born in Virginia and historic sites associated with their lives, including birthplaces and presidential homes (like James Monroe’s Highland ).
The Museum Store is are open from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM Monday through Saturday, and 1:00 PM until 4:00 PM on Sunday. As always, Friends of The James Monroe Museum receive a 20% discount on all merchandise. Not yet a member? Visit our website for information.
We hope to see you soon at the James Monroe Museum Store.
Happy New Year!
by Scott H. Harris, Executive Director,
University of Mary Washington Museums
Getting to know all about you . . .
You know the tune. "Getting to Know You" is perhaps the most familiar number from the 1951 Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The King and I.  In the show, Anna, a British schoolteacher who has been hired as a governess, sings the song to strike up a warm and affectionate relationship with the children (and wives) of the King of Siam.
The sentiment behind this charming ditty describes, to a degree, the missions of the University of Mary Washington Museums. James Monroe and Gari Melchers each compiled long and distinguished careers within their respective professions, but for contemporary audiences, “getting to know” them presents some challenges.

Friends of the
James Monroe Museum

Members of the Friends of The James Monroe Museum help make it possible for us to conserve the artifacts in our collection, create new exhibits for their display, and plan and implement public programming that provides opportunities to share the life and legacy of James Monroe with our community.

View the information about the benefits of membership, and learn how to become a Friend of The James Monroe Museum today!

Winter Hours and Closings

The Museum will shift to our winter schedule for the months of December, January, and February: Monday through Saturday 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM and Sunday 1:00 - 4:00 PM. The Museum will be closed on December 24 and 25, and January 1.
There's been an awful lot of rain in the region this year, but soon it's bound to turn to snow! For weather-related closures w e will post updates on our website and Facebook page. You can also consult local media outlets Fredericksburg.com and B101.5 .

The James Monroe Museum
908 Charles St.
Fredericksburg, VA 22401