Alexandria Brings PBS’ Mercy Street to Life for Season Two

As fans of the PBS Civil War-era drama Mercy Street anticipate the show’s return for a second season on January 22, 2017, at 8:00 p.m. ET, historic Alexandria, Virginia announces 40 new tours, exhibits and events inspired by the series.

Mercy Street, PBS’ first original American drama in a decade, is inspired by real events of Civil War Alexandria. Alexandria celebrates the national spotlight on its history by presenting more than 50 visitor experiences for Mercy Street fans, including 40 new offerings. Fans are invited to visit the city’s historic sites to enjoy new exhibits and events inspired by the series, with several that focus on Civil War-era cultural customs including food, fashion and music. Uncover the real people behind the characters on the show, the realities of Civil War medicine, the changing roles for women, and the breakthrough experience of enslaved African-Americans claiming their freedom.

season_2_key_art_540x720_72_rgbImage Credit: PBS

HIGHLIGHTS OF NEW 2017 VISITOR EXPERIENCES:

  • Carlyle House events including “Gala in the Garden” with MERCY STREET producers (May 20), “Love and Romance Between the Lines” open house event (Feb. 11) with historic chocolate treats and reenactors playing real-life love birds Frank Stringfellow and Emma Green, and “Espionage Tea” (June 4) challenging guests to see if they are as clever as Frank Stringfellow.
  • Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum’s “Apothecary of Mercy Specialty Tour” (starts Jan. 8) and “This Terrible Disease” exhibit (opens Jan. 13) featuring prescriptions and remedies sold to the Union Commissary Department and to the contraband population and civilian residents in Alexandria during the Civil War.
  • Civil War-inspired food events including “Civil War Wine Dinner with Gray Ghost Winery” (Jan. 26) and “Heflebower’s Cobblers and Cocktails” (Feb. 3), both at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, and lectures at the Lyceum including programs with the authors of “Food in the Civil War Era” (Jan. 12) and “Starving the South” (Feb. 23).
  • “Mercy Me! Get into Character” Costume Station (Jan. 22-Dec. 31), at the Alexandria Visitor Center and select Mercy Street-inspired events, offering fans the chance to try on a recreation of a Civil War-era dress or surgeon’s coat with an invitation to share their photo on social media with hashtag #MercyStreetPBS.
  • New ways to explore the African-American experience including “Freedom’s Fight in Alexandria Walking Tour” (starts Feb. 11) by Manumission Tour Company and Alexandria Black History Museum events including “Sweet as Sin” lecture and candy tasting (Feb. 18), “Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs: Black Women Food and Power” lecture and book signing (March 25) and the art exhibit “Before the Spirits are Swept Away: African American Historic Site Paintings by Sherry Z. Sanabria” (continues through May 2017).
  • Lee-Fendall House events including two special tours of the museum, “This Tide of the Wounded” and “From Slavery to Freedom” (Jan. 21, Feb. 4 and Feb 18), and the lecture “James Green and Thomas Day: Furniture, Family, and Race in 19th Century Virginia” (March 18).
  • Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site’s “U.S. Colored Troops Living History Encampment” (Apr. 8) portraying the history, training and solider life of African-American units associated with the Civil War defenses of Washington and “Fort Ward Tour and Civil War Concert” (May 20) with a solider-led tour of Fort Ward and period music by the Federal City Brass Band.

Ten visitor experiences are returning for a second year, including the top-visited Mercy Street-inspired exhibit, “Who These Wounded Are: The Extraordinary Stories of the Mansion House Hospital” at Carlyle House, once the Green family home adjacent to the Mansion House hospital, featuring an interpretation of period hospital rooms and doctor/officer housing, plus stories of nurse Mary Phinney and spy Frank Stringfellow.

Mercy Street Season 2Image Credit: Erik Heinila for PBS

Mercy Street season one took place in the spring of 1862 just outside of Washington, D.C. in Alexandria, a border town between North and South and the longest Union-occupied city of the war.  Ruled under martial law, Alexandria was the central melting pot of the region, filled with civilians, female volunteers, doctors, wounded soldiers from both sides, free blacks, enslaved and contraband (escaped enslaved people living behind Union lines) African-Americans, speculators and spies. Mercy Street follows the lives of all of these characters, who collide at Mansion House, the Green family’s luxury hotel, which has been taken over and transformed into a Union Army hospital. Need to catch up on season 1? Catch PBS recaps here or catch up on the entire series by picking up the DVD at all Office of Historic Alexandria museums or the Alexandria Visitor Center. Also available on iTunes, Amazon and shopPBS.

Mercy Street season two picks up directly from the dramatic events at the end of the season one finale, continuing to explore the growing chaos within Alexandria, the complicated interpersonal dynamics of Dr. Foster, Nurse Mary and the Mansion House staff, the increasingly precarious position of the Green family and the changing world of the burgeoning African-American population. The season will introduce a number of new elements, taking viewers closer to the fight and into the halls of Confederate power, all set against the intensifying war, starting with the Seven Days’ Battle and culminating with Antietam.

 

Located on the Potomac River waterfront just minutes from Washington, D.C., Alexandria hums with a cosmopolitan feel against an extraordinary historic backdrop. With luxurious accommodations just steps from historic sites, galleries, boutiques and restaurants, visitors can turn a Mercy Street-inspired excursion into a weekend getaway.

 

VISITOR EXPERIENCE DETAILS

 

EVENTS:

 

Civil War Sundays at the Alexandria Archaeology Museum
January 8-May 29, 2017 from 1-5 p.m.
Alexandria Archaeology Museum, 3rd floor of the Torpedo Factory Art Center, 105 N. Union St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/archaeology

Explore the Civil War in Alexandria with Civil War Sundays, a showcase of an original May 26, 1861, edition New-York Tribune detailing Colonel Elmer Ellsworth’s death in Alexandria, a Peeps Diorama illustrating Ellsworth’s death, a diorama of a heating system constructed in Alexandria to warm Civil War hospital tents during the winter of 1861, a cocked and loaded Wickham musket discarded in a privy during the 1860s, an exhibit on the Lee St. Site during the Civil War, and more! Tour the Alexandria Archaeology Museum between 1 and 5 p.m. for Civil War Sundays, on the 3rd floor of the Torpedo Factory Art Center. Admission is free though donations are encouraged.

gadsbyexterior__2__720x486_72_rgbImage Credit: Gadsby’s Tavern

Civil War Wine Dinner with Gray Ghost Winery
January 26, 2017 at 7 p.m.
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 N. Royal St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/gadsbystavern

Start your evening in the City Hotel (today known as Gadbsy’s Tavern Museum) for the first course and conversation with Gray Ghost Vineyards, whose wines are created on lands “Gray Ghost” Confederate John S. Mosby and his men operated upon during the Civil War. Then head down to the restaurant’s main dining room to experience more wine and great food inspired by the 19th century. Doors open at 7 p.m. with the first tasting. Dress is business casual. 

 

Heflebower’s Cobblers & Cocktails at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum
February 3, 2017 from 7-9 p.m.
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 N. Royal St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/gadsbystavern

It is 1862 and tavern keeper Samuel Heflebower is running a bar at the City Hotel where cocktails are “swallowed in the darkness.” Come taste 19th-century cocktails, learn a bit of tavern history, and try to evade the Provost Marshall!

 mercy_street_s2_generic_images_credit_erik_heinila_for_pbs__3__720x480_72_rgbImage Credit: Erik Heinila for PBS

“Love and Romance Between the Lines” Open House Event
February 11, 2017 from noon-4 p.m.
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.carlylehouse.org

The “Who These Wounded Are” exhibit will be open to visitors for free during this open house event. Taste a special historic chocolate treat and come meet Frank Stringfellow and Emma Green to hear about their love and romance that took place between the lines of the North and South in Alexandria during the Civil War.

 

Civil War Winter Drill Day
February 25, 2017 from 1-4 p.m.
Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site, 4301 W. Braddock Rd., Alexandria, VA 22304
www.alexandriava.gov/fortward

Reenactors from the 3rd U.S. Regular Infantry, Company K, will interpret the military life of the Union soldier at Civil War Winter Drill Day at Fort Ward on Saturday, February 25. Members will present drill demonstrations, explain the unit’s uniform and equipment, and talk about the popular field of Civil War reenacting. Snow date is March 4. The program is free with no advance registration required.

gate_720x483_72_rgbImage Credit: Visit Alexandria

U.S. Colored Troops (U.S.C.T.) Living History Encampment
April 8, 2017 from 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site, 4301 W. Braddock Rd., Alexandria, VA 22304
www.alexandriava.gov/fortward

Reenactors from the 54th Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry, Co. B., and the 23rd U.S.C.T. will stage a military encampment that portrays the history, training and soldier life of African-American units associated with the Civil War defenses of Washington. Visitors will learn about the role of the U.S.C.T. in the Union war effort, and about specific units that were trained and stationed in the local area. Historical figures such as Medal of Honor recipient Sgt. Major Christian Fleetwood of the 4th U.S.C.T., a Washington resident and civic leader after the war, will be portrayed. The program is free and is weather dependent.

 

Civil War Ball at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum
April 29, 2017 from 8-11 p.m.
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 N. Royal St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/gadsbystavern

Enjoy an evening of dance from the 1860s in the historic Gadsby’s Tavern ballroom. The evening will include live music, dance instruction, and period desserts. Period attire, either civilian or military, is encouraged.

 

Fort Ward Tour and Civil War Concert
May 20, 2017, tour at 11 a.m.; music at 1 p.m.
Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site, 4301 W. Braddock Rd., Alexandria, VA 22304
www.alexandriava.gov/fortward

Observe Armed Forces Day by attending a soldier-led tour of Fort Ward at 11 a.m., followed by a concert of Civil War music by the Federal City Brass Band at 1 p.m. Tour participants will learn about the construction and history of Fort Ward, and the daily lives of soldiers stationed at the fort. The Federal City Brass Band re-creates the music and appearance of a U.S. Army regimental band of the 1860s. Members perform in authentic dress and play original brass instruments of the period. Song selections are based on original band journals and sheet music of the Civil War era. The concert will feature a variety of military, patriotic and popular selections of the time, introduced with historical commentary. The tour and concert are free with no advance registration required.

carlyle_house_mercy_street_tour_credit_m_enriquez_for_visit_alexandria_3_720x482_72_rgbImage Credit: M. Enriquez for Visit Alexandria

Gala in the Garden 2017
May 20, 2017, reception from 5-7 p.m., patron dinner at 7 p.m.
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.carlylehouse.org

Benefitting Carlyle House Historic Park, the event will feature an after-hours tour of Carlyle House, live music, a silent auction, and cocktail reception with passed hors d’oeuvres and drinks. Patrons will also enjoy a five-course seated dinner by a celebrity chef with wine pairings, a lively discussion with Mercy Street producers, complimentary valet parking, and luxury swag bags upon departure. Must be 21+ to attend. Advance registration required. Tickets can be purchased at www.carlylehouse.org. Proceeds support the preservation and interpretation of historic Carlyle House.

Espionage Tea at Carlyle House
June 4, 2017 from 2:30-4 p.m.
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.carlylehouse.org

Discover your inner spy at a special Espionage Tea. Are you as clever and talented as Frank Stringfellow, a real historical character featured on PBS’ Civil War drama, Mercy Street, and real-life sweetheart of Emma Green who lived at Carlyle House? Tickets can be purchased at www.carlylehouse.org or by calling 703-549-2997. Advance reservations are required.

 

LECTURES:

 

Alexandria Libraries Lecture Series Inspired by PBS’ Mercy Street
January and February 2017
Various Alexandria Library locations
www.alexandria.lib.va.us

In January and February 2017, Alexandria Libraries will host 17 Mercy Street-inspired lectures at various library locations covering topics like Civil War medicine, African American history, women’s history, pre-prohibition breweries, real people who inspired the series, and more from authors, historians and specialists. Visit www.alexandria.lib.va.us to check out upcoming events.

mercy_street_s2_generic_images_credit_erik_heinila_for_pbs__1__720x480_72_rgbImage Credit: Erik Heinila for PBS

Lecture and Book Signing: Helen Veit, author of “Food in the Civil War Era”
January 12, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314
shop.alexandriava.gov

Author Helen Veit presents “The Hidden World of Food in the Civil War,” using recipes from the Civil War to shine a spotlight on the different ways Northerners and Southerners experienced the war. While only glimpses of the war appear in Northern cookbooks, Southern recipes reflected the war at every step. The war utterly transformed eating and cooking in the South, as Southerners searched with growing desperation for ways to approximate favorite foods with substitute ingredients and to ward off hunger. In fact, nostalgia for antebellum food was so strong that it helped to create something we still call “Southern cuisine” even though, surprisingly, the foods Northerners were eating at the time had not been very different.

 

Lecture: Mathew Brady Civil War Photographs of Alexandria
January 31, 2017 at 7 p.m.
Athenaeum, 201 Prince St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.nvfaa.org

Alexandria historian Tom Schultz of DC Military Tours will lead a discussion on seven subject photographs and the new discoveries found in them. Refreshments will be served. Please RSVP at admin@nvfaa.org.

Image Credit: National Archives via Mathew Brady Civil War Collection

Lecture: Charles A. Mills, author of “The Civil War Wedding”
February 9, 2017 at 7 p.m.
Athenaeum, 201 Prince St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.nvfaa.org 

In 1861, 31 million people lived in the United States. The economic and political development of the North and South were so dramatically different that only a long and bloody war could create one nation. The two sections also developed differently with regard to the rules of love, sex and marriage. “The Civil War Wedding” by Charles A. Mills is an entertaining look at the customs and superstitions of weddings during the Civil War era. Mills is the author of numerous books of history and historical fiction, including a number on the history of Northern Virginia: “Alexandria 1861-1865, Hidden History of Northern Virginia, Echoes of Manassas, Historic Cemeteries of Northern Virginia,” and “Civil War Graves of Northern Virginia.” Mills is also the producer and co-host of the cable TV show “Virginia Time Travel.”


Lecture and Candy Tasting: Sweet as Sin
February 18, 2017 at 11 a.m.
Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/blackhistory

Susan Benjamin, candy historian and author, will give a talk about the historic origins of candy based on her most recent book, “Sweet as Sin: The Unwrapped Story of How Candy Became America’s Favorite Pleasure.” The theme of Ms. Benjamin’s talk will be the role African-Americans played in the production of sugar and the candy making business in the 19th century. The talk includes a tasting, where participants sample candy made from period recipes.

 

Lecture and Book Signing: Andrew Smith, author of “Starving the South”
February 23, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.
The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314
shop.alexandriava.gov

From the first shot fired at Fort Sumter until the end of the war four years later, food played a crucial role in specific battles, military campaigns and civilian life throughout the Civil War. Why did the South—the preeminent agricultural region of the nation in 1860—suffer from hunger during the Civil War? How did the North with its much larger urban population and smaller (proportionally) number of farmers feed its armies and civilians abundantly throughout the war and still export massive agricultural surpluses to Europe? What role did food play in the outcome of the Civil War? And how did American food change as a result of the Civil War?

 

Lecture and Book Signing: Rae Eighmey, “Oysters, Baked Beans, and Soldier’s Bread: A Culinary View of Abraham Lincoln’s Life in the White House”
March 9, 2017 at 7:30 p.m.; doors open at 7 p.m.
The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314
shop.alexandriava.gov

When Abraham Lincoln entered the White House he left behind the simple blue apron he put on when he helped Mary in their Springfield kitchen. Now, overburdened with the weight of war, he sometimes had to be coaxed to eat. The meals Abraham Lincoln ate in the White house offer a personal perspective on the life of our 16th president. What were the special dishes Mary requested to tempt his appetite? What did the visitor think who just walked in and found the president sitting, all alone, eating a plate of baked beans? As telegraphs bearing the news came in to the Executive Office Building, how did he celebrate his reelection? In this program you’ll pull up a chair to Lincoln’s table, sit beside him and son Tad at a soldiers’ campfire, and join Abraham on the porch and learn the special way he enjoyed his favorite food, the apple.

green_furniture_factory_credit_library_of_congress_616x408_72_rgbImage Credit: Library of Virginia

Lecture: James Green and Thomas Day: Furniture, Family, and Race in 19th Century Virginia
March 18, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.
Lee-Fendall House, 614 Oronoco St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.leefendallhouse.org

Join Hal Stuart, author of “Virginia Sectional Furniture 1800-1860,” for a comparison of two of 19th century Virginia’s most successful furniture makers—James Green of Alexandria and African-American entrepreneur Thomas Day. James Green and his furniture factory are featured in the national PBS Civil War drama Mercy Street. Tour space is limited, so the purchase of tickets in advance is highly recommended.

 

Lecture and Book Signing: Dr. Psyche A. Williams Forson, “Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs: Black Women Food and Power”
March 25, 2017 at 11 a.m.
Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/blackhistory

Join us for a lecture with Dr. Psyche A. Williams Forson whose book, “Building Houses Out of Chicken Legs: Black Women Food and Power,” examines the ties between African-American food culture, entrepreneurship, travel, and racism, from slavery to the present.

 

EXHIBITS:

 

Clara Barton and the Missing Soldiers Office
January 9-February 3, 2017
Beatley Central Library, 5005 Duke St., Alexandria, VA 22304
www.alexandria.lib.va.us

Between braving the battlefield as a first responder during the Civil War and starting the American Red Cross, Clara Barton spearheaded the search for over 60,000 missing Union soldiers. Discover the untold story through a 10-panel display on loan from the National Museum of Civil War Medicine.

mercy_street_cast_at_stabler-leadbeater_apothecary_museum_credit_m_enriquez_for_visit_alexandria_3_720x482_72_rgbImage Credit: M. Enriquez for Visit Alexandria

This Terrible Disease
Opening January 13, 2017
Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum, 107 S. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/apothecary

As an operating drug store during the occupation of Alexandria in the Civil War, the Leadbeater family sold medicinal remedies for the various diseases like smallpox and malaria that afflicted the local military and civilian populations. Today, visitors can take a guided tour and experience the historic space where occupied Alexandria came to shop. The exhibit features prescriptions and accounts of remedies sold to the Union Commissary Department, the contraband population, and civilian residents during the war.

 

“Mercy Me! Get into Character” Costume Station
January 22-December 31, 2017
Alexandria Visitor Center, 221 King St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.VisitAlexandriaVA.com/mercystreet

Fans of PBS’ Mercy Street can step back in time and try on a recreation of a Civil War-era dress or surgeon’s coat as a playful nod to the national drama series based on real events of Civil War Alexandria. It’s as easy as 1-2-3… try on a costume and grab a prop; strike a pose and take a picture; and share your photo on social media using #MercyStreetPBS! This dress-up station presented by Visit Alexandria is located at the Alexandria Visitor Center and at select Mercy Street-inspired events in 2017.

Carlyle_House_exhibit_hospital_room_CREDIT_L_Barnes_for_Visit_Alexandria_3_720x480_72_RGBImage Credit: L. Barnes for Visit Alexandria


Who These Wounded Are: The Extraordinary Stories of the Mansion House Hospital
Continuing through 2017
Carlyle House Historic Park, 121 N. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.carlylehouse.org

Come see the site that inspired Mercy Street, the PBS series inspired by real events that took place at Carlyle House. The six-episode program revolves around the doctors, nurses, and patients of Mansion House Hospital, a former luxury hotel owned by James Green, a prominent Alexandria businessman who resided in Carlyle House. Tuesday through Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.; Sunday, 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.


Alexandria’s Nurses & Hospitals During the Civil War
Continuing through March 31, 2017
The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/lyceum

This small panel exhibit features stories of some of the real nurses who worked in local hospitals, including two of the main characters on Mercy Street. Also part of the exhibit is a map showing where those medical facilities were located, and comments from a soldier who was treated in some of them, including the notorious “Camp Misery.”

mercy_street_s2_generic_images_credit_erik_heinila_for_pbs__4__480x720_72_rgbImage Credit: Erik Heinila for PBS


Before the Spirits Are Swept Away: African American Historic Site Paintings by Sherry Z. Sanabria
Continuing through May 29, 2017
Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/blackhistory

This exhibition features over 20 paintings by artist Sherry Z. Sanabria (1937-2014) who worked in the D.C. metro area since 1975. The paintings in this series honor the lives of African Americans who survived slavery and years of racial injustice, but whose presence defined the American landscape.

 

Medical Care for the Civil War Soldier
Continuing through 2017
Fort Ward Museum & Historic Site, 4301 W. Braddock Rd., Alexandria, VA 22304
www.alexandriava.gov/fortward

Learn more about the surgical procedures and medical equipment used in the PBS series Mercy Street at Fort Ward Museum’s exhibit, “Medical Care for the Civil War Soldier.” A variety of medical tools, instruments and images from the museum’s medical collection are displayed, including some that relate to surgical procedures featured in the television series. The exhibit is accompanied by a brochure on Civil War medical care.

 fort_ward_museum_57_credit_c_mouledoux_for_visit_alexandria_720x540_72_rgbImage Credit: C. Mouledoux for Visit Alexandria

Mercy Uncovered: Archaeology in Civil War Alexandria
Continuing through 2017
Alexandria Archaeology Museum, 3rd floor of the Torpedo Factory Art Center, 105 N. Union St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/archaeology

Discover Civil War Alexandria through archaeological remains. Exhibits include dioramas and period objects found during excavations, including a musket that was still cocked and loaded. See artifacts excavated from the remains of a Civil War hospital and privy. “Meet” a Civil War drummer boy. Don’t miss the special self-guided Civil War defense of Washington bike or Civil War hospital walking tours.

 

Hotel vs. Hospital
Continuing through September 4, 2017
Gadsby’s Tavern Museum, 134 N. Royal St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/gadsbystavern

Learn the story of the fine hotel industry in Alexandria and how it quickly changed after the Civil War began. The City Hotel (today part of Gadsby’s Tavern Museum at 134 North Royal St.) was the only major hotel in Alexandria to remain open during the entirety of the war. The two other fine hotels in town, Mansion House (transformed into a massive Civil War hospital) and Marshall House (site of the first Northern and Southern deaths due to violence in the Civil War), had closed. Guests will discover how tavern keeper Samuel Heflebower was able to remain in business as he catered to the new customers arriving in Alexandria. This exhibit is included in the regular guided tour, admission charged.

 

TOURS:

 

walking_on_king_street_in_old_town_alexandria_credit_m_enriquez_for_visit_alexandria_720x482_72_rgbImage Credit: M. Enriquez for Visit Alexandria

Apothecary of Mercy Specialty Tour
2nd Sunday in January, February, March and April 2017 at 12:15 p.m.
Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum, 107 S. Fairfax St., Alexandria, VA 22314
shop.alexandriava.gov

Explore the themes of PBS’ Mercy Street through the lens of this family-owned apothecary that stayed in business through Alexandria’s occupation during the Civil War. This 45-minute tour showcases special archival materials and period ingredients. Capacity is limited to 15 and advance registration is encouraged.

 

From Slavery to Freedom Tour
January 21, February 4, February 18, 2017 at 2:00 p.m.
Lee-Fendall House, 614 Oronoco St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.leefendallhouse.org

This special tour interprets the Lee-Fendall House from the perspective of its enslaved inhabitants, exploring the unique experiences of slavery in the city. Hear the true stories of “contrabands,” as seen in the PBS drama Mercy Street. The tour will include special access to areas that are not regularly open to the public.

house_back_720x479_72_rgbImage Credit: Lee-Fendall House 

This Tide of Wounded: The Lee-Fendall House as a Civil War Hospital Tour
January 21, February 4, February 18, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.
Lee-Fendall House, 614 Oronoco St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.leefendallhouse.org

This special tour of the museum and grounds highlights the Lee-Fendall House’s role as a hospital during the Civil War. Highlights include themes addressed in the PBS series Mercy Street, including nursing, soldiers, civilians, medical practices, and free people of color.

 

Discovering Mercy Walking Tour
Biweekly beginning January 29 to April 23, 2017 at 3 p.m.
Presented by Discover Alexandria
Tour begins at Alexandria Visitor Center, 221 King St., Alexandria, VA 22314
discoveralexva.wordpress.com 

Learn about the real history behind PBS’ Civil War drama MERCY STREET during this 75-minute walking tour. Visitors will discover facts about Civil War medicine and nursing, the real Green family of Alexandria portrayed on the show, and the historical context of the Union’s occupation of the city. The tour begins at the Alexandria Visitor Center and ends at Christ Church. Dogs are welcome. To request another tour date and time, email discoveralexandria@gmail.com.

 

Freedom’s Fight in Alexandria Walking Tour
Sundays beginning February 11, 2017
Presented by Manumission Tour Company
Tour begins at the Kate Waller Barrett Library, 717 Queen St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.manumissiontours.com

This 75-minute guided walking tour on the streets of Old Town will give participants insight into Alexandria’s pre-Civil War history of urban slavery, and highlight runaway slaves, like Oscar and George Ball, and abolitionists, such as pharmacist Edward Stabler, who fought back against the “Peculiar Institution” of slavery within Alexandria.

alexandria_contrabands_and_freedmen_cemetery_memorial_credit_m_enriquez_for_visit_alexandria_720x482_72_rgbImage Credit: M. Enriquez for Visit Alexandria

Beyond the Battlefield Historic Walking Tour
March 25, 2017 at 10:00 a.m.
Lee-Fendall House, 614 Oronoco St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.leefendallhouse.org

Take a trip down Mercy Street in this walking tour featuring locations featured in the PBS drama. Participants will see locations and stories associated with soldiers, citizens, and the enslaved, including the occupation of Alexandria and emancipation. The tour lasts approximately 2.5 hours, and the tour route is approximately 1.75 miles.

 

Mercy in Alexandria Walking Tour
By Appointment Only
Presented by DC Military Tours
Tour starts at Alexandria Visitor Center, 221 King St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.dcmilitarytour.com

Experience an inside access tour of 19th century Alexandria. Inspired by the PBS mini-series MERCY STREET, accompany a trained military historian through Civil War era Alexandria and learn the actual history behind the TV show. Get behind-the-scenes stories of locations where MERCY STREET characters lived, worked, and played.

 

Civil War Hospital Self-Guided Walking Tour
Continuing through 2017
Self-guided tour starts at 121 N. Fairfax St.
www.historicalexandria.org

Learn about the many buildings in Alexandria that were used as hospitals during the Civil War, when the Union Army occupied Alexandria. Pick up a copy at the Alexandria Archaeology Museum or download from www.historicalexandria.org.

 

Civil War Self-Guided Walking Tour
Continuing through 2017
Tour begins at The Lyceum, 201 S. Washington St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/lyceum

Explore the sites of Civil War Alexandria, occupied by the Union Army for the entire conflict. See shops, churches, homes and offices that still stand from that time, guided along with easy turn-by-turn directions. Tour begins and ends at The Lyceum: Alexandria’s History Museum, where both parking and your tour are free of charge.

 

Image Credit: M. Enriquez for Visit Alexandria

Courageous Journey Self-Guided Driving Tour
Continuing through 2017
Tour begins at Alexandria Black History Museum, 902 Wythe St., Alexandria, VA 22314
www.alexandriava.gov/blackhistory

Ten historic sites from Visit Alexandria’s self-guided tour and history brochure “Courageous Journey” are featured on this driving tour to get you started on your exploration of Alexandria’s wealth of African-American historic sites. Included in the driving tour are Civil War-era exhibits, parks and memorials including the Alexandria Black History Museum and Contrabands and Freedmen Cemetery Memorial, which help deepen the stories told on PBS’ Mercy Street.

 

Find Alexandria experiences inspired by PBS’ Mercy Street at:
www.VisitAlexandriaVA.com/mercystreet.

 

Explore the PBS series and view season two trailers at:
www.pbs.org/mercy-street or visit the PBS press room at pbs.org/pressroom.

 

Header Image Credit: Erik Heinila for PBS