Fans of PBS’ Mercy Street, based on real events of Civil War Alexandria, Virginia, can explore the real history behind the show by visiting Alexandria, located just outside of Washington, D.C. The city is presenting 50 Mercy Street-inspired tours, exhibits and events.
The drama continues to unfold on season 2 of PBS’ Mercy Street, and in episode 3 we got a deeper glimpse into the varying statuses and struggles of African-Americans – contraband and free – during the Civil War. In this post, we explore some of these varied experiences and some of the real people who inspired their characters in Mercy Street, including Harriet Jacobs. Keep reading to learn more about these histories and how you can visit the real sites that inspired the series in Alexandria, Virginia, just minutes from Washington, DC.
The highly anticipated Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture opened on the National Mall on September 24, 2016 to powerful reviews from visitors. Then, beginning October 1, 2016, another thread in African American history began being told at Mount Vernon with the opening of the ground-breaking exhibition called “Lives Bound Together: Slavery at George Washington’s Mount Vernon” focusing on the personal stories of Mount Vernon’s enslaved people.
Alexandria’s Parker-Gray neighborhood near Braddock Metro in northwest Old Town is on the National Register of Historic Places, full of historic architecture and rich African American history with extraordinary restaurants and hidden gems. This guide highlights some of our favorite activities and restaurants in the Parker-Gray/Braddock neighborhood.
The creators of PBS’ Mercy Street have been dedicated to illuminating the complexities of the Civil War through the characters and showing that everyone, regardless of gender, class, race or geographic alliances, experienced life during the war differently. In this Mercy Street Monday blog post, we’ll be focusing specifically on the empowering stories of African American characters in the series by rounding up our top 4 Mercy Street inspired experiences in Alexandria on the subject.
You might find yourself saying, what exactly is the Contrabands & Freedmen Cemetery? To which I will respond, only one of Alexandria’s most thought-provoking historical sites! Continue reading