Alexandria, Virginia just outside Washington, D.C., is nationally recognized for its rich history and beautifully preserved 18th– and 19th-century architecture, including many sites important to women’s history. To celebrate Women’s History Month and International Women’s Day, we’ve rounded up our top 10 ways to explore women’s history in Alexandria, from sites associated with abolitionist Harriet Jacobs to new waterfront restaurant Vola’s Dockside Grill named after Alexandria’s first female city manager and local Civil Rights leader Vola Lawson. You can also celebrate Women’s History Month by supporting women-owned businesses in Alexandria, including almost 90% of the shops in the Old Town Boutique District. Keep reading to learn more about the people and places in Alexandria who helped forge the way for women’s rights.
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.