Through the Alexandria Archaeology Museum, the City of Alexandria, Virginia’s archaeologists, volunteers and students work with citizens and developers to study and manage archaeological resources important to the community’s past, and to share this knowledge with both a local and world-wide audience. Through local preservation laws, archaeologists review all construction in the City so that sites can be excavated in advance of development when necessary to protect important resources.
“A Community Digs Its Past: The Lee Street Site” uses the excavation of one city block, at the corner of Queen and South Lee streets, to explore the steps of archaeology as well as the history of Alexandria.
This site presented a microcosm of the City, including 18th century wharves, early 19th century residences, shops, taverns and warehouses, a well-known 19th century commercial bakery, and a support complex for Civil War hospitals during Union occupation of Alexandria.
Small, changing exhibits display a variety of Alexandria discoveries. These may include artifacts from prehistoric sites, an Alexandria stoneware kiln, an 18th century tavern, Civil War sites, or finds from the most recent excavation. On most Fridays, visitors will see volunteers working in the archaeology lab, washing, marking or cataloguing artifacts from a recent site, or working with artifacts excavated in Alexandria during the past thirty years.
The Alexandria Adventure Lessons demonstrate the step-by-step process of archaeology through hands-on group activities using artifacts from the Alexandria Archaeology collection. Call the Museum to schedule a lesson for your school class, scout group, birthday party, summer camp, or adult and senior groups. (A small fee is charged.)
From our website, check the Museum’s calendar, subscribe to eNews, or join the Friends of Alexandria Archaeology for news about lectures, Dig Days, family programs and other special events.