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Learn about the food the Washingtons ate and how meals were prepared in the 18th century. 

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Included with general admission

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Historic Area


Gardens and Landscape Tour

11 a.m.

Come take a walk through the General’s garden and see the founding flowers and plants that recreate Washington's 18th-century landscape and gardens. 

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Dining with the Washingtons Tour

1 p.m.

Explore how the people who lived at Mount Vernon in the 18th century dined on a tour that takes you to the gardens, salt house, smokehouse, slave quarters, greenhouse, and the Mansion’s kitchen. Discover how food was grown, preserved, prepared, and served at Mount Vernon. You'll leave this specialty tour knowing the Washingtons’ favorite recipes, what hired and enslaved servants at Mount Vernon ate, and why Martha Washington wasn’t a fan of Vulcan, Washington’s French hound.

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Go Fish 

Net Making: 9 a.m. - 10:30 a.m., 4 p.m. - 5 p.m.

Fish Packing: 9:30 a.m. - 11:45 a.m., 1 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Salt House

Join our History Interpreters at the Salt House to learn about the role of the smokehouse and salt house in food preservation at Mount Vernon. Visit Master Cooper Marshall Scheetz who will be on hand to talk about and demonstrate the intricate process of barrel making and its importance to food preservation.

See demonstrations of both methods of food preservation and try your hand at packing fish for preservation and making a fishing net.


From Hoecakes to Great Cakes

Visit the Kitchen at Mount Vernon and discover what it took to prepare a meal at Mount Vernon. History Interpreters will highlight the work of enslaved cooks like Doll, Hercules, and Lucy and discuss the origin of various ingredients needed to prepare meals for the Washingtons. 

What Grows Here? 

History Interpreters will be on hand in the gardens to help you identify what is growing and how the various fruits and vegetables grown at Mount Vernon were cultivated, harvested, and cooked.

Explore the farm to learn more about the wheat and tobacco grown at Mount Vernon.

Pickling Demonstrations

12-acre field
9 a.m. - 1 p.m. and 2 p.m. - 4 p.m.

Wheat and Tobacco Farming Demonstrations

2 p.m. - 4:30 p.m.

Cherries at Mount Vernon

9 a.m. - 1 p.m., 2 p.m. - 4 p.m., 12-acre field

You may have heard about the recent discovery of 18th-century bottles containing preserved cherries in the basement at Mount Vernon and wondered what they would have been used for. Visit our Historic Trades staff on the 12-acre field for demonstrations of the uses of preserved fruits.

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