Welcome to Historic Vienna Inc. and the Freeman Store & Museum

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* IMPORTANT NOTICE *

COVID-19 update:  TEMPORARILY CLOSED

The Freeman Store & Museum and the Used Book Cellar are closed until further notice and all in person events and tours are cancelled.  We regret that we cannot welcome visitors at this time. 

If you have questions or concerns please EMAIL US at historicviennava@gmail.com

or call Anne at 703-994-9054

We will post any future reopening plans here.  Thank you for your understanding.

If you would like to purchase something from our shop, please send us an email.

(Email is the best way to reach us at this time.  We are not checking voice messages regularly.)

You can also stay connected with us at

Instagram @freemanstore_museum

Facebook group Historic Vienna, Inc. – Freeman Store and Museum

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The Freeman Store has pop-up online sales via a dedicated website.  These sales happen about once a month and last for one week with a contact-less pickup on our front porch.

Please watch for an announcement here about our next sale date!

If you would like to purchase something from our shop at any time, please email us at historicviennava@gmail.com

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The Used Book Cellar at the Freeman Store will be open on Saturday, August 15 from 12-3pm.  While the Store and Museum remain closed, we will welcome a maximum of 3 visitors into the Cellar in 15-minute increments.  You will be required to wear a mask upon entrance, use hand sanitizer and maintain social distance of 6′ while inside.  No cash will be accepted.  Credit card transactions only.

Thank you in advance for your cooperation as we navigate through this pandemic.

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Please take our survey!  At HVI we would like to capture, and then archive, some of your Vienna memories during this Covid-19 Pandemic, through a series of Survey Monkey questionnaires.  The survey should take you less than 5 minutes to complete. We really appreciate your participation! Please use this this link to take the survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/V9L5M3C

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Many organizations have released statements about the issues that recent protests addressed. The statement released by The National Trust for Historic Preservation https://savingplaces.org/press-center/media-resources/statement-on-death-of-george-floyd-and-the-aftermath#.XtkBhTpJGUk caught our attention. It said:

We believe that historic preservation can play a critical role in acknowledging and healing the divisions in our nation, by telling the full story of our often-difficult history, by elevating and preserving the enormous and important contributions African Americans have made to our nation, and by carrying that powerful legacy forward through places of truth and reconciliation.

We at Historic Vienna agree with the National Trust’s statement that we can play a critical role in the healing the divisions in our nation. We will continue to preserve all of Vienna’s history and strive to tell the full story.

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CALENDAR OF EVENTS 2020 will give you an idea of the types of events offered by Historic Vienna, Inc.  Please note however, that all in person events and tours are cancelled at this time.  Thank you.

2020 Calendar

HISTORIC VIENNA INK Newsletter:

INK Summer 2020
INK Spring 2020
INK Winter 2019
INK Fall 2019
INK Summer 2019
INK Spring 2019
INK Winter 2018
INK Fall 2018
INK Summer 2018
INK Spring 2018

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2020 EXHIBITS: Vienna in the 1960’s
AND the Women’s Suffrage Movement – Where Are We Now?

Please enjoy our exhibits here online until we are able to reopen.

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2020 EXHIBITS:
“Vienna in the 1960s”
All you hippies, flower children, bohemians, and mavericks prepare yourselves to flash back to the 1960s and its days of sit-ins, anti-war marches, and Woodstock. It’s been said that if you remember the ’60s, you weren’t there! Well, we hope that you were there and that you remember it and come visit our new exhibit. Listen to the music of the time and experience the fashion, the entertainment, the technology, the toys & games, and so much more.

2020 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1960s























“Women’s Rights Movement”
Our continuing hall exhibit will focus on WHERE ARE WE NOW?
The fifth, and final, exhibit in the 5-year series of small exhibits on the history of the women’s rights movement will focus on where it stands today. It has been 100 years since women won the right to vote. While women have won many rights, they have not yet achieved full equality. This exhibit looks at our progress in many areas including economic, political, educational, sports, family and health.

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PAST EXHIBITS:
2019 EXHIBITS:
“Vienna in the 1950s”
This period was a time of massive expansion in Vienna. We will show how our town changed and improved during those years as we highlight the decades’ rewards and challenges.
Our continuing exhibit on the “Women’s Suffrage Movement” will focus on
Women Creating a More Perfect Democracy: 100 Years of the League of Women Voters
2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Vienna in the 1950’s

2019 Exhibit: Women Creating a More Perfect Democracy. 100 Years of the League of Women Voters

Women creating a more perfect Democracy. 100 Years of the League of Women Voters.

Women creating a more perfect Democracy. 100 Years of the League of Women Voters.

Women creating a more perfect Democracy. 100 Years of the League of Women Voters.


2018 EXHIBITS
In commemoration of the 100th anniversary of the end of World War I, Historic Vienna Inc.’s 2018 main exhibit, located on the second floor, is entitled Home Front – The Great War and Vienna.  The exhibit features information, images, models, and artifacts, including uniforms, equipment, and documents, from “the war  to end all wars.” The exhibit includes a diorama of the fearsome trenches that were ubiquitous on World War I battlefields as well as a graphic display of awards and decorations.

“Vienna didn’t have an awful lot to do with the war,” notes another HVI curator, Mike Berger. “Seventy-three men with a Vienna address fought in the war,” which the United States did not enter until 1917.  However, the names of two Vienna soldiers who lost their  lives in World War I will ring familiar to those living in the community today. The exhibit tells how George Dyer and Clarence Gunnell, for whom the local American Legion Post is named, lost their lives.

World War I exhibit

World War I exhibit

World War I exhibit

World War I exhibit

World War I exhibit

Women’s Suffrage exhibit has received another brand new look this year and is now focused on The Women’s Rights Movement through Cartoons.  The exhibit features more than 50 political cartoons and other images collected from newspapers, postcards and other publications from the 1850’s onward.

The cartoons focus on the right to vote as well as other women’s rights related to parental custody, property, employment and income, divorce, economic health of the family and birth control.

Annual exhibits related to the women’s rights movement will continue at the Freeman Store through 2020, which will mark the 100th anniversary of adoption of the Constitutional amendment allowing women to vote.

Please learn more about Historic Vienna’s Women’s Suffrage exhibits by clicking on the links below.  VERY detailed information is available in these two Adobe Acrobat PDFs which include all the information displayed during our first two exhibits at the Freeeman Store and Museum.

HVI Origins of Women’s Rights Exhibit 1

HVI The Women’s Rights Movement in 1917 Exhibit 2

 

Suffrage Exhibit

Suffrage Exhibit

Please support Historic Vienna Inc. using Amazonsmile !

Amazon Smile LINK

When you purchase any eligible item on Amazon, 0.5% of the item price is donated to our 501c3 Non-profit organization.

 

HVI Memberships are from January 1 to December 31. Please renew if you are a member or join our group in order to promote history and support Historic Vienna Inc. Annual Memberships: Individual – $25, Family – $30 & Group or Corporate – $40

The Marco Polo Building a part of life in Vienna   By Connie Stuntz

Because of the seemingly certain fate of Vienna’s Marco Polo building at 245 Maple Avenue West, this article I found in our collection of memories seems timely. It appeared in The Providence Journal, a popular weekly McLean newspaper edited by Richard Smith. His wife Louise Smith wrote “The Grapevine,” a neighborly society column enjoyed by much of Fairfax County.

In her December 7, 1954 column, she describes the interior of the Marco Polo in its first year when my husband Mayo and I hosted a holiday dance there:

The dance was held in the new Garden Room opened in Vienna during the past Fall by Mr. George Copp, and no more agreeable place could have been found. The building features a two-story, semi-circular bay window in the center of its façade. Behind the lower one on Saturday evening twinkled the lights of a Christmas tree. Coats were left below on ample racks, and one went to the second floor for dancing. 

At one end of the ballroom was a great raised fireplace, in which roared at first, and finally glowed, a cheerful fire. The walls have enough variety in finish to lend interest and a certain coziness not usually found in such large rooms. There is red brick, pine paneling, painted plaster, and a large expanse of scenic wallpaper.

We were pleased that George Copp had been inspired to build such a gathering place in Vienna. The spacious second floor room was perfect for the Christmas Dance for several hundred special friends and relations whom we wanted to entertain before our family left Vienna in early 1955 for Japan for several years.

As I’m writing this now, I’m thinking of all sorts of events I’ve attended at the Marco Polo Restaurant on the first floor, particularly Ayr Hill Garden Club May luncheons. They always had good food and plenty of parking. Until now I had not realized how much the 62 years of this building’s history meant to me.

Special Event: Re-Enactment of the Lydecker Store Secession Vote – (EVENT COMPLETE – MAY 16, 2015)

Secession Vote Will Be Reenacted in Vienna

In May 1861, Vienna residents assembled in front of the Lydecker Store (today the Freeman Store and Museum, 131 Church Street, SE), to vote on the referendum for Virginia to secede from the Union. The vote was 76 against the ordinance of secession, 44 for it.  Mr. Earnest Birdsong, the first to cast a vote said, “We are now a separate nation, my vote is for secession from the Union.” However, another, United States federal sailor Nathaniel Bosworth, said that while his allegiance was with Virginia, he believed, “The South will lose the war, and I vote to reject the ordinance.”

On May 16, 2015, at 1:00 p.m., a reenactment of the 1861 vote will take place at the exact same location, the steps of the Freeman Store and Museum. Civilians from the 19th century will cast their vote, for or against seceding from the Commonwealth of Virginia, an event that was repeated in 1861 at more than a dozen other locations in Fairfax County, as well as across Virginia. While the majority of Fairfax County and Virginia, as a whole, voted to leave the Union, Vienna voted against secession and in favor of remaining in the Union. The public is invited to attend and participate in the reenactment.

A Snapshot Of 1897: Farms and Village Homes in Fairfax County

The following text is an extract from a pamphlet entitled “Farms and Village Homes in Fairfax County,” Published in January 1897 by O.E. Hine.

VIENNA

Vienna is a regularly laid out village of four hundred inhabitants, situated on the Washington & Ohio railroad, fifteen miles north from Alexandria, and about the same distance west from Washington.  Is near the centre of the county on one of the most public roads leading to the city.  It is incorporated under a most liberal charter, governed by nine councilmen, three of whom are elected annually by the people.  Already a comprehensive system of improvements has been inaugurated, and from present indications is designed to improve into a beautiful village, and a considerable business and manufacturing centre.

Already it has a planing mill, two grist mills and two saw mills, two lime kilns, shoe and harness shop, meat market, stores, blacksmith and wagon shops, canning factory, &tc., &tc.  White and colored schools are maintained here; the white a first-class graded school.  It is connected with the county seat five miles distant by a stage twice a day; with Washington by four trains each way, and with the whole world by telegraph and an electric road has been chartered to this place.  Is the centre of a fine dairy region, settled most entirely by northern farmers, many of whom are engaged in sending milk to the city.  Over five hundred gallons are sent daily from this neighborhood, averaging the farmer at his door 7 ½ to 10 cents per gallon in summer and from 12 to 14 in winter.

Recently one hundred acres of high rolling land adjoining the station has been handsomely laid out in building lots, streets graded, sidewalks laid, and shade trees planted, making one of the most attractive subdivisions near the city.  These lots average of $100 each to persons contemplating building, but none are offered to speculators who do not intend to build.  A handsome map will be furnished on application.

Lots in Vienna

2 Acres.  Seven room house in good condition; well at door, young orchard of peaches, apples and cherries, excellent garden land, stable and hen house.  Situated one mile from station.  Price $2,000.

 

Farms and Village Homes Jan 1897 O.E. Hine Vienna VA