Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Michael's Colonial Days Field Trip

Michael's 4th grade class has been studying the Colonial period lately, so they went on a field trip to Downtown Fredericksburg to experience a few things from this time period.  I was able to go along as a chaperone.
The first stop was Hugh Mercer's Apothecary Shop.  Colonial medicine was not exactly beneficial to sustaining long life and health (read: leeches, induced bleeding, etc)
It's fun that Olde Town Fredericksburg has retained that quaint feel, even with SUVs and minivans in the background.

A lecture on the most modern medical methods of the 1770s.   They still used the theory of the 4 humors, so when you were sick, you were...um... purged of whatever substance was out of whack.  Fun times.  

Leeches were a very popular way to purge patients of blood.  They were much more pleasant that the scalpel.  

 These leeches were happy and fat, as they had just fed the previous day on fine dining from the local butcher shop.  

The next stop was the Rising Sun Tavern.  I think hotel stays in the 1700-early 1800s are probably not on my list of things to do if they ever invent time travel... 
They did not allow indoor photography, so you will have to come and visit!

The last place we visited was Mary Washington House, which is where George moved his mother Mary during the unrest of the Revolutionary war.  She as living at Ferry Farm, but since it is near the river, he thought it was too dangerous.  Also, her new home was just a block away from her physician/pharmacist, Hugh Mercer.  
Side view of Mary's house 

Front view of Mary's house 

 Home of George's Mom.  Despite the medical care of the day, she lived to be 80 years old. 

The parlor where she had people over for (very expensive) tea.  Michael raised his hand and asked, "If tea was so expensive (because of the tax levied from England), why didn't they just switch to coffee?"  That's my boy! 

The outdoor kitchen 

The kids ate lunch at Hardees, which was the closest fast food joint in downtown Fredericksburg.  

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