Incredible Discovery Made At George Washington’s Mount Vernon

Hello everyone! Grab your shovels and sense of wonder as we delve into a remarkable archaeological find at George Washington’s Mount Vernon mansion. Imagine this: you’re strolling through history and stumble upon a treasure trove of over 200-year-old glass bottles containing perfectly preserved fruit preserves. Yes, you heard that right!

Archaeologists recently unearthed 29 intact bottles from the cellar of Washington’s iconic home. These bottles, containing cherries, gooseberries, or currants, had likely been hidden since before the American Revolution. Mount Vernon President and CEO Doug Bradburn couldn’t contain his excitement, saying, “Never in our wildest dreams did we imagine this spectacular archaeological discovery.”

These incredible finds were extracted from five underground storage pits beneath the mansion and are now being carefully examined and preserved. The bottles will undergo scientific analysis to unlock more secrets about their contents and the preservation methods used.

Just two months ago, archaeologists made headlines with the discovery of the first two bottles, manufactured in Europe and filled with cherries and pits. Nick Beard, the archaeologist who found the initial bottles, described the experience as “once-in-a-lifetime,” noting the rarity of finding such well-preserved food remains.

The project behind these discoveries is part of a massive $40 million revitalization effort at Mount Vernon, aiming to restore the foundation and preserve Washington’s 18th-century home by 2026, marking the 250th anniversary of the Declaration of Independence.

So far, archaeologists have identified 54 cherry pits and 23 stems, suggesting these bottles were once brimming with cherries. These pits, remarkably intact, might even be viable for future germination, offering a living link to the past.

The significance of these finds extends beyond the fruit they contain. They provide a powerful glimpse into the lives of those who lived and worked at Mount Vernon. During Washington’s time, hundreds of enslaved people managed the food preparation and preservation, showcasing their incredible knowledge and skill. One such person was Doll, a cook brought to Mount Vernon by Martha Washington in 1759, who oversaw the estate’s kitchen.

Jason Boroughs, Principal Archaeologist at Mount Vernon, shed light on how these bottles were stored. Sometime between 1758 and 1776, someone dug a pit in the cellar floor, placed the bottles inside, and filled the pit with dense clay, preserving the contents for centuries.

Bradburn speculates that the bottles were possibly forgotten during the tumultuous period when Washington left Mount Vernon to lead the Continental Army against the British. This chaotic time could have led to these artifacts being unintentionally left behind, only to be rediscovered centuries later.

These bottles and their contents stand as a testament to the intricate food preparation practices of the past and the historical importance of Mount Vernon. They remind us of the skilled hands that worked behind the scenes, ensuring sustenance and survival during a critical period in American history.

So, folks, this discovery isn’t just about fruit preserves—it’s a juicy slice of history that brings us closer to understanding the daily lives of those who shaped our nation. Stay tuned as more revelations emerge from this archaeological adventure at George Washington’s Mount Vernon!

Daily Mail


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here