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The Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg

The Art Museums of
Colonial Williamsburg

The distinctive collections of the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum and the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum are located under one roof. Enter through the Public Hospital of 1773 and be sure to investigate the exhibits detailing mental illness treatments from the 18th and 19th centuries. The hospital was the first of its kind in North America.

Downstairs, you’ll find wonderful examples of American and British antiques and decorative art from the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries and be able to explore bold and imaginative pieces of colonial and contemporary folk art.

View more upcoming events in our calendar.

Dollhouse for World Made Small
The World Made Small

Dollhouses are some of the most popular miniature versions of the real world.

Bruton Parish Church
Faith, Community and Change:
The Early History of Bruton Parish Church


Explore the first hundred years of the church’s history and its important role in the community.

Magnolia Image for Birds, Bugs, and Plants
Birds, Bugs, and Blooms: Observing the Natural World in the 18th Century

Explore the fascination of New World plants and animals with this exhibitions beautiful watercolors and prints.

A sample from the exhibition, A Celebration of Quilts
A Celebration of
American Quilts


This exhibition features 12 American quilts that represent the widely diverse types of quilts made in America from the 18th and 20th centuries.

Example of Chinese Porcelain from the collections of Colonial Williamsburg
China of the Most Fashionable Sort: Chinese Export Porcelain in Colonial America

A wide variety of Chinese porcelain with a particular focus on pieces with histories in Virginia.

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For just $10 more than our Single-day Ticket, enjoy admission for the rest of the year! Explore all Colonial Williamsburg homes, community places, and trade shops—including our two art museums—and enjoy the convenience of our complimentary shuttle.

Your Multiday Pass includes:

  • Unlimited admission to up to 35 exhibition sites and 22 trade sites practicing more than 30 18th-century trades, 2 world-class museums, and more than 100 gardens until December 31, 2015.
  • 10% discount on most additional tours and evening programs.

Need to Know

  • Your voucher must be exchanged for a ticket at the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center.
  • Discounts do not apply to any evening programs between Thanksgiving Day and the first weekend after New Year’s Day.
  • Programs do not include dining events.
  • Some regular daytime programs require reservations.
  • Pricing and benefits are subject to change. Programs are subject to change; some may be weather dependent. Check out our Inclement Weather Policy for more information.
Colonial Williamsburg
PRICE
QUANTITY SUBTOTAL
ADULT (13+) $50.99 $0.00
YOUTH (6-12) $25.49 $0.00
UNDER 6 $0.00 $0.00
Total: $0.00

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Upcoming Events in the Hennage Auditorium Events

Sep 5
1:45 PM
Little Citizens
Join one of the Revolutionary City's Founding Fathers in an audience designed for young audiences. Learn the stories, ideas and struggles of a young nation through the eyes of those who helped build it, then create your own version of the Bill of Rights during a hands-on activity.  Discover for yourself if you have what it takes to be a citizen of the new American experiment.
Sep 5
4:00 PM
Hard Times: Songs of the Working Life
Cap off your afternoon with a concert celebrating workers and working. The members of Henleys Fork promise tight harmonies and hot instrumentals that span the 18th through the 20th century. Doug Austin, Brian Forsman, and Barry and Lynn Trott, long-time Williamsburg musicians, delight audiences with their songs and stories. They will perform on a variety of instruments, including fiddle, banjo, guitar, mandolin and bass.
Sep 6
1:45 PM
Meet a Nation Builder
It takes more than stirring words and hard-fought battles to build a nation. It takes farmers, merchants, builders, teachers, craftsmen, laborers, and more. Meet one of America's unsung nation builders—one of the men and women, preachers and house servants, enslaved and free—who joined the historical giants to overthrow tyranny and establish a self-governing republic.
Sep 6
3:45 PM
Duty and Faith
Meet Robert Carter III and discover how his faith journey affected his relationship to slavery. A wealthy planter, Carter inherited and owned hundreds of slaves. Learn why this active member of the Church of England from childhood converted to evangelical Christianity in 1778. How did his faith and attendance at a Baptist church where all members (including slaves) were treated as equals relate to his growing opposition to the institution of slavery during the 1780s? What ultimately led him, in 1791, to a great act of faith--an act that most men of the Enlightenment and the Church could only see as a theory . . . not necessarily a duty.
Sep 7
1:45 PM
The Spirit of Liberty
Former enslaved preacher, Gowan Pamphlet, recalls the promises of the Declaration of Independence along with events of 1776 and their impact on the enslaved community of Williamsburg.
Sep 8
11:30 AM
Hammered Dulcimer Old & New
Take a brief historical tour of the development of music high and low from medieval troubadours to street tunes of Elizabeth's England and Jamestown, to the Baroque of Williamsburg's golden age, to the sheet music popular in the Civil War, to the customary folk music of today--richly interpreted by Timothy Seaman on the amazing hammered dulcimer.
Sep 8
1:45 PM
Meet a Nation Builder:
Edith Cumbo
During the American Revolution, there were a few free blacks living in and around Williamsburg. Meet Ms. Edith and discover how free black Virginians lived in the city that provided challenges to her and others.
Sep 9
11:30 AM
Equiano Forum
Secret Keepers: Literacy, Slavery, and the Law
Explore how a secret network of free blacks and slaves used the houses and properties in Williamsburg to hide runaway fugitives. Film excerpts from "The Runaway" dramatize the dangers of concealing fugitives, who used various methods to escape bondage. While laws supported the slave owners, what means did they have to break this chain of secrecy?
Sep 9
1:45 PM
To Mrs. Washington with Love
Hear today the letter that was discovered tucked away in a desk drawer by one of Martha Washington's granddaughters. It is one of only two surviving letters written by George Washington to his wife just after he had accepted the Generalship of the Continental Army in June of 1775. Hear the General speak of his concerns over the distress and hardship this new position may cause his wife and Mrs. Washington's reaction to this news.
Sep 10
11:30 AM
Equiano Forum
Princes Without a Palace:
Tracing African Princes and Captives in Williamsburg
Explore the stories of captured African princes who negotiated their return to their homeland. Two film excerpts are featured in this overview of the Atlantic slave trade. "Slave Trade," is a Colonial Williamsburg production dramatizing an American family’s discussion about the profits and justification of slavery. “The Bloody Writing is for ever Torn,” was produced by the Omohundro Institute at the College of William and Mary and was filmed in in the Republic of Ghana. It traces the experiences of Africans moved from the interior to Elmina Castle on the coast, where they were detained before being loaded on slave ships. This program is part of Colonial Williamsburg's Equiano Forum on Early African American History and Culture which seeks to broaden the public knowledge about African and African American history and culture in Virginia and the Atlantic World during the American Revolutionary era.
Sep 10
1:45 PM
A More Perfect Union?
James Madison, who headed the Virginia Delegation to the Constitution and who is penned as the father of the Constitution, debates with his most ardent Virginian opponent, Patrick Henry, who led his fellow Virginians to reject it.
Sep 11
1:45 PM
Pursuit to Monticello
During the Revolutionary War, British Lieutenant-Colonel General Banastre Tarleton gained the nickname "Bloody Ban" for his cutthroat battlefield tactics. He is also credited with helping to capture the city of Charleston, South Carolina. Learn more of his "flight to Monticello" and Jefferson's reaction to discovering his life and those of his family were in danger.
Sep 12
11:45 AM
The Pious Man’s Daughter, The Rebel’s Wife
Betsy Nicholas grew up in a very religious home with her father, Robert Carter Nicholas, and held God’s teaching in the highest regard. Find out how her upbringing prepared her to become part of the Randolph family. How did her personal experiences affect her husband, children, and her own religious journey?
Sep 12
1:45 PM
Meet a Nation Builder
It takes more than stirring words and hard-fought battles to build a nation. It takes farmers, merchants, builders, teachers, craftsmen, laborers, and more. Meet one of America's unsung nation builders—one of the men and women, preachers and house servants, enslaved and free—who joined the historical giants to overthrow tyranny and establish a self-governing republic.
Sep 13
1:45 PM
The President of a New Nation
Have a conversation with one of the presidents of the new nation. You will have a chance to hear his plans for the future and tell him of your hopes and concerns.
Sep 13
3:30 PM
Gaelic Tales
Gaelic tales have been passed down from generation to generation and have kept alive a long ago culture. Listen to stories that entertain, enlighten and define who we are today, shared by master storyteller Donna Wolf. This Grandparents Day, come enjoy stories sure to delight the young and young at heart.

Upcoming Events in the Art Museums Events

Sep 5
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 5
2:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 6
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 6
12:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 6
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 6
1:30 PM
Ceramics Up-Close
What sort of dishes did our colonial ancestors buy? Where did the ceramics come from and how were they used? First, join the conversation on a guided tour, then drop in for a behind-the-scenes view of the museum's ceramic storage vault.
Sep 6
2:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 7
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 7
12:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 7
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 7
2:00 PM
Behind Closed Drawers
Drop in to get a close look at "Textiles of the Early South." Then, peer into the textile study drawers and examine additional clothing and needlework from Colonial Williamsburg's collections.
Sep 7
2:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 8
10:30 AM
Colonial Williamsburg Collects
During this guided tour, learn about how and why objects have been collected for Colonial Williamsburg over the years, and discover the circumstances that lead to the creation of the DeWitt Wallace Decorative Arts Museum.
Sep 8
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 8
12:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 8
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Sep 8
2:00 PM
Introduction To Folk Art
Discover whimsical and fascinating paintings, sculpture, and textiles from Mrs. Rockefeller's collection on this guided tour. These pieces are the basis of the museum's original collection.
Sep 8
2:15 PM
Focus on Furniture
You may be surprised to find that many of today's home furnishings are deeply tied to those of the past. Take an in-depth guided tour of 18th- and early 19th-century furniture. You'll see rare baroque, rococo, and neo-classical tables, chairs, chests, and desks that set the fashions we continue to enjoy.
Sep 8
3:30 PM
Focus on Furniture
You may be surprised to find that many of today's home furnishings are deeply tied to those of the past. Take an in-depth guided tour of 18th- and early 19th-century furniture. You'll see rare baroque, rococo, and neo-classical tables, chairs, chests, and desks that set the fashions we continue to enjoy.
Sep 9
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Embark on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Handicap AccessibilityFully wheelchair accessible via ramp in fenced area at the west side of the Public Hospital of 1773 building. Passenger drop off and limited parking is accessible by way of the gravel drive off South Henry Street.
Five front entrance steps with railing; passenger elevators; wheelchair accessible restrooms. Additional handicapped parking is behind the building, off Nassau Street.