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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.

Century of Quilts
A Century of African-American Quilts

This exhibit showcases eleven colorful and stunning quilts, half of which have never before been seen by the public, spanning more than a century after 1875.

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.

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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Special winter pricing, Jan. 30–Mar. 17, 2016. Explore all the Colonial Williamsburg historic sites and trade shops, including our two art museums, and enjoy the convenience of our complimentary shuttle service for three days.

Your Winter Multi-day Ticket includes:

  • 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 for three (3) days within seven (7) days from first date of use.
  • Seasonal discounts on additional evening programs, tours and carriage rides

Need to Know

  • Your voucher must be exchanged for a ticket at the Colonial Williamsburg Regional Visitor Center.
  • 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+) $32.99 $0.00
YOUTH (6-12) $16.50 $0.00
UNDER 6 $0.00 $0.00
Total: $0.00

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Upcoming Events in the Hennage Auditorium Events

Feb 11
3:30 PM
To Be Seen as an American
Meet three black women who didn't accept society's limits on what they could accomplish. Lydia rose from slave to entrepreneur; Katie Marie was educated but lacked resources; Clara Byrd Baker fought for equal rights in the 20th century. The work of these Williamsburg women spanned three centuries, opening doors and providing new opportunities for the next generation to build on.
Feb 12
12:30 PM
Conversation with James Madison
You will be there when James Madison discusses the "revoluntionary" events that helped inspire and influence political and social events of the day.  Join the challenging conversation as he ponders his experiences in Williamsburg and his ideals for the emerging nation.  
Feb 12
3:30 PM
The Gates of Hell Shall Not Prevail Against Thee
Founded by enslaved men and women in 1776, First Baptist Church has a rich and varied history. Join us on a journey through the history of the Church and meet many of the leaders who helped it flourish through the centuries.
Feb 13
1:45 PM
From a Virginia Governor
As Patrick Henry prepares to leave the office of governor of Virginia, he talks about his friendships and political relations with some key revolutionary leaders. Hear what he thinks of his successor, Thomas Jefferson, and discover what he has to say about General Washington, commander in chief of the Continental Army.
Feb 13
3:30 PM
Faith, Hope, and Love
Meet Johnny and Dolly, two enslaved people who are very much in love, but are forbidden by law to marry. How far would you go for love, for freedom?
Feb 13
5:30 PM
Cowardice or Pragmatism?
T. H. Breen lectures on his book "George Washington's Journey". During the first years of his presidency, George Washington organized a bold and difficult journey to all thirteen original states. His goal was to strengthen the union, which he feared was extremely fragile. But as he was traveled through the South, he discovered that one of his slaves, Hercules, might be plotting to obtain freedom. The clash between the President and the slave forced Washington to do what he vowed never to do--tell a lie.
Feb 14
10:30 AM
A Conversation with the First President and Lady Washington
Join in a conversation with newly elected President Washington and his lady. How do they perceive their roles and duties in the new formed nation? How do they feel about being drawn from retirement into another round of public service? Mrs. Washington will again be called upon to shape her own role, while the new president will need to hold together a culturally diverse, ever-expanding nation. And how will all of this impact the “family”--both enslaved and free--that Mrs. Washington brought with her? 
Feb 14
12:15 PM
A Public Audience with the Fourth President, James Madison
What does President James Madison think about present affairs, the state of the union, and the invention of the executive branch of government? Learn of the philosophy and history that inspired the United States Constitution, and discover Williamsburg's pivotal role in shaping the country's earliest ideas of liberty and republican government. Has America realized the principles established in the early political writings? What will the future hold for this American Experiment?
Feb 14
1:45 PM
A Public Audience with the Third President, Thomas Jefferson
Meet with President Jefferson as he looks back over his long career in public service. He will reflect on the American Revolution, drafting the Declaration of Independence, and his tenure as governor of Virginia during the war. Additionally, listen to his personal insight on what he thinks of his roles in the new government, as ambassador to France, first secretary of state, and third president of the United States.
Feb 15
12:30 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.
Feb 15
3:30 PM
Every Piece Tells a Story
A black woman from the 1960s and a white woman from the turn of the 20th century, reflect on the importance of quilts in their lives. Presented in conjunction with the exhibition “A Century of African-American Quilts” which opened January 30th at the Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Folk Art Museum.
Feb 16
12:30 PM
Conversation with Jefferson and Wythe
Thomas Jefferson discusses Revolutionary events with his teacher and friend, George Wythe. Learn how Wythe's enlightened teaching shaped the ideas of the War for Independence.
Feb 16
3:30 PM
A Mother’s Difficult Choice: Hope, Fears and a Good Trade
It's 1789. The war is over and the constitution has been ratified. A new government promises liberty and freedom for all. Yet, Miriam and Betsy consider what the future holds. What concerns this free black laundress and this white widow? What will their sons face as they navigate the apprenticeship system to learn a trade?
Feb 17
10:30 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?
Feb 17
12:30 PM
A Conversation with Martha Washington
When George Washington was elected President no one gave a thought to what Martha Washington would do while he served his country once again. Join Mrs Washington in the late spring of 1789 and discuss with her the duties of the President's wife and help her decide what role she will play.
Feb 17
3:30 PM
A Gathering of Hair
Despite living in a world where most enslaved persons had little time to themselves and for family, they still found ways to continue their rich culture and strong relationships. Meet Elizabeth, a free black woman, and her enslaved friends, Agnes and Lydia, as they prepare for a gathering. Discover how these women manage love, work, beauty, friendship ... and of course, hair!

Upcoming Events in the Art Museums Events

Feb 11
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 today.
Feb 11
2:45 PM
African American Artists
Discover the talent and explore the accomplishments of African-American artists and artisans in the 18th-20th centuries. This guided tour of the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg showcases a variety of the folk and decorative arts they created, as well as art that depicts their lives.
Feb 11
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 today.
Feb 12
10:30 AM
A Century of African American Quilts
Explore the exhibit of African American quilts on this guided tour.  Learn about a century of quilt styles and techniques; discover the unique stories of the qult makers and enjoy a hands-on activity.
Feb 12
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 12
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.
Feb 12
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 12
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.
Feb 12
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.
Feb 13
10:30 AM
Explore the Declaration of Independence
Explore the exciting events leading to the Declaration of Independence and the American Revolution! It's a guided tour the entire family will enjoy. Geared for ages 10 and up.
Feb 13
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 13
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.
Feb 13
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 13
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.
Feb 13
2:45 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.
Feb 14
11:00 AM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 14
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.
Feb 14
1:00 PM
Decorative Arts Highlights
Explore and learn on a guided tour of some of the museum's masterworks on exhibit. View paintings, ceramics, textiles, furniture, and silver.
Feb 14
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.
Feb 14
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.
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.