Fifth annual Museum Day


Catherine Culver reported to Historic City News that on Saturday, September 26, 2009, both Government House Museum of History and Archaeology and Colonial Spanish Quarter Museum will participate in the fifth annual Museum Day, presented by Smithsonian magazine.

A celebration of culture, learning and the dissemination of knowledge, Smithsonian’s Museum Day reflects the spirit of the magazine, and emulates the free-admission policy of the Smithsonian Institution’s Washington, DC-based properties. Doors will be open free of charge to Smithsonian magazine readers and Smithsonian.com visitors at museums and cultural institutions nationwide.

Last year, upwards of 200,000 people attended Museum Day, with all 50 states plus Puerto Rico represented by over 900 participating museums, including 84 Smithsonian affiliate museums. This year, the magazine expects to attract over 1,000 museums.

“Museum Day allows smaller museums like ours to join together with major museums to share our culture and history, educate the public, and, hopefully, encourage membership,” said Catherine Culver, Marketing & Event Coordinator with the City of St. Augustine, Department of Heritage Tourism.

GOVERNMENT HOUSE MUSEUM OF HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY

Government House Museum of History and Archaeology, 48 King Street, presents an overview of four centuries of St. Augustine’s history. Providing a good introduction to the city’s past, this museum features artifacts recovered from archaeological digs and local shipwrecks. Artifacts on display include gold and silver coins from the colonial periods, rifles, pistols, and other weaponry, military uniforms, a reproduction of Colonial-era ship’s hold, and many other historical artifacts. Open daily. For additional information, call 904-825-5079.

COLONIAL SPANISH QUARTER MUSEUM

In the Colonial Spanish Quarter Museum, a living history museum showing 1740s daily life in Spanish St. Augustine, museum interpreters dressed in period clothing demonstrate crafts and activities such as leatherworking, blacksmithing, carpentry, calligraphy, indoor and outdoor cooking, heritage gardening, and possibly a musket firing. The Colonial Spanish Quarter Museum, located at 29 St. George Street, is open daily from 9:00 am to 5:30 pm. For more information, call 904-825-6830.

Visit www.smithsonian.com/museumday to download your Museum Day Admission Card. Attendees must present the Museum Day Admission Card to gain free entry to participating institutions. Each card provides museum access for two people, and one admission card is permitted per household. Listings and links to participating museums’ can also be found on the website.

Department of Heritage Tourism

The City of St. Augustine, Department of Heritage Tourism is steward of the City’s seven-decade long program of the preservation and restoration, which includes care of many historic structures. Center around these historic structures, visitors are invited to experience a variety of interpretative programs and heritage events.

In addition to the Colonial Spanish Quarter Museum and Government House Museum of History and Archaeology, the Department of Heritage Tourism also manages de Mesa-Sanchez House, a restored 1830s American Territorial period house museum.

For more information, call Catherine Culver at 825-5088.

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