Conserving and Displaying an American Treasure: George Washington’s Headquarters Tent
Philadelphia, PA, August 31, 2016 — When the Museum of the American Revolution opens on April 19, 2017, it will feature one of the most iconic surviving artifacts of the Revolution: George Washington’s Headquarters Tent, which served as Washington’s office and sleeping quarters throughout much of the Revolutionary War.
Preparing this one-of-a-kind artifact for display was one of the most complicated and complex preservation projects in generations. On Thursday, October 6, 2016, as part of DesignPhiladelphia 2016, a panel discussion will bring together a group of professionals who collaborated across disciplines to conserve and display this unique piece of American history.
The Museum of the American Revolution’s Vice President of Collections, Exhibitions, and Programming Dr. R. Scott Stephenson; textile conservator Virginia Whelan; and Alex Stadel, a structural engineer from Keast & Hood, will discuss the tent’s history, conservation, and the innovative structure designed to support this priceless artifact.
The event will take place from 6 – 8 p.m. at Carpenters’ Hall (320 Chestnut St.), which is steps away from the new Museum and hosted the First Continental Congress in 1774. Tickets are $10 and are available for purchase here. Proceeds will go to the tent’s continued conservation.
“George Washington’s Headquarters Tent is a powerful symbol of American freedom, and one that must be preserved for future generations,” said Stephenson. “The tent has already survived several centuries as an authentic witness to our nation’s founding, and our efforts to conserve and display it will ensure that it survives – and is celebrated – for many more.”
Called “the heart and soul of the [Museum’s] collection, as it was for the Continental Army” by Smithsonian.com, it was within the folds of this tent that Washington made decisions that changed the course of history. At the Museum, the tent will be featured in a dedicated theater as part of a multimedia presentation exploring Washington’s leadership.
About the Museum of the American Revolution
The Museum of the American Revolution, which opens in the heart of historic Philadelphia on April 19, 2017, will explore the dynamic story of the American Revolution using its expansive collection of Revolutionary-era weapons, personal items, documents, and works of art. Immersive galleries, dynamic theaters, and recreated environments will bring to life the events, people, and ideals of our nation’s founding and engage people in the history and continuing relevance of the American Revolution. Located just steps away from Independence Hall, Carpenters’ Hall, and Franklin Court, the Museum will serve as a portal to the region’s many Revolutionary sites, sparking interest, providing context, and encouraging exploration. The Museum is a private, non-profit, and non-partisan organization. For more information, visit www.AmRevMuseum.org or call 877.740.1776.
About Keast & Hood
Keast & Hood is a structural engineering firm founded in 1953. Over the course of its history, the firm has earned a reputation for committed client service and high quality, technically astute engineering. In addition to structural design for new buildings, the firm is a nationally recognized leader in building diagnostics and the preservation, restoration, and rehabilitation of historic structures.
DesignPhiladelphia, a signature event of the Philadelphia Center for Architecture and Design, is the oldest design event of its kind in the country and annually showcases the work of over 400 practicing architects, designers, and creative professionals. Experience design in unexpected ways through more than 90 exhibitions, workshops, demonstrations, tours, talks, and events held in venues across the city. Learn about wide-ranging topics, including architecture, urban planning, landscape, graphic, multimedia, product, furniture design, fashion, and the like. This year’s Festival kicks off on October 7 and events run from October 6 – 16 (no programming on the 11th + 12th for Yom Kippur) For more information on planning an event, sponsoring, advertising, or attending the 2015 Festival, visit www.designphiladelphia.org.