The cannons are set and the grand elliptical staircase is in place—all that’s left to do before the April 19th opening of the Museum of the American Revolution is to put several thousands pieces of artifacts in place.
That’s much easier said than done when said artifacts include one of President George Washington’s original tents—it will be one of the largest enclosed exhibits of its kind in the country—and the delicate sword of Revolutionary War hero General Hugh Mercer, who used the blade to fight off attackers during the Battle of Princeton.
The sword was presented to the museum at a ceremony yesterday by St. Andrew’s Society of Philadelphia, a charitable organization that dates back to 1747 and originally served to help Scottish immigrants new to Philadelphia. For 20 years, St. Andrew’s kept General Mercer’s sword in their office. It will now be on display in the Museum of the American Revolution on a long-term loan.
The sword and George Washington’s tent will be located on the second floor of the museum, which houses the U-shaped permanent exhibits. The museum is meant to be visited chronologically, starting with the pre-Revolution times, followed by the Revolutionary War, the war’s darkest hour, and finally, the new nation.
Here’s a sneak peek inside the museum as it stands today. As you can see, there’s a lot of work to do, but it’s all coming along quite quickly.
- The second level of the museum features the U-shaped permanent exhibits off the large atrium.
- The plaza of the museum features original cannons and was designed by local landscape architecture firm Olin.
- A built-in bench in the lobby of the museum looks out to Chestnut Street.
- The elliptical staircase was one of the most intricate design elements.
- This model ship was built at the Independence Seaport Museum, then taken apart and rebuilt for display at the Museum of the American Revolution. Kids will be able to walk along the ship.
- Watch: Robert A.M. Stern previews the Museum of the American Revolution [Curbed Philly]
- 5 fascinating facts you didn’t know about George Washington’s tent [Curbed Philly]
- The Museum of the American Revolution plaza is officially open [Curbed Philly]
- 82K artifacts unearthed at Museum of the American Revolution site [Curbed Philly]