Outdoor improvements planned at American Revolution Museum

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The facade of the new American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. The building currently serves as the Yorktown Victory Center. (Gregory Connolly/WYDaily)
The facade of what soon will be the new American Revolution Museum at Yorktown currently serves as the Yorktown Victory Center. (Photo by Gregory Connolly)

A new outdoor exhibit and visitor amenity areas at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown are expected to be completed early next year.

The Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation recently awarded a contract worth more than $2.8 million to Daniel & Company Inc., a Richmond firm, to serve as the general contractor for the project.

The project will include construction of living-history Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm elements, an informational pavilion, an amenities building and pathways within a four-acre space.

The Continental Army encampment will include tents for enlisted soldiers and officers, a historically accurate kitchen garden, a surgeon’s quarters and makeshift dwellings to represent shelter for the female relatives of soldiers.

New features also will include a drill field for visitor-participatory demonstrations of 18th-century military tactics and a 250-person amphitheater that will host artillery presentations.

The Revolution-era farm will feature crop fields, a new farmhouse, a 12- by 10-foot building to represent slave quarters, a tobacco barn and a utility shed.

A new informational pavilion will be constructed just outside the museum building to assist visitors with the transition from indoor galleries to the outdoor living-history areas.

When compared to current amenities at the Yorktown Victory Center, the new exhibits will significantly expand capacity for students and visitors to watch demonstrations and take part in activities.

Currently, outdoor living-history areas at the museum are operating in temporary spaces while the new construction is underway. Once completed, the areas will be located next to an 80,000-square-foot museum building that has been occupied since March 2015.

Permanent gallery exhibits will debut Oct.¬†15 and 16, when the name of facility’s name will change from Yorktown Victory Center to American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.