NOTE: Due to Covid-19, all galleries and exhibits are currently CLOSED.
The exceptions are the buildings in the South Yard as part of The Mere Distinction of Colour.
Mysteries of Montpelier
In the Joe and Marge Grills Gallery in the David M. Rubenstein Visitor Center, “Mysteries of Montpelier” aims to put visitors into the shoes of museum curators. Using artifacts that have been discovered across Montpelier’s 2,650 acres, guests will learn how these objects answer questions about the past and tell stories about who lived at Montpelier, what they ate, how they dressed, and more. Explore how Montpelier has changed through time with a wide range of artifacts, including Native American spear points, shoes owned by Dolley Madison, a bayonet from the gun of a Confederate soldier, and bowling pins from the duPont bowling alley. Visitors will also be able to create their own miniature museum displays, touch artifacts from the property, and take a picture at a selfie station!
On June 5, 2017, The Mere Distinction of Colour, a groundbreaking exhibition on slavery, opened to the public. The culmination of nearly two decades of historical and archaeological research, this exhibition explores how the legacy of slavery impacts today’s conversations about race, identity, and human rights. Visitors will also see Montpelier’s connection to the national story of slavery – and discover the economic, ideological, and political factors that cemented it in the newly-created American nation and Constitution.
Please note that at this time, only the South Yard structures are open to the public.
George Gilmore was born a slave at Montpelier in 1810. Following his emancipation after the Civil War, he purchased land across the street from what are now the gates of Montpelier, and built his family's cabin in 1873. In 2001, The Montpelier Foundation took control of the Gilmore Cabin and began the 4-year-long restoration process. In 2005, the Gilmore Cabin re-opened to the public and has since been a permanent installation of Montpelier.
The Gilmore Cabin is currently closed.
The 1910 Train Depot gives visitors a glimpse into the African American struggle for Civil Rights. Preserved to represent what it would have looked like during the Jim Crow era and located adjacent to the Montpelier gates, the Depot opened in 2010 as a permanent installation of the property.