The James Monroe Museum and Memorial Library, located in historic downtown Fredericksburg, Virginia, is the largest repository in the country for artifacts and documents related to the fifth president of the United States. The museum was first opened in 1927 by Monroe descendants as a place to house their own personal collections, which had been handed down through generations of the family. Eventually, the museum and its extensive collections were turned over to the Commonwealth of Virginia, and the museum is now administered by the University of Mary Washington.
Visitors have the opportunity to see some of the furnishings the Monroes brought to the White House during James Monroe’s term as president, including:
- The famous “Monroe Doctrine Desk,”
- Formal dinner and dessert china
- Monroe’s piano that dates back from 1790.
- Also learn about the Monroes’ relationship with Washingtonian society.
The museum belongs to the American Association of Museums, the American Association for State and Local History, and the Virginia Association of Museums. It is also on the National Register of Historic Places.
Rates, hours and directions
Members of the Friends of the James Monroe Museum receive free admission year-round (as well as a ten percent discount in the Museum Shop and other benefits). UMW employees & students also enter free with a UMW identification card.
The James Monroe Museum is fully handicap-accessible.