Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center
The Fredericksburg Area Museum offers a variety of permanent exhibitions and three galleries that change throughout the year. Together, these ten spaces offer artifacts and exhibits that interpret the history of Fredericksburg and the surrounding region. Leading museum exhibits focus on the history of Native American tribes in Virginia, the arrival of Europeans and establishment of settlements throughout the region during the Colonial Period, Fredericksburg during the Revolutionary War and the Civil War, African American history from slavery to Civil Rights, the experience of residents during the World Wars and Great Depression, and the modern era. The museum is located in the former Town Hall/Market House that was built in the early 1800s. Additional exhibits can be found in the former Planters National Bank building which was constructed in 1927.
Backstory and Context
The 40-block area of the Historic District is comprised of homes, businesses, and governmental areas of the city's early residents. Since the 1730s, Market Square served a space for farmers and vendors to sell their goods to citizens of the town and surrounding areas. Town hall provided space for governmental and social functions in the city. The 2-story, 3-bay brick structure sits in front of Market Square, connected via sandstone steps. The two were intentionally designed to be linked architecturally.
FAMCC, chartered in 1985, is dedicated to researching, interpreting, teaching, and preserving the history, heritage, and culture of the Fredericksburg community. The organization stewards a collection spanning from a c. 8,000 BC Clovis point to materials from the 2004 Embrey Dam demolition. Holdings include textiles, photographs, household wares, and portraits.
In 2004, the Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center purchased the 1927 Planters National Bank building (now the Catherine W. Jones McKann Center). The bank, the next door building, and the Carley dress shop were retrofit in order to expand the FAMCC. By April of 2015, recession had hit the area of Fredericksburg. The economic situation spelled an uncertain future for the FAMCC, and operations were suspended. It reopened (with reduced hours) in 2016 during its "Cheers to 200 Years" event, which celebrated the bicentennial of historic Town hall.
"Fredericksburg Town Hall and Market Square." Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia. Accessed January 4, 2017. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fredericksburg_Town_Hall_and_Market_Square.
"History." Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center. Accessed January 4, 2017. http://www.famcc.org/visit/about/history/.
"National Register of Historic Places Registration Form - Fredericksburg Town Hall and Market Square." Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Last modified April 5, 1994. http://www.dhr.Virginia.gov/registers/Cities/Fredericksburg/111-0057_FredericksburgTownHallAndMarket....
Schemmer, Clint. "Fredericksburg Area Museum and Cultural Center to suspend operations; future uncertain." The Free Lance Star: Fredericksburg.com Web. 23 August 2016.