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Yorktown Victory Center Prepares for New Name and Expanded Exhibit

WILLIAMSBURG, Virginia — The Yorktown Victory Center is rapidly moving toward completion of a three-year, $50 million project that will transform it into the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown.

A new introductory film and exhibition galleries will debut October 15-16 during the annual Yorktown Victory Celebration marking the 1781 Revolutionary War victory at Yorktown, at which time the 40-year-old museum will assume its new name and identity.

The plan for the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown includes a new 80,000-square-foot facility housing exhibit space, classrooms and visitor services; reconstruction and enhancement of the living-history Continental Army encampment and Revolution-era farm; outdoor event space; and new parking areas.

Museum operations transitioned to the new building in March 2015, followed by continued development of new gallery exhibits, the introductory film and the living-history areas, all planned for completion by late 2016.

The permanent exhibition galleries will engage visitors in the tumult, drama and promise of the Revolution through period artifacts and immersive environments, dioramas, interactive exhibits and short films.

Among the 500 artifacts to be exhibited are a Declaration of Independence broadside dating to July 1776; a coronation portrait of King George III; one of the two earliest known portraits done from life of an African enslaved in the 13 original colonies; and an extremely rare early southern American long rifle.

The reconstruction and enhancement of the Continental Army encampment and farm include an array of hands-on activities, from military drills to watering and weeding crops.

The encampment, which includes tents for soldiers and officers as well as surgeon’s and quartermaster’s quarters, is adding a drill field and an artillery demonstration.

The farm will have a larger house, kitchen and tobacco barn and a new building representing quarters for enslaved people.