Summer Travel Quest #23

Get Patrick Henry to Take a Selfie

At Colonial Williamsburg, Virginia —the largest living history museum in the U.S.—you can interact with historical figures. Sometimes in very interesting ways.
by Candyce H. Stapen Posted Jun 12th 2014 9:53a.m.
Candyce has written 30 travel books. She loves the discoveries that come with travel.

This from the politician who recently risked treason because he successfully argued in Virginia’s House of Burgesses for the repeal of the Stamp Act. At Charlton’s the year is 1766, a decade earlier than the rest of Colonial Williamsburg. Revolution is still a whisper, but Mr. Henry speaks freely in private chambers with other legislators and often—but not always—mingles with fellow citizens over coffee in Charlton’s public room in the afternoons from 3 to 5 p.m.  


The largest living history museum in the U.S., with 500 structures on 301 acres, Colonial Williamsburg recreates Williamsburg, the capital of Virginia, England’s oldest and richest colony, in the years prior to the American Revolution. The most fun comes from interacting with personages from the past. Check the weekly program guide to find Thomas Jefferson, George Washington and Patrick Henry. One-day admission is $43.95 for adults, $22 for ages 6-12 and free for kids younger than 6.

Eyeing the device that receives messages and conjures voices out of thin air, the patriot, who will later gain fame for declaring “Give me liberty, or give me death,” informs the guest that she’s lucky the witch codes were repealed in 1736, “else you would be hung by your neck or whipped.”

Nonetheless, Mr. Henry investigates the supernatural contraption. Intrigued, he states “1766 is a 4-mile-an-hour world. The Stamp Act was repealed in March, but we did not learn of it until 2 months later. Even with a good wind and a calm sea, it takes 6 weeks for news to cross the Atlantic.”

Smiling, the possible sorceress taps the screen, showing the future rebel how the tool can instantly capture her image without the need for artist, oils or canvas. Amazed, Mr. Henry gives in to temptation. He raises the otherworldly mechanism carefully and, with a renegade’s smile, takes a selfie.


Candyce H. Stapen has written 30 travel books. She loves the discoveries that come with travel.



21) Take Home a Pennsylvania Dutch Quilt

22) Sail on an America's Cup Yacht

23) Get Patrick Henry to Take a Selfie

24) Lounge on the World's Longest Porch

25) Witness Astronomical Fireworks in New Mexico

>> All 99 Summer Travel Quests


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A taste of life in Colonial Williamsburg
A taste of life in Colonial Williamsburg