This site a collaborative project of George Washington's Mount Vernon and the Center for History and New Media, and is made possible through the generous support of Donald and Nancy de Laski.

If you have questions about the site, contact us.


Center for History and New Media

Sharon Leon (Executive Producer, CHNM) is Director of Public Projects at CHNM and Research Assistant Professor in the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University. Her research interests include the history of religion in the U.S., especially Roman Catholicism, history of science and twentieth century cultural history. She received her bachelor's degree from Georgetown University and her doctorate in American Studies at the University of Minnesota in 2004. Her book manuscript on US Catholics and the Eugenics Movement is forthcoming from the University of Chicago Press. Her work has appeared in Church History and the Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences. She has oversight for the design and development of Martha Washington -- a Life.

Rosemarie Zagarri (Senior Historian, CHNM) is a Professor in the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University. She received her Ph.D. from Yale University in 1984. She is the author of Revolutionary Backlash: Women and Politics in the Early American Republic (University of Pennsylvania Press, 2007), The Politics of Size: Representation in the United States, 1776-1850 (Cornell University Press, 1987) and A Woman’s Dilemma: Mercy Otis Warren and the American Revolution (Harlan Davidson, 1995) and the editor of David Humphreys’ “Life of General Washington” with George Washington’s “Remarks” (University of George Press, 1991; ppb. 2006). She has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the American Antiquarian Society, and the American Philosophical Society. She has published scholarly articles in the Journal of American History, American Quarterly, and the William & Mary Quarterly as well as in several edited collections. In 1992, she received the Outstanding Article Prize, awarded by the Southeastern Eighteenth-Century Studies Association, for “Morals, Manners, and the Republican Mother.” In Spring 1993, the Fulbright Foundation appointed her to the Thomas Jefferson Chair in American Studies at the University of Amsterdam. She has served on the editorial boards of American Quarterly, the Journal of the Early Republic, and the University of Virginia Press. She is currently a member of the Council of the Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture. She has appeared on CSPAN’s “Morning Journal” and on the PBS “American Experience” documentary, “George Washington: The Man who Wouldn’t Be King.” Her most recent project is “The Other Indies: India and the Post-colonial Experience of the Early American Republic.” Zagarri authored of the biographical narrative portion of the website and consulted on the selection and description of items in the archive, as well as on the content of the teaching modules.

James Ashton (Graduate Research Assistant, CHNM) is a graduate student in the doctoral program in history at Johns Hopkins University, and received his Masters Degree in history from George Mason University. His research interests include early American and nineteenth century cultural history, especially the history of expressive cultural forms such as music. Ashton assisted in the research and selection of the content for the site, as well as the technical preparation of all site materials.

Chris Raymond (Web Designer, CHNM) has diverse experience creating effective, award-winning visual communications as a graphic designer, web designer, science museum exhibit researcher/writer, science journalist, and publications director for an association of hands-on science museums. She has a Ph.D. in sociology from Cornell University with emphasis in mass media and sociology of science; her dissertation examined coverage of occupational health in the mainstream and alternative press. Raymond developed the design and all of the visual elements of the site.

Ken Albers (Web Developer, CHNM) is a graduate student in the doctoral program in history at George Mason University. His research interests include late nineteenth and early twentieth social and cultural American history, as well as the uses and impact of digital media in research and education. Albers implemented the design and did all of the custom programming for the website on the Omeka web publishing platform.

About the Center for History and New Media

Since 1994 under the founding direction of Roy Rosenzweig, the Center for History and New Media (CHNM) at George Mason University has used digital media and computer technology to democratize history—to incorporate multiple voices, reach diverse audiences, and encourage popular participation in presenting and preserving the past.

CHNM uses digital media and technology to preserve and present history online, transform scholarship across the humanities, and advance historical education and understanding. Each year CHNM’s many project websites receive over 16 million visitors, and over a million people rely on its digital tools to teach, learn, and conduct research.

CHNM’s work has been recognized with major awards and grants from the American Historical Association, the National Humanities Center, the National Endowment for the Humanities, the Department of Education, the Library of Congress, the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the Mellon, Sloan, Hewlett, Rockefeller, Gould, Delmas, and Kellogg foundations.

About Mount Vernon:

Mount Vernon is owned and maintained in trust for the people of the United States by the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association, a private, non-profit organization founded in 1853 by Ann Pamela Cunningham. The Association is the oldest national historic preservation organization in the country, and it has always been in the forefront of the restoration field. It is directed by a Board of Regents, comprised solely of women, who represent over 30 states. A Board of Advisors of prominent citizens from across the country meets twice a year to provide additional input on Mount Vernon's governance. The estate, gift shops and dining facilities are operated by about 450 paid employees and over 400 volunteers.

Mount Vernon is the most popular historic estate in America and is open 365 days a year. Mount Vernon does not accept grants from federal, state or local governments, and no tax dollars are expended to support its purposes. Primary sources of income are revenue from the retail and dining facilities, ticket sales, and donations from foundations, corporations, and individuals.

The estate, gardens and farm of Mount Vernon totaled some 8,000 acres in the 18th century. Today, roughly 500 acres of this historic estate have been preserved 16 miles south of Washington, D.C., on the banks of the Potomac River. Visitors can see 20 structures and 50 acres of gardens as they existed in 1799. The estate also includes a museum, the tombs of George and Martha Washington, Washington's greenhouse, an outdoor exhibit devoted to American agriculture as practiced by Washington, the nation's most important memorial to the accomplishments of 18th-century slaves, and a collection which features numerous decorative and domestic artifacts. Mount Vernon welcomes an average of 1,000,000 visitors each year.