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Philadelphia’s Revolutionary War Museum Readies A Replica Artifact For Publicity

(George Washington's marquee.  Photo provided)

(George Washington’s marquee. Photo provided)

John Ostapkovich John Ostapkovich
John Ostapkovich brings humor and wit, and a wealth of experience...
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By John Ostapkovich

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The Museum of the American Revolution is still months away from breaking ground at 3rd and Chestnut Streets in Old City Philadelphia (see related stories), but it is collaborating with Colonial Williamsburg on a project to spread the word about the planned tourist destination.

The project is a replica of a type of field tent called a marquee.  The original, in which George Washington spent a lot of his time as general of the Revolutionary Army, is in the museum’s collection.

But Scott Stevenson, the museum’s director of collections and interpretation, says the original will not be going on tour to promote the museum, which is scheduled to open in 2016.

“As a historic, very fragile textile, it has to remain in a climate-controlled, low-light environment in a museum,” he tells KYW Newsradio.  “It really isn’t possible to bring people inside a tent like this.”

But a newly made replica is being fabricated to get the word out about the museum.

“And we’re hoping to find sponsorship that would allow us to really take it on a national tour, to call attention to Washington’s other home,” he says.

Stevenson goes to Ireland this week to take possession of about 200 yards of linen, which will be cut and assembled in Williamsburg this summer by a group of crafters familiar with how the original tent would have been constructed.

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