Learning from Home
Shadow puppet theater is an ancient artform that originated in Asia in the 1st millennium BCE. Shadow plays spread throughout Europe by the end of the seventeenth century. They became especially popular in Italy, Germany, France, and England, before making their way to America. Eliza Jumel likely would have seen a shadow puppet play on one of her trips to France, or perhaps at a theater in New York City. Shadow puppetry is a similar artform to silhouette portraiture.
On June 14, 1777, the Continental Congress officially adopted the first version of the red, white, and blue starred and striped flag with which we are familiar today. This first “American flag” featured thirteen white stars (representing the 13 American colonies) laid in a circle on a blue background and surrounded by thirteen red and white stripes.
During the eighteenth and nineteenth century, food was prepared in the Mansion’s basement kitchen. Today, you can grow many of the same types of flowers and vegetables that were grown on the grounds of the Mansion and used in culinary preparations. Learn how to make a self-watering seed pot to grow historic herbs and plants.