History Itinerary

U.S. history is written every day in Arlington. You may even make a little history while you’re here!

Proximity to the nation’s capital means Arlington echoes with the outline of U.S. history, from colonial days to the “Watergate garage” and beyond:

  1. Check out the Arlington Historical Museum’s model of a local Native American village.
  2. Visit the Ball-Sellers House Museum, built in the 1740s, a home that shows life in Virginia’s Colonial era.
  3. Learn how Union soldiers lived and protected Washington, D.C. at Fort C.F. Smith, which was constructed by Union Troops in early 1863.
  4. Peer inside the actual slave quarters at Arlington House, and find out how Maria Syphax connects one African-American family and their descendants to the very foundation of the United States. At Arlington National Cemetery, learn why Mrs. Lee’s flower garden is part of the true story of the founding of the cemetery. Visit the grave of Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall, President William Howard Taft and President John F. Kennedy who said, “History has made us friends.”
  5. See the majesty of the Marine Corps War Memorial, a bronze monument modeled after the famous photo of the flag raising on Mount Suribachi, Iwo Jima, that is dedicated to all Marines who have died to keep their country free.
  6. Visit the site of the Watergate parking garage at 1401 Wilson Blvd. that played a pivotal role in the Watergate scandal. An FBI official met a Washington Post reporter in the garage and provided information to expose wrongdoing that resulted in President Nixon’s resignation in 1974.
  7. Dine at Nam Viet, a Vietnamese restaurant situated in the Clarendon neighborhood which was the thriving hub of Vietnamese commerce and social activity that existed in the late 1970s and ‘80s
  8. The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Museum & Visitors Center in Arlington traces the history of the impact of drug addiction and federal law enforcement efforts, with free tours.
  9. At the National 9/11 Pentagon Memorial, learn about the 184 lives lost in the terrorist attack at the Pentagon on Sept. 11, 2001.
  10. Your story here! People come to Arlington from all over to add new pages to the history of the United States. Tell us your Arlington story using #stayarlington.
History has made us friends. John F. Kennedy