Booker T Washington National Monument

Booker T Washington National Monument

Things To Do

Guided Tours

Ranger guided walking tours of the historic area of the park are offered daily during the summer and on Saturdays and Sundays during the school year, as weather and staff availability permit. The tour times ar 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. These tours generally last 30 minutes to 1 hour.

Reservations are not required for small family groups; however organized groups must make tour reservations in advance.

To reserve a date for a program, call the park at (540) 721-2094. We suggest that you book your selected tour date as far in advance as possible. There is no fee for the program.

Calendar of Events

Starting April 5, ranger guided tours are offered during the week-end at 11:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.

May 10 – 8:00 a.m.
Bird Walk on Jack-O-Lantern Branch Trail
Take advantage of abundant birding resources and spring migration in the park by participating in a bird watch with fellow birders and experienced guides.

May 10 – 2:00 p.m.
Last Child In The Woods Book Review and Discussion
Join the park book club to discuss the section of essays in the book entitled Last Child in the Woods.

May 17- 2:00 p.m.
Tears of Freedom
Join a tour to discuss the anticipation and excitement surrounding the moment of emancipation on the Burroughs farm.

May 24 - 11:00 a.m.
Food, Fiber, and Flowers Garden Tour
Join a morning, ranger-led tour of the park’s kitchen garden to learn more about heirloom garden varieties of the mid-19th century.

June 14 – 10:00 a.m.
To Be a Ranger Junior Ranger Program (Ages 6-12)
Take a behind the scenes tour of the duties of a park ranger at Booker T. Washington National Monument. Pre-registration required.

June 21 – 11:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
Living History Programs
Attend an interpretive tour and experience interactive living history demonstrations from the mid-1800’s.

June 22 - 11:00 a.m.
Through a Woman’s Eyes
Learn about life on a mid-19th century plantation through a woman’s perspective.

July 5 – 2:00 p.m.
Jacktale Players
Join the Jacktale Players from Ferrum College to hear some local folklore about a boy named Jack.

July 6 – 11:00 a.m.
Beyond the Slave Cabin Door
Walk the grounds with a ranger and learn about some forms of resistance that enslaved people used on plantations.

July 12 – 10:00 a.m.
To Be a Leader Junior Ranger Program (Ages 6-12)
Learn about team building and the leadership styles of Booker T. Washington.

July 19 – 11:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
Living History Programs
Attend an interpretive tour and experience interactive living history demonstrations from the mid-1800’s.

August 2 – 10:00 a.m.
To Be a Naturalist Junior Ranger Program (Ages 6-12)
Hike the Jack-O-Lantern Branch Trail and study plants and animals like a naturalist. Participate in a stream activity to learn about the importance of clean water.

August 6 & 9 – 11:00 a.m.
Strange Fruit
Discover how Booker T. Washington reacted to the lynchings in the 1890s as the leader of the African-American people. This presentation is part of the Legacy Series, an adult education discussion group. NOTE: Some images & descriptions are graphic.

August 23 – 11:00 a.m. & 2:00 p.m.
Living History Programs
Attend an interpretive tour and experience interactive living history demonstrations from the mid-1800’s.

“Harvest Time” Festival
Saturday, September 13, 2008 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Living History Farm demonstrations, interpretive tours, children’s games and more will highlight the lifestyles of those who lived and worked on small Virginia tobacco plantations in the mid-19th century.

Christmas Days in Old Virginia


Booker T. Washington described Christmas in the mid-nineteenth century as he remembered it. "…In my opinion the real Christmas must be spent in the country, and I cannot but feel that there is in the Virginia Christmas atmosphere a fragrance and an influence which is not to be found elsewhere." Would you like to take a trip back to an Old Virginia Christmas? Join the National Park Service staff at Booker T. Washington National Monument for a trip back in time to a Virginia Christmas in 1864.

On this visit, you will learn how Christmas was celebrated during the American Civil War while enjoying costumed programs, children's activities and refreshments.

Children's activities will begin at 3 p.m. and continue until 5:30 p.m. More family friendly programs will begin with a special reading of Booker T. Washington's "Christmas Days in Old Virginia." Join us for programs about a Christmas of long ago.

Things To Do


Visitor Center
Begin your visit at the visitor center. Exhibits and an audio-visual presentation orient you to the life of Booker T. Washington. There is also a sales area with books and related items focusing on African American history. Uniformed park personnel and volunteers can answer your questions and assist you in making the most of your visit.

Plantation Trail
The Plantation Trail is a ¼ mile loop through the historic area. It passes by reconstructions of the nineteenth century farm buildings similar to those that stood on the Burroughs Plantation when Booker T. Washington lived here as a boy. You are invited to explore the open buildings and read from the park brochure about the kinds of activities that took place in each.

Jack-O-Lantern Branch Heritage Trail
In addition to the Plantation Trail, the monument provides an opportunity for a 1½ mile meandering walk through fields and forests on the Jack-O-Lantern Branch Trail. Trail guides are available at the visitor center.

Picnic Area
A picnic area in a wooded setting is available for your use. There you will find picnic tables, trash cans, and a water fountain. Restrooms are located in the visitor center.

Farm Area
Sheep, pigs, horses and chickens help provide the mood to explore this recreated 1850's tobacco farm. Come learn about the historic breeds of animals that would been here during Washington's time.

Garden Area
Come learn about the gardening techniques used by owners and slaves on the farm. The garden is an example of a typical subsistence garden of piedmont Virginia of the 1850s.

Book Club

The Book Club meets monthly from September through May. The membership is open to all. The focus of the book club is on titles describing slavery, Civil War, Reconstruction, Jim Crow, Civil Rights and Nature.

If you are interested in participating in the book club, you can purchase a copy of the book of the month in the Eastern National Bookstore located in the visitor center at Booker T. Washington National Monument. Copies of books may also be checked out at the Franklin County Library in Rocky Mount, Virginia.