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Press Releases

Operation George Washington

July 30, 2012

Visit the Spy Museum and the Home of America's First Spymaster!

Two of the region’s most popular attractions are teaming up once again in August to offer visitors and residents a way to save while saluting America’s first president—and spymaster in chief—George Washington. Guests who visit both George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate, Museum & Gardens and the International Spy Museum will save 50% off the ticket purchase at their second destination. To redeem the offer, guests must present their receipt for admission or ticket stub from one site when purchasing their ticket to the second site. Both Mount Vernon and the International Spy Museum will honor receipts and tickets throughout the month of August.

“We are very pleased to partner with Mount Vernon to bring to life the intelligence successes of George Washington, often called the father of American Intelligence,” said Peter Earnest, Executive Director of the International Spy Museum and former Senior CIA Officer. “One of our most cherished artifacts is a 1777 letter written by Washington directing the creation of a spy network in British occupied New York City so this partnership is a natural fit.”

In addition to Washington’s 1777 letter, the International Spy Museum has recently enhanced several exhibits with new spy gadgetry, documents and rich storytelling that illustrate the impact of intelligence successes and failures during the Civil War. In time for the 150th Commemoration of the war, From Ballroom to Battlefield: A Spy’s Eye View of the Civil War uncovers untold tales such as why Confederate General Lee was “blind” at Gettysburg and how a marching band helped the Confederates fool a Union General. These stories and more vividly illustrate the role of spies and spycraft throughout the war. Civil War era spy tech, such as the 19th century hand-held mobile communications device, signal flags, and codes and cipher tools, are also featured.

“Travelers and local families are looking for good values this summer, and they are also looking for powerful, only-in-D.C. experiences. With Operation: George Washington, we are providing them with both”, said Rebecca Aloisi, vice president for marketing at Mount Vernon. “Plus, we are encouraging them to think about George Washington in a new way.”

In Mount Vernon’s Donald W. Reynolds Education Center, visitors intrigued by Washington’s espionage efforts can catch a special movie, George Washington: Spymaster. Created by the History Channel and told from the perspective of an 18th-century spy, the movie covers Washington’s innovative use of spies and espionage during the Revolution. It is shown in the doorway of a tavern’s façade, a popular place for spying during the war. Beyond the spy-focused film, visitors can explore Mount Vernon’s latest exhibition, Hoecakes & Hospitality: Cooking with Martha Washington, or take a special behind-the- scenes walking tour that spotlights the top-secret locations featured in the film, “National Treasure: Book of Secrets” (additional fee applies).

Mount Vernon

Since 1860, more than 80 million visitors have made George Washington’s Mount Vernon Estate & Gardens the most popular historic home in America. Through thought-provoking tours, entertaining events, and stimulating educational programs on the Estate and in classrooms across the nation, Mount Vernon strives to preserve George Washington’s place in history as “First in War, First in Peace, and First in the Hearts of His Countrymen.” Mount Vernon is owned and operated by the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association, America’s oldest national preservation organization, founded in 1853. A picturesque drive to the southern end of the scenic George Washington Memorial Parkway, Mount Vernon is located just 16 miles from the nation’s capital.

Hours of operation: April-August, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.; March, September, October, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.; November – February, 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Regular admission rates: adults, $15.00; senior citizens, $14.00; children age 6-11, when accompanied by an adult, $7.00; and children under age 5, FREE. Admission fees, restaurant and retail proceeds, along with private donations, support the operation and restoration of Mount Vernon.

International Spy Museum

Featuring the largest permanent collection of international spy-related artifacts on public display, the International Spy Museum is the only public museum in the United States solely dedicated to espionage and the only one in the world to provide a global perspective on this profession.

The Museum is located at 800 F Street, NW in Washington, DC’s historic Penn Quarter, within 4 blocks of the National Mall, directly across the street from the National Portrait Gallery and American Art Museum, steps away from the Verizon Center, and within one block of FBI headquarters and Ford’s Theatre. The Museum is conveniently located near the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail station serviced by the red, yellow and green lines.

The International Spy Museum is open daily except Thanksgiving Day, Christmas Day, and New Year’s Day. Hours are subject to change; for the most up-to-date information visit or phone the 24-Hour SPY-Line: 202.393.7798 (202.EYE.SPY.U). Guests should plan to spend two hours visiting the Museum; all visits are self-paced. Join The Inner CircleTM at and enjoy exclusive membership benefits.

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