After stepping foot on the ground where America secured its independence in the final, decisive battle of the Revolutionary War, head to the Yorktown Victory Center to experience what post-war life was like in the newly free colonies. A living-history museum, the Yorktown Victory Center features indoor exhibitions, a Continental Army Encampment and a 1780s farm.
Two of the most fascinating exhibits include an early draft of the Declaration of Independence, before it was given to Congress members to sign, and one that covers the fates of British ships lost in the York River during the war. At the outdoors Continental Army Encampment, historical interpreters detail the lives of American soldiers at the end of the war. Also outdoors, a fully recreated 18th-century farm showcases the types of crops tended to in that time period and the lifestyles of many Americans during the war.
Construction on a new facility to house the museum is underway and will open as the American Revolutionary Museum at Yorktown in late 2016. The Yorktown Victory Center remains open during the construction. The museum is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, but is open until 6 p.m. from June 15 through August 15. Yorktown Victory Center is closed on Christmas and New Year's Day.