History Sails Into Alexandria

Posted June 10, 2015 at 3:28pm

Almost 235 years after its maiden voyage, the Hermione sails again.  

An exact replica of the French frigate that brought the Marquis de Lafayette with news of France’s intervention in the American Revolutionary War against the British docked Wednesday in Alexandria, Va., where it will stay for three days. In 1780, the original Hermione, a 216-foot long French ship sailed from Rochefort, France, across the Atlantic and made port in Boston. The cargo of the ship was Lafayette, who helped rally the French crown to aid America in its revolution.  

In April this year, the second Hermione, whose voyage was conceived 20 years ago, traveled 27 days from France and docked in Yorktown, Va., before moving up the eastern seaboard. Alexandria marks the third stop on its 12-port journey. It heads next to Annapolis, Md., and Baltimore.  

As part of celebrations of Alexandria’s French connection, there will be events by the pier including musical performances, shipbuilding demonstrations and tours of the ship, plus a ball Saturday at Gadsby’s Tavern Museum on North Royal Street.  

Tickets are free but limited.