Chesterfield mother launches history sightseeing blog for families

Updated: Sep. 26, 2019 at 1:15 PM EDT
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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - “The History Mom” makes it easy to squeeze in history lessons.

One Chesterfield blogger is tracking the “must see” history sites in the region - and breaking down the best experience to fit your kids and family.

In Virginia, history is everywhere. And so are the opportunities to learn, like at St. John’s Church in Richmond, where you can watch a re-enactment of Patrick Henry giving his famous “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death” speech.

“That was one of the most immersive experiences that I’ve ever had with my child in history,” said Jayda Justus, the mother behind The History Mom. "You actually get to sit in the seats, the very pews that George Washington, Patrick Henry sat in….Thomas Jefferson. And then the actors are sitting all with you so when they stand up to give that speech you’re sitting right beside them. "

Justus says listening to Patrick Henry’s speech is one of her favorite stops in Richmond.

She breaks down history sites all over and makes it easier for families to see them. From the easiest stroller paths at a site, to timing and pre-planning to make the experience smoother.

“To get some helpful hints on what might be age appropriate for a 10-year-old versus a 6-year-old versus a teenager and also some helpful hints on restaurants nearby, books to read before," said Justus.

And if you’re headed out of town, she may have you covered there as well.

“I write about things in the U.S. and Europe so far,” said Justus. “My family and I, we’ve traveled in several different countries in Europe so I write about those.”

“I also have a big emphasis on president and first lady sites,” said Justus. “So, presidential first lady sites, I really try to do those also.”

She says a great place to get history on the go is NBC12′s “How We Got Here" podcast.

“Kids think history is boring and some adults do as well,” said Justus. “Just facts and dates. But when you realize history is just about stories. Stories of someone living in that time, if you could put yourself in their shoes, then it becomes interesting and it gives you a different perspective. So I just love that the podcast does that.”

Justus shared top five favorite places to go for history in the Central Virginia area, after St. John’s Church.

  1. St John’s Church
  2. American Civil War Center at Tredegar and American Civil War Museum
  3. Virginia Museum of History and Culture
  4. National Battlefield Park
  5. Favorite day trip from RVA

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