Alexandria commemorates important anniversaries in the history of our country and our city.

Page updated on Jul 9, 2018 at 9:26 AM

Historic Commemorations in Alexandria

The War of 1812

The War of 1812: The War of 1812 and the five-day occupation of Alexandria by British forces in 1814, had a profound effect on the town and its economy. Threatened with an invasion and with insufficient forces to defend the city, Alexandria’s Common Council surrendered to the British without resistance. The city avoided being burned, but the was required to surrender contents of stores and warehouses. Learn more about how the War and occupation affected Alexandria, and view some artifacts from the Historic Alexandria collections. (200th anniversary, 2012-2015).   

The Civil War

The Civil War: Witness to war and reunion, Alexandria's place in Civil War history is truly unique. The occupation of Alexandria by Union troops forever changed the social, cultural and economic fabric of the old seaport town. For four years Alexandria was an occupied city; enduring the longest military occupation by Union troops of any town during the conflict. The Office of Historic Alexandria commemorated the Civil War Sesquicentennial  through special events and exhibits, and by pulling together resources on the history of Alexandria in the Civil War. (150th anniversary, 2011-2015).

World War I

World War I The City of Alexandria is joining countless others around the world in commemorating the 100th anniversary of World War I. The war began in Europe in 1914, and the US entered the war in April of 1917. For a small city in the shadow of the Nation's capital, Alexandria was fully involved in World War I. Over 4,000 residents participated directly in uniform, while hundreds  more worked in war industries including aircraft construction, shipbuilding, and other war-related production. Effects of the war can still be seen in the City today. (100th anniversary, 2017-2018).

World War II

World War II: The Lyceum presents The Five Payne Brothers: An Alexandria Family & Their Service, to commemorate the 75th anniversary of American entry into World War II on December 7 1941 (75th anniversary, 2016).