Historical Attractions

Fords Theatre NW Washington

Where is it at?

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Fords Theatre
511 Tenth St, NW
NW Washington
DC
20004
Tel: 202-347-4833

Where are we going today?

When it comes to American history, there are many poignant, and fascinating moments, and one of these has to be the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln in the Ford's Theatre. Kids can now experience history with their own eyes when you visit Ford's Theatre in Washington D.C.

It was back in 1865 that the history changing event occurred, and now families can visit during the day to see the site for themselves, and visit the world-class museum where you can learn all about the man himself, and that fateful day.

During the evenings, the theatre is still a working theatre, and often has shows that you can enjoy, to experience the atmosphere for yourself!

The Ford's Theatre Museum houses an incredible collection of historic artifacts, as well as interactive exhibits, that tell the story of Lincoln's presidency.

The museum uses recreations, as well as 3D figures and video to transport you back to 19th century Washington, where you can follow that great man from when he arrived back in 1861.

Some of the exhibits at Ford's Theatre that you can explore are the Presidential cabinet, and hear all about what life really was like in the White House. Kids can read about Civil War milestones, and head some of the great speeches that changed the nation.

Don't miss the deringer that John Wilkes Booth actually used, as well as the very clothes President Lincoln was wearing the night he was shot. Pretty amazing to see it in person!

Get up close to history, and stand in the very spot one of the most significant events in US history happened - kids will get so much more out of a visit than reading a history book!

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How much does it cost?

  • Adults$3
  • Children$3
LAST UPDATED 2016

When can we go?

9am - 4:30pm

March to July for the museum

Teachers corner

The Ford’s Theatre Society education initiatives explore the leadership and legacy of Abraham Lincoln and the world of Civil War Washington through performance and engagement with primary sources. Visit our website for more information..

I'm Hungry!

Concessions are available in the theatre lobby and the Center for Education and Leadership gift shop. Make sure you only take bottled water into the exhibit and historic areas.

Healthy Eating!

There are plenty of places in the city to pick up something healthy to enjoy before or after your experience!.

Any Top Tips?

Allow about 45 minutes to visit the museum, and another 30 minutes for the theatre. All tours are self-guided.

Need a little extra help?

There is an elevator from the museum to levels in the theatre, and they do their best to ensure accessibility for all.

Can I get one of those?

There is a gift shop where you can pick up educational items, and gifts all based around Lincoln and the theatre.

More information

Why not check out the theatre performance schedule and make a full day of it?.

What people are saying?

  • by

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    As I continue to tour Civil War sites in the Washington DC area, I visited Ford's Theater and the adjacent house where President Lincoln died.

    Although the theater is reconstructed to look as it did in April 1865 (after the assassination the theater closed and the building was used for other purposes) i very much got a feeling of authenticity. The history provided was fascinating and also quite moving. I really got a sense of that terrible night.

    Be sure to get to the adjacent house to which the President was carried after he was wounded....Read More

  • by

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    We thoroughly enjoyed A Christmas Carol and will likely make it a family tradition. There is plenty of parking underneath and across the street. Plan to dine at one of the many excellent restaurants in the area before or at after your event. I would probably pick a balcony seat next time but plan on a rather tight seating. The museum on the floor below is a must so plan 30 minutes before the show. You can take pictures of the theatre and the stage just as long as there are no actors on stage.

  • by

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    The history of the building and the way it has been renovated while still keeping the integrity is amazing. This is a wonderful but sad place all in one and a great stop for anyone coming through DC. You can also visit the building across the street where Lincoln died.

  • by

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    I've been to this theatre multiple times to watch plays. It's a small venue so I'm sure there aren't too many bad seats in this place. It does kind of suck to sit behind one of the pillars in the orchestra area, which I've had to do once.

    It's always super crowded in the lobby right before showtime, but the lines move pretty quickly, and things move along easily.

    I always want to order one of the slushies from the gift shop, but they only allow water in the theater. Such a tease! I guess during the summer I can get one to go.

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    This is really one of the MUST DO museums in DC. First, it isn't just the theater. It is the museum before the theater, the Petersen house across the street and the museum next to the Petersen house. I had no idea there was an additional museum across the street. Both museums are very informative. I recommend getting a ticket for as early as possible. You must have an entry ticket which can be purchased on line or at the ticket office. We took the audio tour, and although it was very informative I am not sure it had anything extra that wasn't already...Read More

Submit a review

by Robert Andrews

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As I continue to tour Civil War sites in the Washington DC area, I visited Ford's Theater and the adjacent house where President Lincoln died.

Although the theater is reconstructed to look as it did in April 1865 (after the assassination the theater closed and the building was used for other purposes) i very much got a feeling of authenticity. The history provided was fascinating and also quite moving. I really got a sense of that terrible night.

Be sure to get to the adjacent house to which the President was carried after he was wounded.

The whole experience is somber (as it should be) and absolutely worth seeing.

by Travelationship

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This is really one of the MUST DO museums in DC. First, it isn't just the theater. It is the museum before the theater, the Petersen house across the street and the museum next to the Petersen house. I had no idea there was an additional museum across the street. Both museums are very informative. I recommend getting a ticket for as early as possible. You must have an entry ticket which can be purchased on line or at the ticket office. We took the audio tour, and although it was very informative I am not sure it had anything extra that wasn't already presented at the exhibits. The one place in particular I did find the audio tour to have more info was the theater itself. So maybe for that portion the audio tour is worth it. The line outside the theater is for those already holding a ticket. If you do not have a ticket go inside and find out the next available ticket time - DO NOT wait in the outside line if you don't have an entry ticket. You will thoroughly upset to have wasted your time. Also, dates and times are sold far in advance. Plan accordingly. - Travelationship

The Weather

Monday

Conditions: Overcast
Temp: 71° F / 22° C
Humidity: 74 %
Wind: SSE - 9 MPH

Tuesday

Conditions: Chance of Rain
Temp: 72° F / 22° C
Humidity: 60 %
Wind: W - 5 MPH

Wednesday

Conditions: Clear
Temp: 75° F / 24° C
Humidity: 64 %
Wind: E - 7 MPH

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