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“Wonderful History”

Stabler-Leadbeater Apothecary Museum
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Civil War History Walking Tour of Alexandria
Ranked #6 of 90 things to do in Alexandria
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The Apothecary served local customers, including the Washingtons and Robert E. Lee, between 1792 and 1933. The shop was transformed into a museum shortly after its closing and visitors can still view the original ingredients, products, and documents left behind by this 141-year-old family business.
Bluffton, Ohio
Level 5 Contributor
96 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 57 helpful votes
“Wonderful History”
Reviewed May 6, 2013

Many items well preserved and the history was interesting, but overall not a great variety of apothecary items. Everything was to have been consistent with that time period and that would have certainly limited their inventory. Any pharmacist should make this a must.

Visited May 2013
Thank RWM72942
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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194 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
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English first
Level 6 Contributor
39 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 93 helpful votes
“Where Martha Washington got her castor oil”
Reviewed April 12, 2013

As a general rule, I avoid museum tours like the plaque. But this wonderful gem of an 18th century apothecary is the exception that proves the rule. Walking through old Town, the modest storefront at 105-107 South Fairfax Street has limited hours so check the official Alexandria government web site http://alexandriava.gov/historic/apothecary/default.aspx?id=36940
The cost of the docent guided 30 minute tour is only $5. What is amazing is how the owner had to walk away from his business during the Depression and just locked everything up. The four story warehouse just sat there until the City took it over. The first floor is just full of curious bottles but after the gift shop cashier turns into your tour guide, you get to cross of the roped area and go upstairs also. There you can see stuff like A written request from Martha Washington for some castor oil before she died. Even more intriguing are drawers labelled with exotic concoctions like ""Dragon's Blood"! - but they are out of stock of it for the last hundred years. Regular stuff for the 18th century is there like opium, mercury and sulfur
Truly a fascinating and informative tool with all kinds of cool medical tidbits. Take a walk back in time and see what Harry Potter would have seen.

Visited March 2013
2 Thank CHARM2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Middlebury, Vermont
Level 6 Contributor
132 reviews
57 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 119 helpful votes
“Very Unusual”
Reviewed April 4, 2013

We thought this place was very cool. It's an 18th Century apothecary that barely changed from the time it opened until it closed its doors in the 1930s. The retail section downstairs is all as it was, including a handwritten order from Martha Washington. Upstairs, the company ran a large mail order business for their own products. The medicinal ingredients are still in their storage containers, along with pill rollers, etc. Very interesting. We had an engaging woman guide us around. She knew her stuff. The young director is doing a good job, too.

Visited March 2013
2 Thank JMA07
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level 4 Contributor
32 reviews
5 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 28 helpful votes
“Amazing Find”
Reviewed March 17, 2013

We stumbled onto this place as we were paying for parking. My partner thought we should go inside, and I am quite glad we did. This old pharmacy is the same as it was 100 years ago. As a matter of fact, it was sealed up and kept exactly the same as it was left in 1933 (I believe). The guide was so knowledgeable and answered all the questions we had. I won't spoil it for you, but the second floor is amazing! There's even a registry that lists Robert E Lee and Martha Washington as clients! Definitely make a stop here for a different kind of experience.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank Addie314
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Lexington Park, Maryland
Level 4 Contributor
36 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 16 helpful votes
“very cool”
Reviewed March 14, 2013

everything was left in its state from the 1800's. Very cool to see the place almost just as it was from the period. Make sure to get a key to the city book at the visitors center if you are going to other museums. cost was $9 and worth if you so 2 or more tours.

Visited March 2013
1 Thank SarahS76
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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