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George Washington's 250-Year-Old Cherries Found Buried At Mount Vernon

maximus otter

Recovering policeman
Aug 9, 2001
Archaeologists found something incredibly rare in the cellar of George Washington's home at Mount Vernon: Two intact jars of cherries buried in the basement of the first U.S. president's house.


Cherries and a mystery liquid were found in the jar. And the cherries, [archaeologist] Boroughs said, actually look like cherries, even after hundreds of years.

"They're plump, they have flesh, they have pits and stems," Boroughs said. "They don't look as if they've been sitting in a bottle for 250 years, although they have."

The liquid inside even smelled like cherry blossoms. The liquid still needs to be tested, Boroughs said. And there is a small possibility it could've been a type of alcohol, like a brandy or cognac.

The jar was corked and buried sometime between 1758 and 1776, when both George and Martha Washington were living at the home, according to Boroughs.

He added that the method would've kept the fruit inside the bottle preserved for up to a year. It was one of the most popular ways to preserve berries and its how folks in colonial America preserved food before there were refrigerators.

Boroughs said that it could actually be possible to eat them, but "nobody wants to try."


maximus otter