Sneak Peek

“Here are a variety of amusements, a variety of things to be seen and done all day long . . . .”
                                                                                               —Northanger Abbey, Chapter 10

Complete information about our AGM offerings will be posted early in 2019. Among the engaging activities we have planned during your stay in Williamsburg, you may anticipate the following with confidence:

Special Interest Sessions

Photo © F. Lutz (courtesy University of Arizona Special Collections Library)
A number of optional talks and activities, included in the registration fee, will explore topics tangential to or outside our central theme. Subjects will be wide-ranging and intriguing! The game of cricket in the 18th century; the Gothic novel collection at the University of Virginia; the commemorative activities underway as JASNA marks its 40th anniversary and the Jane Austen House Museum celebrates 70 years open to the public; expect all these and more!

A Cricket Demonstration

Photo © Colonial Williamsburg
Members of the Capital Cricket Club—the only known team specifically created to follow the rulebooks of the late 18th century—will set up a cricket pitch and demonstrate game play, walking you through each step. Hear historical anecdotes and learn how the game Jane Austen mentioned in Northanger Abbey differs markedly from the game you can observe today. (Weather permitting)

Special Events

Tickets for other tempting events, tours, and workshops will be available for purchase to help you tailor your AGM experience to your own taste.

A Murder Mystery Game

Sharpen your sleuthing skills in preparation for this exciting feature! Run like a workshop, with limited seating and tickets sold in advance, this Regency-set murder mystery will find you racing against time to unmask the killer in your midst before he—or she!—strikes again.

A Visit from President Jefferson

Bill Barker, Colonial Williamsburg’s celebrated first-person interpreter of Thomas Jefferson, will address attendees on Thursday evening, relating his experiences and vision of early 19th- century America. Gain insights into life as it was on this side of the Atlantic during Jane Austen’s adulthood.

A Glass Armonica Concert

Photo © Colonial Williamsburg
Musician Dean Shostak will enlighten us on the subject of this unusual instrument, which achieved fad status during Jane Austen’s lifetime. Invented by Benjamin Franklin, the armonica consists of a series of glass bowls turned on a spindle and played with moistened fingertips. Composers as renowned as Mozart and Beethoven wrote music for it, but it had fallen out of favor by the 1830s.

Northanger Abbey, the Musical

We are proud to bring you a fresh, lively, musical adaptation of Jane Austen’s novel, officially debuting at the AGM. Featuring a cast of talented local actors and musicians, it will bring Austen’s characters vividly to life and leave you humming the tunes for days afterwards. Plus, you’ll have a chance to talk with some of the actors and production team on Saturday evening, ask questions, and learn what went on behind the scenes to develop and stage the show.

A Selection of Tours and Workshops

Photo © Colonial Williamsburg
The local area, known as the Historic Triangle, is a museum-lover’s paradise. Visit the site of the first permanent English settlement at Jamestown, the grounds of the critical Siege of Yorktown, and the campus of William and Mary, founded in 1693 and the only university in America with a royal charter. Gain insights into the restoration of Colonial Williamsburg in the 1930s, as well as the town’s history during the American Revolution and American Civil War. In addition to tours, our schedule will feature a number of exciting workshops. From scrapbooking, to fashion, to dancing, we will offer you opportunities to create keepsakes, learn period-correct crafts, and prepare to look your best at the ball.

AGM Schedule Preview

Already daydreaming about an autumn stroll through Williamsburg, or researching flights or train schedules? This at-a-glance schedule will help you plan. The AGM proper is highlighted in yellow, with related activities scheduled the day before and after. The schedule is preliminary and subject to change—please check back in the coming months to see additions and updates.