Pink Ribbons Adorn Mary Washington House Fence to Raise Breast Cancer Awareness
Fredericksburg, VA - Upon the death of her husband, Mary Ball Washington raised her five children as a single mother on the family farm across the Rappahannock River from Fredericksburg, Virginia.
It is evident that Mary was happy there, but after her children were grown, she gave into her son George’s wishes and relocated to a house he purchased for her in town. Mary lived 17 years in her house and lots on Charles Street where she gardened, stayed in touch with family and friends, received guests, and prayed for the safety of those fighting in the Revolutionary War.
On August 25, 1789 the mother of our first president died of “a malignancy of the breast”- today known as breast cancer. While many diseases have been eradicated or brought under control since that time, breast cancer continues to impact the lives of many each year.
For the past several years, Washington Heritage Museums has partnered with the Imaging Center for Women to raise breast cancer awareness and promote regular health exams and care.
Each October, the community is invited to participate in the display of Mary’s Ribbons. The fence of the Mary Washington House is adorned in pink ribbons to honor and remember those who have faced the struggles of breast cancer.
Participation is free of charge, and guests are encouraged to tie a ribbon to the fence of the Mary Washington House and add the honoree’s name to be listed in a Book of Honor and Remembrance. To place a ribbon on the fence in honor or remembrance of a loved one, please visit the Mary Washington House during tour hours. Ribbons are also available at Medical Imaging of Fredericksburg locations. Our social media pages will be updated regularly as the fence becomes covered in ribbons.
The community is invited to join us as we remember Mary, and so many others.