Arlington House Museum
The Barbadian story, Arlington House – Museum is visually portrayed in a modern interactive museum, designed to international standards!
The Barbados Arlington House is described as a “Single House” which was originally constructed circa 1750 and is believed to have been the architectural model taken to Charlestown, South Carolina by its original Barbadian settlers in the late seventeenth century.
Although certainly a building of architectural interest, its three floors are packed with high tech “infotainment” to interactively educate and entertain visitors about the Barbadian legacy.
Directions to Get here:
» Drive north on Highway 1 from Bridgetown or Holetown and you can easily access Speightstown.
» Arlington House is a short walk from the public car park or Speightstown bus station.
» Ground Floor Theme – “Store Memories”
Free admission to the ground floor offers visitors the opportunity to “virtually” meet the business people of the town and of northern Barbados. Then you can go out on the street and find the varying personalities. The vegetable vendors on the main street continue to offer their produce as has been practiced for over two hundred years.
The “Store Memories” theme also provides a combination of historic prints and photographs. The photos of Bridgetown circa 1900 demonstrate typical business and shopping activities.
Our gift shop offer books of historical interest and other gift items, and is open to the general public.
» First Floor – “Speightstown Memories”
The “Speightstown Memories” room includes photos of old Speightstown, with details of the bustling nineteenth century schooners, jetties and trade. A focal point is the 1820 room sized “Bowen” map of Barbados; depicting names of early colonists and places of significance.
» First Floor – “Plantation Memories”
The Barbadian experience of colonisation, sugar and slavery is recounted in a totally unexpected artistic style as one enters the exhibit room. Then you are mysteriously invited to view a show in an informal cinema setting; thereafter you can browse seven interactive screens and several panel displays.
In the seventeenth century, Barbados boasted the reputation of being the “richest spote of lande in the worlde,” and Speightstown helped to make this happen, as a trading hub and stepping stone to the new world.
» Second Floor – “Wharf Memories”
This series of exhibits is a definite attraction with both children and adults.
Even though the theme and design of “Plantation Memories” was original and distinctive, you will be surprised when ascending stairs to arrive at a jetty on the second floor.
Meet and listen to an amazingly lifelike pirate, who recounts the story of the infamous Barbadian pirate captain – Stede Bonnet, and how they met their ignominious end in Carolina. Or how about manning a schooner helm and sailing through our interactive island chain? Feeding the virtual turtles and tropical fish that swim underneath the jetty is definitely not allowed!
There is also plenty of historical information regarding the attraction of Barbados as a busy commercial centre and port of choice for the past three hundred and fifty years.
Days of Operation: » Monday – Saturday
Open From: 10:00 AM
Open Till: 5:00 PM (last tour at 4:45pm)