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American History Comes Alive With Historic VTS Audio Tour

10/5/2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Press Release Contact: Curtis Prather
Tel: 703-461-1782
Email: cprather@vts.edu

Virginia Theological Seminary is pleased to welcome the arrival of a self-managed audio tour of the story of VTS for guests coming to visit our historic and beautiful campus.

“‘We want to share the Virginia Theological Seminary story,” said Dean and President, the Very Rev. Ian S. Markham. “This Audio Tour is a way of reaching out to those interested in American History, the Civil War, and the history of the Episcopal Church. In just over an hour, our guests will have the opportunity to stroll around our beautiful grounds and learn about this place.’”

Beginning today and continuing every day during normal hours of operation, visitors to the VTS campus will be able to check out audio hand-sets, with a map, from the VTS Welcome Center and experience first-hand one of Alexandria, Virginia’s most historically diverse and exciting landmarks.

Some of the highlights of the tour include Civil War era graffiti from the time when the campus was used as a hospital by the U.S. Army; the residence where Phillips Brooks, the composer of the famous Christmas carol, ”O Little Town of Bethlehem,” lived as a student; the “jewel” of the campus, The Bishop Payne Library, home to many rare books, important archeological artifacts –Assyrian reliefs dating back to 800 BC – and the African American Episcopal Historical Collection; and fascinating accounts about individuals such as Walt Whitman and Francis Scott Key, as well as the story of the birth of the Episcopal Church in America.

The hand-sets for the self-guided tour include campus photographs and video, as well as audio narratives from four members of the VTS community—Dr. Robert Prichard, Professor of Church History, our resident historian and a longtime-member of the faculty; Ms. Julia Randle, the seminary’s archivist; Dr. Judy Fentress-Williams, Professor of Old Testament; and the Rev. Matthew Hanisian, the 2009 Student Body President.

Acoustiguide, Inc. is the American subsidiary of the Espro Acoustiguide Group. More than 50 years ago Acoustiguide invented the audio tour, and the company has remained at the leading edge of creativity and technology ever since. For more information, visit www.acoustiguide.com.

Founded in 1823, Virginia Theological Seminary is the largest of the 11 accredited seminaries of the Episcopal Church. The school prepares men and women, representing more than 40 different dioceses and nine different countries, for service in the Church, both as ordained and lay ministers, and offers a number of professional degree programs and diplomas.