Aerial America is a stunningly beautiful television show on the Smithsonian Channel. The premise of the show is simple, use awe inspiring aerial photography to tell compelling stories of a state’s varied history. The series, which premiered in 2010, has featured each of the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and has also expanded into other destinations. The hour long episodes feature exquisite fly overs of historic sites and vistas, along with a compelling retelling of their significance.
On April 26, 2015, the episode devoted to Washington, D.C. aired for the first time. It was ironic date for the show to debut because not only is April 26 the same day John Wilkes Booth was cornered and killed, but the episode itself featured a five minute segment about Lincoln’s assassination and Booth’s escape. The episode provided beautiful shots of Ford’s Theatre, the Surratt Tavern, Dr. Mudd’s House, and even our own Rich Hill:
These flybys of Rich Hill show it as it appeared in about July of 2014, shortly after it was donated to Charles County. Since then a lot of work has been done to clear away the foliage that was invading the house and repair the large holes on the sides of the house. For contrast here is a picture of Rich Hill taken earlier this week (9/27/2015):
It was wonderful to see Rich Hill on TV and highlighted among the other important historic buildings relating to the assassination of Abraham Lincoln. Like Ford’s Theatre, the Surratt Tavern, and the Dr. Mudd House, Rich Hill is an important site in the story of one of the most dramatic events in American history. We’re grateful that Aerial America took the time (albeit briefly) to show, and, in their own way, promote this irreplaceable home. And just think how nice the aerial photography of Rich Hill will look when the house is complete rehabilitated!
You can visit the Aerial America page of the Smithsonian Channel’s website to check for future airings of the Washington, D.C. episode (next one appears to be November 28th at 5:00 pm EST). You can also purchase the episode through video streaming websites like Amazon Video.