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In anticipation of the nation’s Bicentennial Celebration in 1976, the American Legion donated the two buildings to the City of Alexandria with the proviso that the site be maintained as a museum that meets the highest professional standards. (Today's museum has been twice accredited by the American Association of Museums.) After accepting the site, and completing a major restoration of the buildings, the city re-opened the museum to the public on George Washington’s birthday in 1976. The day's celebrations featured this George Washington Parade.