Special Exhibitions

Special exhibitions offer opportunities for in-depth exploration of subject areas related to museum exhibition themes and to display artifacts on loan from institutions in the United States and abroad.


Bartering for a Continent

Jamestown Settlement Special Exhibition

Bartering for a Continent

“Bartering for a Continent: How Anglo-Indian Trade Shaped America,” June 4-December 10, 2016, explores the importance of trade between American Indians and English colonists, from the founding of Jamestown through the American Revolution, and the role of Virginia in the development of a new world of exchange in goods and commodities in North America.
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The Chesapeake Log Canoe

A Jamestown Settlement Special Exhibition in Partnership With The Mariners' Museum

The Chesapeake Log Canoe

“Working and Racing on the Bay: The Chesapeake Log Canoe” was on exhibit at Jamestown Settlement September 19, 2014, through September 8, 2015. Curated by The Mariners’ Museum in Newport News, Va., and featuring objects from its collection, the yearlong exhibition traced the evolution of the dugout canoe through the centuries, from the watercraft of the Powhatan people 400 years ago to multi-log trade vessels and work and racing boats. Read More…


Jamestown's Legacy to the American Revolution

Jamestown's Legacy to the American Revolution

A special exhibition at Jamestown Settlement, March 1, 2013-January 20, 2014. Featuring more than 60 objects destined for exhibit at the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown®, “Jamestown’s Legacy to the American Revolution,” examined the lives of Revolutionary War-era descendants of people associated with 17th-century Jamestown, colonial Virginia's first capital. Read More…


The 17th-Century: Gateway to the Modern World

The 17th-Century: Gateway to the Modern World

The transformational impact of scientific advances, economic developments and social change found expression in “The 17th Century: Gateway to the Modern World,” a special exhibition at Jamestown Settlement organized by the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in cooperation with the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation. Sixty-five objects from the VMFA collection were selected to illustrate seven themes in the exhibition, which ran November 16, 2011, through August 15, 2012. Read More…


Werowocomoco: Seat of Power

Werowocomoco: Seat of Power

Artifacts spanning 10,000 years from Werowocomoco – Virginia’s original “capital” city and the principal residence of Powhatan, paramount chief of 30-some Indian tribes in Virginia’s coastal region at the time English colonists arrived in 1607 – were shown for the first time in a museum setting in the Jamestown Settlement special exhibition “Werowocomoco: Seat of Power” from May 15, 2010, through June 30, 2011. Read More…


A New World: England's First View of America

A New World: England's First View of America

Jamestown Settlement exhibited the 16th-century watercolor drawings of John White from the British Museum’s “A New World: England’s First View of America” July 15 through October 15, 2008. The drawings are the earliest visual record by an Englishman of the flora, fauna and people of the New World. Read More…


Jamestown and Bermuda: Virginia Company Colonies

Jamestown and Bermuda: Virginia Company Colonies

This special exhibition, March 1- October 15, 2009, explored the shared history and links between England’s first two permanent colonies in the New World, on the occasion of Bermuda’s 400th anniversary. The exhibition featured more than two dozen artifacts from the Sea Venture underwater archaeological site and objects associated with early government and the Church of England in Virginia and Bermuda. Read More…


The World of 1607

The World of 1607

“The World of 1607,” a special exhibition at Jamestown Settlement from April 2007 to April 2008, put the founding of Jamestown in a global context and focused on worldwide cultural developments during the late 16th and early 17th centuries. Presented in four distinct cycles, the exhibition offered a unique opportunity to view early Jamestown as a crossroads of peoples and empires, trade routes and ways of war, and cosmologies and technologies. Read More…