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Film and Galleries at Jamestown

The events and environment of 17th-century Virginia colony come to life.

A silver-gilt steeple cup dating to 1616 in the Virginia Company of London exhibitNew experiences and engaging exhibits await at Jamestown Settlement, as the stories of real people and events unfold in refreshed permanent exhibition galleries that explore the convergence of Powhatan Indian, English and west central African cultures in 17th-century Virginia.

Begin your visit to Jamestown Settlement with the dramatic documentary film, 1607: A Nation Takes Root, shown every 30 minutes in the museum theater. The film traces the evolution of the Virginia Company that sponsored the Jamestown Colony, examines the relationship between the English colonists and the Powhatan Indians, and chronicles the arrival of the first recorded Africans in 1619.

“Bacon’s Rebellion” is shown every 20 minutes to tell the story of a 1676 uprising at Jamestown.

As part of a $10.6 million phased enhancement of the 30,000-square-foot exhibition space completed in 2019, expansive galleries incorporate new historical research, immersive design and innovative technology to connect visitors with an expanded storyline of early Virginia. Discover personal stories displayed on monitors, life-size screens and  projections in re-created settings.

Jamestown Settlement features a new one-of-a-kind 4-D multi-sensory, multi-layered projection theater where “Bacon’s Rebellion,” a 1676 armed rebellion of Virginia colonists led by Nathaniel Bacon against the rule of Governor William Berkeley, unfolds every 20 minutes during museum hours.

Exhibits feature an expanded collection of more than 500 period objects from Virginia, Europe and Africa – some on display for the first time – including portraits, documents, furnishings, toys, ceremonial and decorative objects, tools and weapons, and archaeological items. Dioramas and short films are accompanied by a one-of-a kind experiential theater and interactives that allow visitors to compare and contrast each of the three cultures, examine the impact of 1619 historical events that shaped Virginia.


Click on the image below to try our new quiz. If you were a 17th-century artifact from Powhatan, Angolan or English cultures, which would you be? Take the quiz and share the result.

Artifactually Yours quiz