WILLIAMSBURG, Va., April 25, 2018 — On Saturday, May 12, Jamestown Settlement and Historic Jamestowne will collaborate to offer a range of programs marking the 411th anniversary of the 1607 founding of America’s first permanent English settlement. “Jamestown Day” features one of Jamestown Settlement’s ships sailing in the James River and Historic Jamestowne’s ongoing archaeological discoveries of the 1607 fort. A variety of family-friendly interpretive programs on Powhatan and English trade and weaponry, and military and maritime demonstrations will take place at both sites.
“Jamestown Day” is sponsored by Jamestown Settlement, a living–history museum of 17th–century Virginia administered by the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Jamestown–Yorktown Foundation, in partnership with Historic Jamestowne, site of the original 1607 settlement jointly administered by the National Park Service and Jamestown Rediscovery on behalf of Preservation Virginia.
While there is separate admission to Jamestown Settlement and Historic Jamestowne, a four-site value ticket to Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement, as well as Yorktown Battlefield and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, is available on “Jamestown Day” and throughout the year.
At the ships’ pier, visitors can see re-creations of the three ships – designated “the official fleet of the Commonwealth” – that brought English colonists to Virginia in 1607. An artillery salute on Saturday, May 12, will mark the 10 a.m. departure of the Godspeed to set sail in the James River. Visitors can board and explore the other two ships, Discovery and the Susan Constant. Special programs on Jamestown Day will include “A Sea Grammar,” offering opportunities to learn the skills of a 17th-century mariner, and demonstrations of celestial navigation.
Saturday’s events also feature military drills and interpretive demonstrations on Powhatan Indian and English trade, weaponry and fire-starting. Visitors are welcome to explore expansive gallery exhibits, including new interactive displays that compare and contrast the Powhatan Indian, English and Angolan cultures that converged in 1600s Virginia.
“Jamestown Day” at Historic Jamestowne on Saturday, May 12, will feature tours, demonstrations and ongoing archaeological excavations of the 1607 James Fort, allowing guests to share in the moments of discovery while interacting with archaeologists on site. Guests can meet English colonist Joan Pierce and interact with an American Indian interpreter. A variety of ranger tours and programs highlighting the history of the first settlement will be available throughout the day, including costumed glassblowers at the Glasshouse showcasing one of America’s first industries.
On Sunday, May 13, Historic Jamestowne will offer opportunities to tour the Visitor Center, the Nathalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium Museum, Memorial Church, Glasshouse, and, at 10 a.m., 12:30 and 3 p.m., take part in programs with a first-person interpreter portraying John Rolfe.
Separate Admission to Jamestown Settlement and Historic Jamestowne
There is a separate admission fee to visit Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement. Free parking is available at both sites. Admission to Jamestown Settlement, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, is $17.00 for adults and $8.00 for ages 6 through 12, and free for children under 6. Residents of James City County, York County and the City of Williamsburg, including College of William and Mary students, receive free admission with proof of residency.
Open 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Historic Jamestowne adult admission is $14.00 and includes Yorktown Battlefield. National Parks passes and Preservation Virginia memberships are accepted, but a $5.00 fee may apply for entrance to Historic Jamestowne. Children under age 16 are admitted free.
A four-site value ticket, available at Historic Jamestowne, Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, is $39.50 for adults, $27.50 for ages 13-15 and $14.25 for ages 6-12 and offers seven consecutive days of admission to all four sites: Historic Jamestowne, Jamestown Settlement, the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown and Yorktown Battlefield.
For more information about Historic Jamestowne, call (757) 229-4997 or (757) 898-2410 or visit www.historicjamestowne.org or www.nps.gov/colo. For more information about Jamestown Settlement, call (888) 593-4682 toll-free or visit www.historyisfun.org. For more information about the Jamestown Day event and activities, visit www.historyisfun.org/jamestown-settlement/jamestown-day/.
MAY 12 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Explore Museum Galleries. Enjoy an introductory film and expansive gallery exhibits, featuring more than 500 artifacts and new interactive displays, which tell the Jamestown story in the context of the Powhatan Indian, English and African cultures that converged in the 1600s.
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Living-History Interpretive Demonstrations. Visit the re-created Powhatan Indian village, 1607 ships and colonial fort where costumed historical interpreters present hands–on programs and demonstrations, including cooking, navigation and matchlock musket–firing.
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Trade Between Cultures. Could you make a deal when trying to communicate across different languages? Learn about trade in the 17th century between the Powhatan and the English in the re-created fort.
10 a.m.: Godspeed Sets Sail. An artillery salute from the ships’ pier signals the departure of Godspeed, one of Jamestown Settlement’s replica ships, to demonstrate sailing maneuvers in the James River through mid–afternoon. (Weather permitting.)
11 a.m.: Comparative Weaponry. Musket or bow, tomahawk or sword? Behind the re-created fort, historical interpreters compare and contrast 17th-century weapons of war.
1 p.m.: Celestial Navigation. At the ships’ pier, take a “noon sighting” and learn how English sailors navigated across the ocean in the 17th century.
2 p.m.: Defending the Colony. At Jamestown, every man was also a soldier. Join in with the soldiers in the re-created fort to get first-hand training in defending the colony.
3 p.m.: A Sea Grammar. At the ships’ pier, try your hand at some of the skills necessary to be a 17th-century mariner.
4 p.m.: Comparative Fire-starting. Fire was a crucial tool for daily survival in the 17th century. In the re-created Powhatan Indian village, learn how an Englishman and a Powhatan would have started their fires 400 years ago.
MAY 12 SCHEDULE OF EVENTS
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Explore America’s Birthplace. Discover the story of Jamestown by touring the Visitor Center exhibition gallery and the Nathalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium Museum, Memorial Church and archaeological site of the 1607 James Fort, as well as the waysides of New Towne. (Also available Sunday, May 13.)
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Free Enterprise and Early Industries. Experience the work of craftsmen at the Glasshouse and James Fort site as they demonstrate glassmaking, blacksmithing and coopering as practiced during Jamestown’s early years. (Glassmaking also available Sunday, May 13.)
10 a.m. to Noon and 1 to 4 p.m.: Children’s Dig Box. This “field work” for children will be focused around a simulated archaeology dig. Here, kids will practice digging techniques, participate in screening activities and develop the knowledge necessary to identify archaeological features, artifacts and stratigraphy.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Hands on the Past. The Ed Shed is an interactive space where kids and families can share in the moment of discovery and examine real artifacts found at the site. Enjoy an array of hands-on activities, such as pottery mending or screening for artifacts, to learn more about the importance of archaeology and conservation.
9:30 a.m. and Noon: Ranger Walking Tour. Take a guided Park Ranger tour to gain unique perspectives on the history of Jamestown.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: “The Buried Truth.” Share in the moment of discovery at the original 1607 James Fort. Meet the Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologists to learn about ongoing excavations and the latest discoveries.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Native Lifeways of the Chesapeake. Meet Dan Firehawk Abbott of the Nanticoke people of Maryland’s Eastern Shore to learn about the material culture and lifeways of Tidewater Algonquians and their interactions with the settlers of Jamestown.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Forged in History. Blacksmithing was one of the earliest trades to be practiced at Jamestown. Join blacksmiths Shel Browder and Steve Mankowski for demonstrations and a discussion of the types of work that went on at the site of the original James Fort forge.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: “Hoops and Staves.” Join cooper Marshall Scheetz as he demonstrates traditional methods and tools in creating buckets, barrels and casks.
10 a.m. & 12:30 p.m. (and roving about during the day): Meet Joan Pierce. Arriving on the ship Blessing in August of 1609, Joan Pierce remembers her first winter as a “starving time” – when 340 colonists were reduced to 60. Mistress Pierce’s first-person account will give voice to the early colonists and the challenges met by one of the earliest female settlers in colonial Virginia.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: A New Life in the New World. Learn firsthand about the trials of the first English settlers and their experiences exploring the Chesapeake from Anas Todkill, one of the settlers who explored the bay with Captain John Smith.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Artifact Adventures at the Archaearium. Join archaeological curators to learn how artifacts make it from the field to exhibit and learn about the tools used to conserve them at the Nathalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium. Assist the curators in sorting through the smallest excavated material to find animal bones, shell and seeds for clues to fort life in the 17th century.
11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.: Archaeologist Walking Tour. Join an archaeologist for an in-depth tour of the 1607 fort site and learn about this season’s excavations and new discoveries. (Tour begins at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. Sunday, May 13.)
2:00 p.m.: Ecology at Jamestown: A Nature Tour. Join environmental scientist Kevin McCurley on a nature tour at Historic Jamestowne. Learn how to identify local flora and fauna, and how English settlers and Powhatan Indians utilized these resources hundreds of years ago.
3:00 p.m.: First Africans Walking Tour. This walking tour of “New Town” will focus on the arrival of the first Africans in Virginia in 1619. Of the nine Africans listed at Jamestown by 1625, only one was identified by name – a woman named Angela, also referred to as Angelo in historic records. Recent archaeology has investigated the site of where she lived and worked.