WILLIAMSBURG, Va., March 11, 2020 — In just one weekend, visitors can experience centuries of military history during Jamestown Settlement’s time-honored “Military Through the Ages” on Saturday and Sunday, March 21-22, with this year’s event hosting a special USO Show presenting patriotic entertainment.
“Military Through the Ages,” held at Jamestown Settlement each year since 1984, will feature more than 500 re-enactors depicting armed forces of the past and present, from the first century all the way to modern-day soldiers with the Virginia Army National Guard. This unique chronological display of military history allows visitors to explore military encampments and interact with re-enactors to learn firsthand how uniforms, weapons and military tactics evolved through the centuries, as well as aspects of field communication and medical treatment.
USO Show Featuring Live Entertainment
Get a glimpse of this time-honored tradition to entertain the troops during Saturday and Sunday’s USO Show, with side-splitting comedy and morale-boosting music from World War I at 11 a.m., World War II at 2 p.m. and the Vietnam War at 4 p.m. A special patriotic performance from the Truetone Honeys will feature three classically trained female vocalists and a jazz ensemble that draw influence from the greatest female groups of the 20th century to deliver a show with tight harmonies and vintage style.
Timeline from the Medieval to Modern Times
More than 500 re-enactors will portray soldiers and military encounters from the medieval period, Hundred Years’ War, War of the Roses, American Revolution, War of 1812, Napoleonic Wars and Civil War. Re-enactors depicting World Wars I and II, and the Vietnam War will take visitors through the 20th century. The National Museum of the Marine Corps, U.S. Army Transportation Museum and Quartermaster Museum and the Virginia Army National Guard 111th Field Artillery will represent present day.
Artillery & Pass-in-Review
Comparative artillery-firing demonstrations – from a 17th-century swivel gun to a modern-day howitzer – will be presented both days, followed by a Flag Ceremony where visitors can participate in the unveiling and folding of the 20’-by-30’ Legacy Marker Heritage Flag honoring soldiers and civilians who served our country during WWI and WWII. A military pass-in-review will take place at 3 p.m. Sunday and feature recognition of re-enactor units judged on campsites and field demonstrations, as well as awards for visitor and re-enactors’ choice for the top re-enactment unit.
Military Aspects at Jamestown Settlement
Arms, armor and military accouterments of 17th-century Virginia can be seen year-round inside Jamestown Settlement’s extensive refreshed galleries, featuring films and interactive exhibits that tell the story of America’s first permanent English colony and of the Powhatan Indian, English and west central African cultures in 1600s Virginia. Families can experience hands-on activities in outdoor re-created settings, such as trying on armor in a 1610-14 English fort, grinding corn in a Powhatan Indian village and climbing on board a ship that brought English colonists to Virginia in 1607.
About Jamestown Settlement
Jamestown Settlement, open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. daily, is located on Route 31 just southwest of Williamsburg. Parking is free. “Military Through the Ages” is included with museum admission: $17.50 for adults, $8.25 for ages 6-12 and free for children under 6. Virginia residents can purchase the American Heritage Annual Pass online for $27.50 and $13.50, the cost of a single-day combination ticket to both Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown, a savings of more than 35 percent. Residents of James City County, York County and the City of Williamsburg, including William & Mary students, receive free admission with proof of residency. For more information, call toll-free (888) 593-4682 or (757) 253-4838, or visit historyisfun.org/jamestown-settlement/military-through-the-ages.
“Military Through the Ages” is made possible in part by a grant from James City County, with additional support from the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, Inc. Annual Fund.