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Published: March 31st 2011
5th Church in Jamestown
Colonial Virginia – Day 1
After our NC colonial history lesson in Edenton, we headed to colonial Virginia. Sophia took up residence at the Williamsburg KOA – one of best visited ever and we headed to Jamestown Settlement. Historic Jamestowne is managed by the National Park Service with the efforts to restore the settlement to it original form not by recreation, but rather by archeological digs to uncover building foundations and unearthing artifacts of the 1607 settlement.
As with Edenton, this was the first settlement in Virginia and after the initial fort was built, it became an active seaport, agricultural community (tobacco), and business center. Jamestown was located up the James river as a security measure in case wandering Spanish ships explored or invaded the area. The original fort walls have been erected to help create the feeling of what the early 17th century was like and provide a sense of “Old Towne”. The fort walls are based on finding the actual holes where support posts were buried. I learned this from a member of the APVA (Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities) as he spends time on the site helping visitors understand the archeological efforts. This is
Inside the Fort
Digs unearthed buildings over burial site
his side activity when not involved in a dig or examining artifacts in the lab. More on fort and the findings can be found at the link below.
The only permanent building standing is the 5th church (completed in 1686) after the previous structure was burned during Bacon's Rebellion. Although interesting, the church did not spark our imagination as we spent several hours walking the settlement and reconstructing the early buildings on the unearthed foundations. We relived the trials and tribulations faced by these early settlers as they went about creating a new nation. Visiting the Voorhees Archaearium where many of the artifacts along with simulations and recreations of Old Towne life are available.
The day was cloudy, winding and cool, but the 3 of us pressed on and even took the short trail to Black Rock Point during the island drive. We were in the middle of Colonial American and our spirits were up looking forward to tomorrows adventure.
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