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‘Jamestown Day’ Marks 409th Anniversary of America’s First Permanent English Colony

WILLIAMSBURG, Va., April 26, 2016 — On Saturday, May 14, Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement collaborate to offer a range of programs marking the 409th anniversary of the 1607 founding in Virginia of America’s first permanent English settlement.

Jamestown Day” features Historic Jamestowne’s ongoing archaeological discoveries of the 1607 fort and one of Jamestown Settlement’s ships sailing in the James River. A variety of family-friendly tours and interpretive programs on Powhatan and English trade and weaponry, and military and maritime demonstrations will take place at both sites.

Jamestown Day-Jamestown Settlement Discovery sails in James River

Jamestown Settlement’s Discovery will sail in the James River on May 14 as part of Jamestown Day. Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation photo.

“Jamestown Day” is sponsored by Historic Jamestowne, site of the original 1607 settlement jointly administered by the National Park Service and Jamestown Rediscovery on behalf of Preservation Virginia, in partnership with Jamestown Settlement, a living-history museum of 17th-century Virginia administered by the Commonwealth of Virginia’s Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation.

While there is separate admission to Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement, a four-site value ticket to Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement, as well as Yorktown Battlefield and the Yorktown Victory Center, is available on “Jamestown Day” and throughout the year.

Jamestown Settlement
An artillery salute will mark the mid-morning departure of the Discovery, a re-creation of one of the three ships that brought colonists to Virginia in 1607, to set sail in the James River. Programs also highlight the 25th anniversary of the Susan Constant, commissioned in 1991, and the 10th anniversary of the Godspeed, commissioned in 2006, including a photography exhibit, films and an artillery salute.

The day’s events feature military drills and interpretive demonstrations on Powhatan Indian and English trade and weaponry, and a program on the beginnings of representative government in America. Visitors also can engage in a variety of diversions, such as bowling, hoop rolling and quoits.

Jamestown Day-Historic Jamestowne

Historic Jamestowne will offer tours and ongoing archaeological excavations of the 1607 James Fort, allowing guests to share in the moment of discovery while interacting with archaeologists on site. Preservation Virginia photo.

Historic Jamestowne
As part of the National Park Service’s Centennial, “Jamestown Day” at Historic Jamestowne 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 Anas Todkill and interact with an American Indian interpreter.

A variety of ranger tours and programs highlighting the history of first settlement will be available throughout the day, including costumed glassblowers at the Glasshouse showing one of America’s first industries.

Separate Admission to Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement
There is separate admission 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. 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 Yorktown Victory Center, is $35.25 for adults, $23.25 for ages 13-15 and $12.75 for ages 6-12 and offers seven consecutive days of admission to all four sites.

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 hif.ciniva.net.



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, and the waysides of New Towne.

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 and blacksmithing as practiced during Jamestown’s early years.

9:30 a.m. and 12 & 2 p.m.: Ranger Walking Tour. Take a guided Park Ranger tour to gain unique perspectives on the history of Jamestown.

10 a.m. – 12 noon: 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. – 4 p.m.: “The Buried Truth.” Share in the moment of discovery at the original 1607 James Fort. Meet the Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologists and learn about ongoing excavations and the latest discoveries.

10 a.m. – 4 p.m.: Native Lifeways of the Chesapeake. Meet Dan Firehawk Abbott of the Nanticoke people of Maryland’s Eastern Shore and learn about the material culture and lifeways of Tidewater Algonquians and their interactions with the settlers of Jamestown.

10 a.m. – 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. – 4 p.m.: New Happenings at the Archaearium. Join the curatorial staff and view artifacts from the archaeological collection and learn the stories of their discovery.

10:30 a.m. and 1:30 & 3 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. Tours continue on Sunday, May 15, at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m.



All Day: Explore Museum Galleries. An introductory film and expansive gallery exhibits, featuring more than 500 artifacts, tell the Jamestown story in the context of the Powhatan Indian, English and African cultures that converged in the 1600s.

All Day: Celebrating Our Ships. Building a 17th-century ship is an amazing feat of skill. Enjoy an exhibit highlighting the construction, launch and sailing adventures of Jamestown Settlement’s Susan Constant and Godspeed, marking 25- and 10-year anniversaries.

All Day: 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.

10:30 a.m. & 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 & 3:30 p.m.: “Godspeed to Jamestown.” A documentary from A&E Television Networks’ History® chronicles the 2004-2006 construction of Jamestown Settlement’s replica Godspeed.

10:30 a.m.-12 noon and 1 p.m.-2:30 p.m.: Period Games. Join in fun and games of the 17th century, including hoop rolling, bowling and quoits.

10 a.m.: Discovery Sets Sail. An artillery salute signals the departure of Discovery, one of Jamestown Settlement’s replica ships, from the ships’ pier to demonstrate sailing maneuvers in the James River through mid-afternoon. (Weather permitting.)

11 a.m.: Comparative Fire Starting. Could you start a fire with friction or flint? Learn how Powhatan Indians and English settlers started fires more than 400 years ago.

12 noon: The Rule of Law. Discover the beginnings of representative government, from the earliest days at Jamestown to the establishment of the first General Assembly in 1619.

1 p.m.: Celestial Navigation. Take a noon sighting to learn how English sailors navigated across the ocean in the 17th century.

2 p.m.: Artillery. An artillery firing celebrates the Susan Constant’s 25th birthday and the Godspeed’s 10th birthday. (Weather dependent)

3 p.m.: Comparative Weapons. Discover the advantages and disadvantages of period weapons used by the Powhatan Indians and English colonists.

4 p.m.: Trade Between Cultures. Learn how Powhatan Indians and the English settlers overcame language barriers to trade goods in the 17th century.