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Jamestown Settlement Ship Godspeed Coming to Alexandria Waterfront

WILLIAMSBURG, Va., September 13, 2011 – The Godspeed, a re-creation of one of the three ships that brought America’s first permanent English colonists to Virginia in 1607, will host public tours and school field trips in Alexandria October 4-9.  The ship, from Jamestown Settlement living-history museum in Virginia’s Jamestown-Williamsburg-Yorktown “Historic Triangle,” last visited the city in 2008.

The Godspeed will be docked at the north end of the Alexandria City Marina, adjacent to Founders Park near the intersection of North Union and Queen streets, and will be open for free tours from 3 to 6 p.m. October 4-7, from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. October 8, and from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. October 9.  Visitors will be able to explore the ship and talk with historical interpreters about the 1607 voyage and 17th-century sailing, navigation and shipboard life.

Prescheduled educational programs for fourth-grade students from Alexandria City Public Schools are planned for October 4-7.

The Godspeed will depart from Jamestown Settlement, a state-operated museum that tells the story of 17th-century Virginia through gallery exhibits and living history, on September 28.  From Alexandria, the ship will sail to Yorktown, where it will be docked October 14-19 in conjunction with events celebrating the 230th anniversary of the decisive victory of the American Revolution.

During the Godspeed’s absence from Jamestown Settlement, visitors will have the opportunity to board the Susan Constant and Discovery, re-creations of the other two 1607 ships, and the Elizabeth, representing a vessel that made several voyages to Virginia between 1613 and 1625.

The Susan Constant, Godspeed and Discovery have been designated by the Virginia General Assembly as “the official fleet of the Commonwealth.”  The original Godspeed carried a total of 52 people, including crew, on the 1607 voyage and was captained by Bartholomew Gosnold, a principal organizer of the Virginia Company of London that sponsored the Jamestown colony.

The Godspeed is sailed by a crew of Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation staff and volunteers, and its voyages are supported with private donations.

For more information about Jamestown Settlement and the ships, call (888) 593-4682 toll-free or (757) 253-4838 or visit hif.ciniva.net.  To plan a visit to historic Alexandria, Virginia, go towww.VisitAlexandriaVA.com.