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Tools and Technology Focus of August Theme at Jamestown Settlement & Yorktown Victory Center

WILLIAMSBURG, Va., July 21, 2015 – Tools and technology of the 17th and 18th centuries will be explored in August at Jamestown Settlement and the Yorktown Victory Center living-history museums during a “Tools of the Trade” theme month.

‘On the Riverfront’ at Jamestown Settlement August 1 & 2
Jamestown Settlement Powhatan village canoe burning

“On the Riverfront,” August 1-2, allows visitors to learn about the dugout canoe construction in  Jamestown Settlement’s Powhatan Indian village and tour the ongoing special exhibition “Working and Racing on the Bay: The Chesapeake Log Canoe.”

The month-long theme kicks off with a Jamestown Settlement special event, “On the Riverfront,” August 1-2, with opportunities to scrape out a Powhatan-style canoe, hear sea chanteys and discover life along the Chesapeake Bay through interpretive demonstrations, children’s crafts and period games. Visitors also can explore the “Working and Racing on the Bay: The Chesapeake Log Canoe” special exhibition, on display through September 8, to learn about the vessel’s construction and evolution. Curator tours of the exhibition will be held at 11:30 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. each day.

Among the weekend highlights, visitors can enjoy performances at 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. by ShantyGrass, which celebrates the traditions of Chesapeake Bay watermen with a unique blend of maritime-bluegrass Americana. Outdoors in the museum’s riverfront discovery area, visitors learn about life of a modern waterman from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Jeff Hogge, whose family has worked the waters of the Chesapeake Bay since the 17th century, will demonstrate techniques of modern net-making, crab-potting and oyster-tonging.

“Tools of the Trade” Interpretive Programs August 1-31

At Jamestown Settlement, visitors can compare and contrast 1600s technology of the Powhatan Indian, English and African cultures through period artifacts in indoor gallery exhibits and hands-on activities in the outdoor living-history areas. Daily demonstrations in the re-created Powhatan Indian village will feature dugout canoe construction at 10 a.m. and stone and bone tools at 2:30 p.m. At the ships’ pier, visitors can take part in an 11 a.m. swivel-gun firing and learn about knots and navigation tools at 1 p.m. In the re-created colonial fort, woodworking demonstrations will be held at 12 noon, followed by a military drill at 4 p.m.

At the Yorktown Victory Center, visitors can learn about tools used by Continental Army soldiers and 18th-century farmers, and try using many of the reproduction tools and implements. Daily programs at 10 a.m. will explore tools used by a typical farming family during the Revolution to plant and tend gardens, process flax into cloth, harvest tobacco and cook over an open hearth. At the Continental Army encampment, visitors can explore the workings of flintlock muskets and various types of artillery, including daily firing demonstrations at 11 a.m. of artillery, examine implements used by physicians and surgeons to care for sick and wounded soldiers and, at 1 p.m., learn methods of constructing earthworks during the Siege of Yorktown.

In addition, the Yorktown Victory Center will offer a “Tools of the American Revolution Seminar” on Saturday, August 15, exploring topics from cloth production to building construction. Registration and admission for the seminar is separate from general admission.


“Tools of the Trade” programs, including “On the Riverfront” on August 1-2, are included with admission to Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center. A combination ticket to both museums is $21.00 for adults and $10.50 for ages 6 to 12. Admission to Jamestown Settlement is $16.75 for adults and $7.75 for ages 6 to 12; Yorktown Victory Center is $9.75 for adults and $5.50 for ages 6 to 12. Children under 6 receive complimentary admission.

Residents of James City County, York County and the City of Williamsburg, including College of William and Mary students, receive complimentary admission with proof of residency.

Hours & Location

Jamestown Settlement and Yorktown Victory Center are open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. (and until 6 p.m. June 15 through August 15). Jamestown Settlement is located on State Route 31 just southwest of Williamsburg. The Yorktown Victory Center is located on Route 1020 in Yorktown. The museums are a 25-minute drive from each other along the Colonial Parkway. For more information, call (888) 593-4682 toll-free or (757) 253-4838, or visit hif.ciniva.net.