Thursday, July 4, 2013

Historic Jamestowne, Jamestown, Virginia

We really enjoyed Jamestowne (yes, it’s spelled correctly), especially after finding our visit to Colonial Williamsburg just so-so. 

Jamestowne was the first English settlement in North America, in 1607. What? You thought it was the Pilgrims and Mayflower? Nope – they arrived in 1620. Jamestowne was establish when 104 men & boys were sent by the Virginia Company of London by King James I to establish a colony in North America. It was a tough beginning - a “starving time” where most people died, lack of women, and conflicts with the Native Americans. But eventually the town flourished, was the capitol at one point (later moved to Williamsburg, then even later, Richmond), and finally, as we know, fell. 

What is really cool about Jamestowne today, is that they always knew where the “New Towne) was (basically, what we call suburbs), but the originally fort was never found. That is, until 1994 (yes, 1994, that is not a typo)….. archeologists discovered the original fort and began excavating. They have found a plethora of objects from the early 1600’s – how cool is that! Here are a few – scissors, vases, rings. 
 
Also at the site is the largest, still standing building from the 1600’s – the bell tower of the first church. Cool! This is why we more enjoyed Jamestowne to Williamsburg – there weren’t reconstructions – these are originally remains and artifacts from 400 years ago. 

The cost to visit Historic Jamestowne is $14 per person for a 7-day visit, which includes admission to Yorktown. Along with the fort and archeological digs, there are two museums, a café (with surprisingly good food), the NPS Visitor Center (good movie for an overview), Ranger talks, a five mile hike/bike/drive (we saw a deer and Bald Eagle) and a visit to the Glasshouse where they blow glass using the same “recipe” as they did 400 years ago.


This was definitely a cool place to visit and one we recommend.

 


Easy and affordable - no matter where you are! 

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