1619: Democracy, Diversity, and Discovery

1619-2019 LogoIn 2019, Virginia and the nation are commemorating the 400th anniversary of the first representative assembly in the western hemisphere and the arrival of the first Africans in mainland English America. Both events are closely connected to Jamestown. The General Assembly was held in Jamestown’s church in the summer of 1619 and of the first two dozen documented Africans forcibly transported to Virginia, several lived and worked in Jamestown, on neighboring plantations, or passed through on their way upriver.

Archaeological excavations, special programs, and new exhibits will highlight the events and people who played a pivotal role in our nation’s history. Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologists are currently excavating around the church where the first Assembly was convened. In spring 2019 the team, in partnership with the National Park Service, will resume digging in New Towne to understand the landscape in which Angela, one of the first documented Africans, lived. Returning in the spring, the “World of 1619” programs will introduce visitors to the historical people who witnessed these world-changing events.

The complete schedule of 2019 events will be posted shortly. The Memorial Church will reopen on April 15, 2019, as part of the debut of new related exhibits there and in the Archaearium. Mark your calendars for the week of July 29 through August 4, 2019, when a series of living history programs, including a reenactment of the first General Assembly; archaeology lectures; special walking tours; and other exciting events will help to highlight the significance of 1619 and its legacies!

upcoming world of 1619 programs

The American Heartbreak 02/27/2019, 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Angela's Story 03/30/2019, 3:15pm - 4:15pm

related excavations