the bounty of jamestown on display

The search for new details and a richer story about James Fort continues inside the Jamestown Rediscovery Center. Twenty years of digging has unearthed more than two million artifacts that sometimes illustrate the pages of history and sometimes suggest new interpretations of the past. These are the objects that were touched, treasured, traded, used, broken, admired, discarded, and lost by the people who helped lay the foundations of America’s birthplace.

In these pages you can learn about these artifacts—where they were made, how they were used, and what they meant to the people who utilized them. You can discover how the conservators clean and preserve the archaeological finds and how the materials are maintained and interpreted by the curators. Every object on view in the Archaearium has had hours of work devoted to both giving it a voice and preserving it for the future. You can see some of those objects in our Selected Artifacts section of this website. Learn how personal items tell us about the individuals who ventured everything at Jamestown or how the artifacts show a mixing of the English and Virginia Indian cultures. The Research Resources section will point you to the collaborations between scientists, historians, and archaeologists that have enriched the Jamestown story. This artifact collection has only just begun to reveal the stories of America’s birthplace and bring to life the people who once trod these grounds.