Jamestown Rediscovery Foundation

dr. james horn leads new foundation to manage jamestown

Distinguished historian James Horn, D.Phil., has joined the team on Jamestown dedicated to ongoing archaeological fieldwork, collections development, educational programs, and operations on the original site of James Fort.

Dr. James Horn

Dr. James Horn

Dr. Horn, a leading expert on early American history, was formerly Vice President of Research and Historical Interpretation and the O’Neill Director of the John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. In that capacity, he oversaw the management of programs and operations at Historic Jamestowne for five years under an agreement between Preservation Virginia and Colonial Williamsburg. Preservation Virginia’s agreement with Colonial Williamsburg ended on December 31, 2014.

The Jamestown Rediscovery Foundation is a new non-profit organization affiliated with Preservation Virginia, but it has its own board of directors. Its mission will be to raise support for the ongoing success of archaeological projects, collections, and educational programs at Historic Jamestowne.

Horn has a D.Phil. from the University of Sussex, England, and is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He has held fellowships at the Johns Hopkins University, the College of William and Mary, and the Warren Center at Harvard University. Prior to joining the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation in 2002, he taught history at the University of Brighton for 20 years, was visiting editor of publications at the Williamsburg-based Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture, and was the Saunders Director of the Robert H. Smith International Center for Jefferson Studies at The Thomas Jefferson Foundation. He is the author and editor of six books, most recently the best-selling A Land As God Made It: Jamestown and the Birth of America and A Kingdom Strange: The Brief and Tragic History of the Lost Colony of Roanoke. He is currently working on two books: 1619 and the Origins of Modern America and a study of the Indian warrior chief, Opechancanough, brother of Powhatan and the principal leader of resistance to European settlement in Virginia for more than 70 years.

“We’re excited to have such a well-respected historian and scholar as part of our team. Jim’s expertise and knowledge of 17th century history will elevate our programs in anticipation of the anniversaries in 2019.  His knowledge and leadership will play an important role in building upon the significant archaeological research at the site,” said Elizabeth Kostelny, Executive Director of Preservation Virginia. “The creation of this new foundation and the addition of Dr. James Horn positions Historic Jamestowne for a stronger and more vibrant future.”

Dr. Horn said, “Historic Jamestowne is a world-class archaeological site and I am delighted to join Preservation Virginia to lead the remarkable work that is taking place there. I look forward to working with Dr. William “Bill” Kelso, his research team, and the exceptionally talented staff and volunteers to build upon past successes and make our public programs at Historic Jamestowne even better.”

Preservation Virginiaa private non-profit organization and statewide historic preservation leader founded in 1889, is dedicated to perpetuating and revitalizing Virginia’s cultural, architectural and historic heritage thereby ensuring that historic places are integral parts of the lives of present and future generations. In1893, Preservation Virginia acquired 22.5 acres of Jamestown Island, now part of Historic Jamestowne. In 1994, Preservation Virginia began an archaeological project called Jamestown Rediscovery to find the remains of the original James Fort, ca. 1607-1624.