Archaeology Day

Join us on Saturday, October 8, as Historic Jamestowne commemorates Virginia Archaeology Month. This year, the Jamestown Rediscovery team was selected by the Virginia Department of Historic Resources to create this year’s commemorative poster. Find the poster at the DHR website.

Archaeology Day events listed below are included with any Historic Jamestowne admission ticket.

Programs including Archaeology Day are sponsored by The Edward Maria Wingfield Endowment Fund established by The Wingfield Family Society to honor Wingfield as soldier, investor, and Jamestown’s first president.

Archaeology Day Schedule

All Day Events

9:00am–5:00pm: Visit Historic Jamestowne
Experience the work of craftsmen at the Glasshouse, tour the Visitor Center exhibition gallery, visit the archaeological site of the 1607 James Fort and the waysides of New Towne.

9:00am–5:00pm: In the Footsteps of Democracy
Visit the Memorial Church and see the re-interpretation of the site’s original 1617-18 church and its foundations, which was the meeting place for the first representative government in English America. Stand on the exact spot where the first General Assembly was held in 1619 and our nation’s democracy began. At the Memorial Church.

9:30am–5:30pm: From Fort to Port – Legacies of 1619
Explore the tobacco boom in Virginia, Jamestown’s development from a fort to a port, as well as the exploitation of Africans, Virginia Indians, and indentured servants in exhibits at the Natalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium Museum.

9:00am–4:00pm: The Buried Truth – Archaeology in Action (weather permitting)
Share in the moment of discovery at the original 1607 James Fort. Meet the Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologists and learn about ongoing excavations as well as this season’s latest discoveries.


Ed Shed: Family-Oriented Archaeology
The Ed Shed is an educational space for children and adults alike. Come join the archaeology team and  experience the moment of discovery as you help sort through artifacts from a 1630-1650s trash pit. The Ed Shed is located outside the west wall of the 1607 Fort.

Native Lifeways of the Chesapeake
Join Daniel Firehawk Abbott of the Nanticoke people of Maryland’s Eastern Shore to learn about the material culture and lifeways of the Tidewater Algonquians as well as their interactions with the settlers of Jamestown. In James Fort.

Forged in History
Blacksmithing was one of the earliest trades to be practiced at Jamestown. Join blacksmiths Shel Browder and Steve Mankowski for demonstrations and a discussion of the types of work that happened at the site of the original James Fort forge. In James Fort.

“Pales, posts, and railes …”
Building a fort proved a necessity for the colonists within a month of their 1607 arrival. Carpenter Danny Whitten will demonstrate the tools and methods used by the first colonists to build everything from the fort walls to the buildings. In James Fort.

Hoops & Staves
Join cooper Marshall Scheetz as he demonstrates traditional methods for creating buckets, barrels and casks. Coopering—the making of wooden storage containers—has existed for over 3,000 years. At Jamestown, these wooden vessels were used not only for household activities but also for the transportation of precious cargo, such as wine, beer, tobacco, sugar, and salt. In James Fort.

A New Life in a New World: Meet Anas Todkill
Learn firsthand about the trials of the first English settlers and their experiences exploring the Chesapeake from Anas Todkill, one of the settlers who explored the bay with Captain John Smith. In James Fort.

Timed Events

11:00am and 1:00pm: Archaeology of James Fort Walking Tour
Join a Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologist for an in-depth tour of the 1607 fort site, the ongoing excavations, and some of this season’s most significant findings. Tour begins at the Tercentennial Monument.

2:00pm: First Africans Walking Tour
Join Mark Summers, Public Historian, for a walking tour of “New Town” that focuses on the arrival of the first Africans in Virginia in 1619. But the story of African Americans at Jamestown goes beyond 1619 … Explore their impact on our history on this engaging walking tour that aims to trace the life of Angela, one of the Africans forcibly brought to Jamestown in that fateful year. Tour begins at the Tercentennial Monument.

Programs including Archaeology Day are sponsored by The Edward Maria Wingfield Endowment Fund established by The Wingfield Family Society to honor Wingfield as soldier, investor, and Jamestown’s first president.