Jamestown Day

The 17th-century brick church tower is viewed through the pathway of the wooden palisade on a sunny day
9:00am - 5:00pm

The 17th-century brick church tower is viewed through the pathway of the wooden palisade on a sunny day

Explore America’s Birthplace and discover the stories of Jamestown!

Join us to mark the 417th anniversary of the arrival of 104 men and boys at Jamestown. On May 14th, 1607, three ships anchored in the deep waters of the James River, their passengers disembarked, and they decided to establish their settlement on a swampy, unoccupied peninsula “in Paspiha’s [Paspehegh] country” (George Percy). Their task was to find gold and a water route to the Pacific Ocean. They were not successful at this, but they set in motion the events that would help build the foundation of America.

More tours and programs coming soon! Jamestown Day events are included with admission to the Preservation Virginia portion of Historic Jamestowne. In the event of bad weather, programs will be moved indoors to the Archaearium or Memorial Church.



All Day Events

James Fort: the Birthplace of America – Visit the archaeological site of the 1607 James Fort

In the Footsteps of DemocracyVisit 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 where our nation’s democracy began. At the Memorial Church

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 this new gallery exhibit at the Natalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium Museum.


Activities & Living History

Native Lifeways of the Chesapeake (10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.)Meet Dan Firehawk Abbott of the Nanticoke people of Maryland’s Eastern Shore and learn about the material culture and life ways of the Tidewater Algonquians and their interactions with the settlers of Jamestown. At James Fort

Forged in History (10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.)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 went on at the site of the original James Fort Forge. At James Fort

“pales, posts, and railes…” (10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.) Building a fort proved a necessity for the colonists within a month of their 1607 arrival. Carpenters Danny Whitten and Jesse Robertson will demonstrate the tools and methods used by the first colonists to build everything from the fort walls to buildings. Stop by to learn more about this important trade! At James Fort

Meet Anas Todkill: “A Tractable Trade” (11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.) – 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. At James Fort



Archaeology Tours (11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m.) – Join a Jamestown Rediscovery archaeologist for a tour of the ongoing excavations and some of the most significant findings. Program begins at the Pocahontas Statue

Powhatan: 1622 Walking Tour (3:00 p.m.) – Join Public historian Mark Summers for a brand new tour of James Fort. Learn about the Powhatan resistance to the English colony from 1607 to the events of March 22, 1622. Program begins at the Pocahontas Statue

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