Hunt Shrine

The Reverend Robert Hunt (1568-1608) was the first Anglican minister of the colony. The Colonial Dames of America in the State of Virginia erected a shrine in June 1922 to commemorate the earliest celebration of the Holy Communion in the first permanent English settlement in America.

Fellow settlers described Hunt as “an honest, religious and courageous divine, he preferred the service of God in so good a voyage to every thought of ease at home. He endured every privation, yet none ever heard him repine. During his life our factions were oft healed and our greatest extremities so comforted that they seemed easy in comparison with what we endured after his memorable death.”

The shrine was designed by Ralph Adams Cram. It frames a bas-relief depicting the 1607 service with two 16-foot-high brick pillars supporting a sandstone arch. The shrine was first set with its back to the James River, but in 1960 it was rolled to face the river from the northern earthwork of Civil War-era Fort Pocahontas. This position takes advantage of a small amphitheater setting.

The Hunt Shrine is number 14 on the Visit Map.