The Pocahontas statue is one of the most famous images of Jamestown Island. Her hands are worn a bright copper color because so many visitors have held them while posing for photos. The statue has appeared on postcards for generations, though it features historical inaccuracies such as clothing more fitting for a Plains Indian woman.
Sculptor William Ordway Partridge worked on a statue of the famous Indian woman for the 300th anniversary events in 1907, but funding was short. It wasn’t until the federal government donated $5,000 in 1913 that the bronze statue was finished. The dedication ceremony was June 1922 and included about 500 visitors. Among them were a member of the Rappahannock tribe; Dr. J.A.C. Chandler, president of the College of William and Mary; and Dr. Lyon G. Tyler, former president of the college.
The statue and its pedestal originally stood almost 18 feet tall and were located south of the 1907 Memorial Church, where Pocahontas could welcome visitors coming from off the ferry. In 1957, the statue was moved to the low rock base near the APVA entrance gate for Jamestown’s 350th anniversary celebration. In 2014, she was moved yet again, this time only a few feet to the west to make way for more archaeological work. A reproduction of the statue was given to the British people by the governor of Virginia to adorn Pocahontas’ burial ground at St. George’s Church in Gravesend, England.