May 20, 2015

On the River, Episode 3: Jamestown -- Birthplace of Modern America

Since the rediscovery of Jamestown 21 years ago, archeologist have found 2 million artifacts from excavation sites.

Of all the historic and environmentally significant sites along the James River, Jamestown is the true centerpiece.

It’s where Captain John Smith and his crew of roughly 100 men and boys landed in 1607 and established the first permanent English colony on American soil. It’s also where the first democratic form of government in the Americas was founded, and where Native Americans, Africans, and Europeans first interacted with one another for an extended period.

Twenty-one years ago, archaeologists rediscovered the James Fort at Jamestown. Since then, they’ve uncovered more than 2 million artifacts that have taught us about the lives of our ancestors. Today, Jamestown attracts 250,000 visitors per year who come to see the birthplace of modern America.

But Dominion Virginia Power’s proposed transmission lines could ruin all of that. Their construction would destroy the historic context of Jamestown, and mar the beautiful view from Jamestown Island that has gone relatively unchanged for thousands of years.

Watch the video to learn more about this iconic place and the threat that the proposed transmission lines pose.

David Weible was the content specialist at the National Trust, previously with Preservation and Outside magazines. His interest in historic preservation was inspired by the ‘20s-era architecture, streetcar neighborhoods, and bars of his hometown of Cleveland.

Applications for the Telling the Full History Preservation Fund grant program are due December 15, 2021.

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