Jamestown, Virginia

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For basic information about Jamestown, Virginia consult the guide for Genealogy Resources at Swem, which includes a section on early settlers at Jamestown.

Land patents and grants from the Library of Virginia are available at http://www.lva.virginia.gov/public/guides/Research_Notes_20.pdf and http://lva1.hosted.exlibrisgroup.com/F/?func=file&file_name=find-b-clas30&local_base=CLAS30.

Swem Library Exhibit

The exhibit ”Carry Me Back to Old Virginny: Jamestown Revisited” was open in Swem Library’s Special Collections Research Center and the adjoining Nancy H. Marshall Gallery from March-August 2007. In honor of the 400th anniversary of the settlement of Jamestown, Swem Library developed this three-part exhibit on Jamestown.[1]

The first section was a brief discussion of the background to the establishment of Virginia, particularly the transformation of medieval Europe and the early European exploration and colonization of the Americas. Some of Swem’s most precious rare books, including five dating from before 1600, helped illustrate this background. Another section examined the vastly different ways in which scholars have interpreted the early years of Jamestown, frequently using the same sources. Many of these scholars have been affiliated at one time or another with the College of William and Mary, whether as students, faculty, or fellows.

The final and largest part of the exhibit, in the Nancy H. Marshall Gallery, examined past Jamestown anniversary commemorations from 1807 to 1957. The focus was two-fold: placing the anniversaries in Jamestown Exposition postcard their appropriate historical contexts and depicting William and Mary’s participation in the events. On display were invitations, letters, programs, photographs, and other memorabilia. Items of special interest included a letter from a woman weary of the 1807 jubilee; an 1857 article in Harper’s Weekly featuring that year’s commemoration, complete with graphics; some of the earliest photographs of archaeology at Jamestown; a stunning enlargement of an original postcard in Swem’s collection of the “Great White Fleet” that sailed from the 1907 Jamestown Exposition; racist postcards from the 1907 Exposition; and assorted material relating to Queen Elizabeth’s visit in 1957.


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Questions? Contact the Special Collections Research Center at spcoll@wm.edu or 757-221-3090, or visit the Special Collections Research Center in the Earl Gregg Swem Library at William & Mary.

A Note About The Contents Of This Wiki
The information available in this wiki is the best available from known documents and sources at the time it was written. Unfortunately, many of the early original records of William & Mary were destroyed by fires, military occupation, and the normal effects of time. Information in this wiki is not complete as new information continues to be uncovered in Swem Library's Special Collections Research Center and elsewhere. Researchers are strongly encouraged to use the Special Collections search tools for their research as the information contained in this wiki is by no means comprehensive.