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American History at its Best: Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown. Studying history may not seem like a huge priority, but the more we learn about the past, the better we understand the present, and the easier it is to create better paths to the future. The truth is, history is closer than you think—the life you are living right now is a direct effect of countless elements and events that made it so. How fascinating is that?
If this piques your interest and you want to learn more, the Historic Triangle is the birthplace of American history, and there is much to learn. A visit to Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown is as close as any of us can get to traveling back in time. Here you can explore America’s beginnings with 180-degree theaters, life-size re-creations, outdoor experiences and more.
At Jamestown Settlement, dive into the cultures of the Powhatan native people, English colonists and West Central Africans who assembled in 17th-century Virginia—seemingly a long time ago, but significant to our lives today! One of the museum’s most loved attractions is its outdoor recreation of one of the three ships that sailed from England to Virginia in 1607, which guests can climb aboard and explore. You can also see life-size recreations of an English fort and the world of the Powhatan Indians in a Paspahegh town.
Next door, the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown tells the following chapter of the story—the story of our nation’s founding. Start at the beginning of the colonial period and make your way to the creation of our Constitution and beyond. Outdoor living-history areas let you see what the life of a Revolutionary War soldier was like at a recreated Continental Army encampment, and a Revolution-era farm lets you witness a day in the life of a real 18th-century family.
Luckily, you don’t need to wait until spring to plan your visit—Jamestown Settlement and the American Revolution Museum at Yorktown are open and accessible year-round. There are special events and seasonal programs during the winter months, like After Angelo, an upcoming exhibit that starts in February 2023 and honors the legacy of one of the first African women mentioned by name in the historical record at Jamestown.
You can also see a special exhibit going on right now about the creation and evolution of Virginia’s identity as an American state. Reign & Rebellion is a twofold exhibition at both museums that will continue through September 23 of this year. Discover the origins of the rebellious and determined American spirit, which was shaped by the Stuart monarchy’s royal foothold in Virginia in the 17th and 18th centuries.
See? History is fun!