So, here I am in Virginia, reveling in the humidity which is so nice for my skin and hair, immersing myself in a place that has over four hundred years of American history. Having Native American heritage myself, I was glad to read the accounts of the Jamestown settlement and I love the description the Museum uses: America’s beginning is a fabric woven from three threads. First here were the native Powhatan Indians, and then second the English settlers who arrived in 1607, and finally the Africans brought here as indentured servants beginning in 1619. It was seventy years after the original settlers arrived before greed took over and slavery took a hold, which is why there were some free black men before emancipation.
I wondered why Jamestown, why here, why not a little further one way or the other on this big river? A Park Ranger said because their Charter (instructions) said to go 100 miles up the big river and build a colony. Well, I have no idea if Jamestown is exactly one hundred miles or not. I guess it could depend on where you began measuring. I tend to think that it looked like a promising place with a decent spot to land the boats and so they pulled over and unloaded. I could be wrong. It is exciting to know that archeologists are still digging the original settlement, still learning and making adjustments to the mock site as they uncover more writings and more artifacts.
One thing that amuses me as we drive along in Virginia is the unique names of roads and little villages. They have so much character in comparison to where I come from. Perhaps it is because we in Colorado have such a young history or perhaps because our settlers came from America rather than England and Africa. I suppose it could even stem from the fact that I am used to the names of things out west. I don’t know the answer for sure but Norge and Croaker sound quaint and make me want to turn down their lanes and go exploring. I head home soon and I take with me an intense desire to return here and learn more and that’s always a good thing.