It is funny how living in the DC area can “desensitize” you to historical landmarks and events. I pass over historical sites every day (then again, we all do…) and while I realize what they are, I don’t really think of their importance. History was (one of) my favorite subjects in school [and no, not just because I met Kris in grade 11 history class...] and has continued to play a large role in my life. While working on my MLS in graduate school, I was also working on an MA in History – but I stopped my coursework to work full-time and to gain more experience in the field. I am happy with my decision for many reasons – mainly because it gives me some free time to pursue my other passions. The historical lens is still on – and before I do anything, I research it. At length. Read up on the history. Knitting history. Textiles history. Photography history. Travel history. Natural history.
Once I found out that my regional archives conference was in Williamsburg, Virginia – “where history lives” – I did my research. I have lived in the DC area for 10 years, and I had not yet been to this close by (about 3 hours to the south) site. What intrigued me even more than Williamsburg was the settlement at Jamestown, celebrating its 400 year anniversary (you may recall the Queen’s visit).
The drive to Jamestown Island was picture perfect. The James River is a deep estuary of the Chesapeake Bay, and was a real attraction to the colonists who settled in the area in the seventeenth century. Of course, it was also the home of the Powhatan tribe; their most famous member being “Pocahontas”. Within the last ten years, archaeologists have uncovered the original settlement of Jamestown, where the English colonists landed in 1607. For years, the historians and archaeologists believed that the original settlement had eroded into the James River.
Interesting sidebar: the English settlers actually considered a site to the east of the island for the first settlement. That site is now the largest vineyard and winery in the state of Virginia, Williamsburg Winery. …and where there is wine, there is Lolly (and Kris).
We came home with some liquid souvenirs.
The town of Williamsburg was very nice too. We did a fun little ghost tour of Williamsburg on Halloween night. Evidently this is the most “haunted” of the houses in Williamsburg – more ghost sightings than any other house in town!
Does it seem creepy to you?
The excursion came at a wonderful time – the leaves were just beginning their color change in Virginia. There was a nice chill in the air (perfect for a Verona Shawl photography shoot) and the promise of beautiful sights at every turn.