No announcement yet.

VA Indian village makes history

  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • VA Indian village makes history

    Indian village makes history
    National Park Service puts Werowocomoco on national register
    Tuesday, March 28, 2006

    The 17th-century Indian village of Werowocomoco has moved from legend to the National Register of Historic Places.

    State officials announced yesterday that the National Park Service has granted national-register approval to the archaeological site believed to be the village where the Indian princess Pocahontas famously saved Captain John Smith from execution by her father, Chief Powhatan.

    The site is on the shore of York River's Purtan Bay in Gloucester County on privately owned land that has been studied intensely by archaeologists each summer since 2003.

    Randolph Turner, director of the Virginia Department of Historic Resources' Tidewater Regional Preservation Office, said Werowocomoco was placed in December on the Virginia Landmarks Register and at the same time nominated for inclusion in the national register.

    Turner said both designations are honorifics and place no restrictions on the use of the land.

    Although scholars have for decades believed the village was on Purtan Bay, another site in Gloucester farther toward the mouth of the York River was considered for many years to be the site of Werowocomoco.

    But in 2003, a group of archaeologists working with property owners Bob and Lynn Ripley announced that historic research and archaeology had established that the village was on the Ripleys' land.

    The Werowocomoco Research Group, with headquarters at the College of William and Mary, was formed to study the site and has been holding archaeological field schools there since then. The group's members include archaeologists, the Ripleys, state officials and Virginia Indian representatives.

    Smith, a leader of the settlers who in 1607 established Jamestown as the first permanent English settlement in America, included the story of being saved by Pocahontas in 1607 at Werowocomoco in an account he wrote much later.

    Even if the story is not true, or if it's Smith's misinterpretation of a ceremony he did not understand, Werowocomoco has an important place in Virginia's earliest history. It was the main village of Powhatan, who was the paramount leader of many tribes in the area.

    Archaeologists say their study of the village is revealing much about Indian life and providing clues to the extent of trade and interaction between the settlers and the Indians.

    Turner said yesterday that archaeologists working at the village site have recovered more than 20 pieces of copper that were made in Europe and used by the English settlers as a sort of currency in trading with the Indians.

    Contact staff writer Andrew Petkofsky at [email protected] or (757) 229-1512.
    This story can be found at:

    Go Back
    Everything is gonna be alright!

    Be blessed - got love???

    This b me.....

Join the online community forum celebrating Native American Culture, Pow Wows, tribes, music, art, and history.

Related Topics




There are no results that meet this criteria.

Sidebar Ad