“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Williamsburg in James City County, Virginia — The American South (Mid-Atlantic)


Paspahegh Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, November 25, 2015
1. Paspahegh Marker
Inscription. When the English colonists arrived in 1607, they landed in Paspahegh Country, which extended westward along the shore of the James River to the Chickahominy River and beyond. The Native Americans who lived here were Algonquin speakers that fished, foraged, farmed, and hunted for a living, Archaeological excavations at the Paspahegh Settlement Site indicate that the English encountered a well-established town, consisting of residences, warehouses, and temples scattered loosely across the landscape, that may have been home to as many as 620 people.

Thousands of artifacts, including pottery, projectile points, and copper ornaments, document Paspahegh life during the Late Woodland period (AD 1000 to 1600), and offer insight into the social, economic, and political worlds in which they lived. Faunal and skeletal remains show that the Paspahegh were relatively healthy, and that their diet consisted largely of corn, although they ate a variety of wild foods, including nuts, small grains, fruits, deer, small mammals, reptiles, and fish.

Given their proximity to Jamestown, the Paspahegh were early and convenient trading partners for the English, but in 1610, the colonists raided the Paspehegh town killing nearly all of its residents, burning their residences, and destroying their crops. The Paspahegh who survived were forced
Paspahegh Marker image. Click for full size.
By Bernard Fisher, November 25, 2015
2. Paspahegh Marker
to abandon their territory and seek refuge in other Indian nations.

Captain John Smithís map of Jamestown Island and its environs in 1606 showing Paspahegh country on either side of the Chickahominy River.

This Paspahegh town is re-created in part at the Jamestown Settlement history museum, and is based upon the archaeological investigations conducted at the Paspahegh Settlement Site (44JC308) in the 1990s.
Erected by Virginia Capital Trail Foundation, Commonwealth of Virginia.
Location. 37° 15.917′ N, 76° 52.35′ W. Marker is near Williamsburg, Virginia, in James City County. Marker can be reached from John Tyler Memorial Highway (Virginia Route 5) 0.4 miles west of Barretts Ferry Drive, on the right when traveling west. Click for map. Located in Chickahominy Riverfront Park. Marker is at or near this postal address: 1350 John Tyler Memorial Hwy, Williamsburg VA 23185, United States of America.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within 6 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. Wowinchapuncke (within shouting distance of this marker); Piney Grove and E. A. Saunders (approx. 3.8 miles away); Paspahegh Indians (approx. 3.8 miles away); Sir William Berkeley (approx. 4.1 miles away); Governorís Land (approx. 5.2 miles away); Battle Of Green Spring (approx. 5.2 miles away); Green Spring Road (approx. 5.2 miles away); Church on the Main (approx. 5.2 miles away). Click for a list of all markers in Williamsburg.
Categories. Colonial EraNative AmericansSettlements & Settlers
Credits. This page originally submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page has been viewed 104 times since then and 45 times this year. Photos:   1, 2. submitted on , by Bernard Fisher of Mechanicsville, Virginia. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016.
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