Jamestown, the Virginia Colony

May 14,1607


-Jamestown is located in the state of Virginia.

-It is located 50 miles off of the Chesapeake bay.

-It is located north of the Spanish base at St. Augustine and was set up inland because the threats being made.

-International Rivalries with Spain and France shaped the location of Jamestown and the settlement of Virginia.

-The shape of the channel in the James River was another factor.

Is This a Good Place to Settle?

-Jamestown had its ups and downs and had many advantages working towards it.

-The English were expected to make a huge profit off of gold, iron, and timber.

-They had many natural resources around them that could be used for housing and they had a good food supply.

-Since they lived on a river, they had good transportation especially since they were trying to find a route to Asia for trade.

History of Jamestown

-The founding of Jamestown, America's first permanent English colony was in Virginia in 1607.

-It sparked a series of cultural encounters that helped shape the nation and the world.

-The language, customs, beliefs, government, and aspirations of these early Virginians are still part of the United States' heritage today.

-The colony was sponsored by the Virginia company of London; which was a group of investors who were hoping to profit from this.

-The English men had settled right in the middle of nearly 14,000 Native Americans who were ruled by the powerful leader of Powhatan.

- One the English and the natives became better friends, the two began to trade and both highly benefitted from this.

-Unfamiliar climate, brackish water, and a lack of food supply were just some of the conditions that led to disease and death.

-The colony lacked skilled farmers and sufficient laborers.

-The first two English women arrived at the colony in the year of 1608.

-Captain John Smith became the colony's leader in September of 1608.

-However in the year of 1609, Smith became injured and had to return home back to England.

-In order to make a profit, the settlers tried a number of small industries which included glass making, wood production, and pitch a tar and potash manufacture.

-Tobacco became a major cash crop in this colony.

-Jamestown being the capital of Virginia until 1699 when the seat of government moved to Williamsburg and that became the new capital of Virginia.

Competiton for America

-The English had rivalries with France and Spain which was a factor that helped shape the location of Jamestown.

-English men were not the first to arrive in Virginia. The first people there were Asian hunter-gatherers; they arrived approximately 15,000 years beforehand.

-Also the Spanish explored the Chesapeake bay before the English. Catholic missionaries were sent by the Spanish to go and convert the native so that the power of Spain would be spread north from Cuba.



-The settlers at Jamestown were members of the Anglican faith, the official Church of England. The pilgrims were dissenters from the Church of England and established the Puritan or Congregational Church.


-The first representative government in British America began in Jamestown in 1619 with the convening of the general assembly.

-The first representative assembly in English America met on July 30, 1619 in the church of Jamestown.