• Structure 17, Glassblowing and Island Drive

    Historic Jamestowne

    Part of Colonial National Historical Park Virginia

A Defensible Site

This detail of Captain John Smith's map of Virginia, published in 1624, shows that Jamestown is an admirably defensible site. (Note that north is to the right on this map.)

The narrow isthmus connecting Jamestown with the mainland was under water during high tide; the peninsula itself jutted into the James, affording the settlers a view several miles up and down the river from where they built their fort. Two and a half centuries later, Confederate earthworks would be constructed on the 1607 fort site.


Did You Know?

Front and back image of the Virginia Company Seal

In 1606, an English joint stock company was formed to establish settlements on the east coast of North America. This company included The Virginia Company of London (which founded Jamestown) and The Virginia Company of Plymouth (which established Popham, a short-lived settlement in Maine).