• Structure 17, Glassblowing and Island Drive

    Historic Jamestowne

    Part of Colonial National Historical Park Virginia

Ellen Matthews Bagby

Miss Bagby in 1935 in front of the Jamestown Memorial Church
Miss Bagby (in light-colored hat) celebrates Jamestown Landing Day in 1935 with other notables.
APVA Preservation Virginia
 
Miss Bagby and Grecian royalty at Jamestown

Miss Ellen escorts their Grecian royalties about the grounds in 1956.

APVA Preservation Virginia

In 1896, the teenaged Miss Bagby performed as a “May Pole Dancer” at a fund-raising activity for the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities (APVA). In 1930, this lifelong Richmond resident became the chairman of the Jamestown Committee of the APVA, a position she held until her death in 1960. Whether supervising the day-to-day operation of the site, fundraising, publicizing Jamestown or hobnobbing with royalty, Miss Bagby stepped up to the challenge.

 
Miss Ellen and Elizabeth, the Queen Mother

In 1954, Elizabeth, the Queen Mother, graciously receives gifts for her grandchildren Prince Charles and Princess Anne from Miss Ellen.

APVA Preservation Virginia

A resolution passed by the APVA shortly after her death stated, “The maintenance of the dignity and serenity of the Association’s premiere charge [i.e. Jamestown] was Miss Ellen’s mission in life. She was eminently successful in her aim and … lived to see her achievements widely acclaimed by other organizations interested in the site of the first permanent English settlement in America.”

Did You Know?

Young boy dressing up as Samuel Collier, one of the four boys brought to Jamestown

Of the first 104 English settlers at Jamestown in 1607, four were boys. Several boys were sent to live with the Powhatans so they could learn the language and customs and then return to the English to become interpreters.