Virginia Lee Hutcheson Davis has recently published a new book with the full title of Jamestowne Ancestors 1607-1699 - Commemoration of the 400th Anniversary of the Landing at James Towne 1607-2007. This week I had a chance to examine the new book and found it to be an excellent genealogical reference work.
Jamestown was the first permanent English colony in America. About 150 individuals built a small fort on an island in the James River that eventually grew into a much larger settlement. New immigrants arrived in later ships and the colony soon was thriving.
The first few pages of Jamestowne Ancestors tell the early history of colony. This section contains a number of maps, even showing the plots of land owned by the early settlers. The 1608 map of James Fort and the diagram of the site show the original settlement and the progression of present-day archaeological work undertaken there. Other maps show the growth of the colony beyond Jamestown Island throughout the seventeenth century, first as shires, then as plantations and hundreds. If you have early Jamestowne ancestry, you may be able to see exactly where the families lived.
The next sections include an explanation of terms found in old Jamestowne documents and a bibliography of documents examined in the preparation of this book.
The remaining 75% or so of the book contains a list of approximately 1,000 persons who are known to have owned land or resided on Jamestown Island between 1607 and 1699. They are listed alphabetically along with their known dates of residence in Jamestown, their official position in the colony (landowner, burgess, etc.), and their place of origin or county of residence.
The entries for each person are brief but offer glimpses of each individual's standing within the community. Here are a couple of the listings, chosen at random:
Name: Bland, John
Time period: 1572-1632
Role: Member, Virginia Company
Origin or County Represented: London, England
Name: Mansell, David
Time period: 1640
Origin or County Represented: Johnson's Neck, Archer's Hope Neck of Land
Jamestowne Ancestors 1607-1699 obviously is a valuable work for researching early ancestry in the colony. It also will help establish eligibility for membership in a number of hereditary societies that require proof of descent from an early Virginia ancestor.
Jamestowne Ancestors 1607-1699 - Commemoration of the 400th Anniversary of the Landing at James Towne 1607-2007 is a slim, 108-page hardbound book published by Genealogical Publishing Company. You can purchase it from most any bookstore if you specify ISBN 0806317671. You can also purchase it directly from the publisher for $20.00 plus shipping and taxes, if any. For more information, or to order the book directly via a safe and secure online shopping cart system, click here.