For many years it was assumed by scholars that the original James Fort constructed by English colonists in 1607 at the site of Jamestown, Virginia (the first permanent English colony in America) had long been claimed for oblivion by the waters of the nearby James River; however, since 1994, the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities, in conjunction with the University of Virginia, has conducted excavations that have revealed thousands of artifacts and soil features clearly identified with the Fort. Thus far, these excavations have uncovered most of the palisade wall lines, bulwarks, cellars, and buildings that were all part of the original James Fort configuration. This is the "glamour dig" of American historical archaeology. It is meticulously executed, well managed, and extremely well documented and published. An ongoing account of the discoveries can be found by going to the website.
You can also apply to be part of this investigation. Dr. William Kelso of the University of Virginia leads a formal field school during the summer of 2010. The field school is designed to teach theory and methods of field work in American Historical Archaeology. Students will learn how to investigate the features related to James Fort and to identify and interpret 17th century European and Native American artifacts. In addition, upon successful completion of the program, students will receive six (6) graduate credits in Anthropology from the University of Virginia. You should know that this would involve a six-week commitment, provided your application is accepted......and if it isn't in the cards for you now, it might be worth keeping it in mind for the future. For more detailed information about the field school and the application requirements, go to www.apva.org/fldschl.html.