Footprint of Jamestown Fort Found

Hampton Roads Daily Press: Archaeologists working on the site of the James Fort, in Jamestown, VA, have announced that they have for the first time been able to map the exact location, shape, and size of the 1607 structure, the first permanent English settlement in America. Seven years after the discovery of evidence of the original fort built when Jamestown was founded -- the location of the fort's east corner -- this summer's digs have unearthed evidence of the fort's western wall and northern corner.

"Now we know exactly how to approach the excavation," said William Kelso, director of archaeology for the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities. "Now I feel extremely confident that we have the entire iceberg. We found out where to measure from. We connected all the dots. And that's made all the difference in what we know."

Some of the fort was covered by 10-foot-high walls of a Civil War earthwork. "The good news is that they didn't dig it all up during the Civil War," said Kelso. "They just piled the dirt up during construction. So all of it could still be there if we look."

Further information is also available on the website for the Jamestown Rediscovery Project of the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities (http://www.apva.org/jr.html) or the National Park Service's webpage for Historic Jamestowne (http://www.nps.gov/colo/Jamestwn/jamestown.htm).