Events

American Evolution Events and Programs include a series of extraordinary projects ranging from special exhibitions, documentary film, scholarly works, interpretive centers, and digital applications to reinforce 1619 history, commemoration themes and Virginia’s role in the creation of the United States and its ongoing leadership in education, tourism and economic development.

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November 10, 2018 - January 5, 2020
Jamestown Settlement, 2110 Jamestown Rd
Williamsburg, VA 23185 United States
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This year-long special exhibition will feature captivating and little-known personal stories from three cultures - Virginia Indian, English, and West Central African - that illustrate the roles women played in the founding years of the United States of America. Using objects, images, and primary sources, this story-driven exhibition will explore key themes in women’s history such as the sphere of influence within each culture, shared experiences, contributions to the early economy, education and keeping culture, innovators and outliers, rights in…

December 10, 2018 - December 7, 2019
Library of Virginia, 800 E Broad Street
Richmond, VA 23219 United States
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The Library of Virginia, working in partnership with Virginia Humanities, is developing a statewide project that explores the implications of immigration and the experiences of immigrants as they come to Virginia. Some will have come to this country seeking new opportunity; others as refugees fleeing war and hardship. Keeping in mind that the stated goals of 2019 Commemoration include exploring the historical and continuous journey toward the ideals of America and fostering an honest and serious discussion about diversity and…

March 20, 2019 - March 23, 2019
Virginia Union University, 1500 N Lombardy St
Richmond, VA 23220 United States
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The Virginia Council of Churches, and the School of Theology at Virginia Union University will convene a conference focusing on “The Missiology of Jamestown 1619 and Its Implications” to explore long-standing assumptions related to Christian mission. The conference and resulting publication will focus on religion in 1619 Jamestown, its impact on Native Americans and Africans, and the origins of a religious and culturally diverse 21st-century America. What ideologies and religious beliefs motivated the Jamestown explorers? How did certain theologies of…

April 1, 2019 - September 30, 2019
Historic Jamestowne, 1368 Colonial Parkway
Jamestown, Virginia 23081
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Jamestown Rediscovery and the National Park Service will focus on the establishment of representative government and rule of law, protections for private property, and sustained encounters among different peoples – Native Americans, Europeans, and Africans – who first came together at Jamestown. Projects will include: Public archaeology featuring excavations open to the public in and immediately around the Memorial Church at Historic Jamestowne. The excavations will investigate the remains of the original church built in Jamestown in 1617, where the first General Assembly…

April 12, 2019 - April 13, 2019
Charlottesville, Virginia + Google Map

Virginia College and University teams will compete in a “March Madness” style innovation tournament to identify promising solutions to some of the most vexing challenges that have faced America since 1619. Teams will vie for the historic Steeple Cup, a reproduction of 16th and early 17th-century elaborate drinking vessels that were offered as grand prizes in lotteries, including those operated by the Virginia Company of London.

May 3, 2019 - May 4, 2019
Chrysler Hall, 215 St Pauls Boulevard
Norfolk, VA 23510 United States
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The 2019 Commemoration and the Virginia Arts Festival have commissioned the Dance Theatre of Harlem to choreograph a new ballet that deepens our understanding of the original three cultures of Virginia (Indian, English, and African-American) and the ongoing impact of diversity in America today. Three premiere performances and educational outreach are planned for 2019 season: NORFOLK: May 3-4 BLACKSBURG: Sept. 14 NORTHERN VA/DC: TBA  

May 20, 2019 - May 23, 2019
Charlottesville, Richmond, and Williamsburg, Virginia + Google Map

The original settlers of Jamestown were by and large young pioneers who changed the world. The Commemoration brings young political, governmental and civic leaders from over 50 countries to the “Presidential Precinct” (the restored homes of United States Presidents Jefferson, Madison and Monroe, all near Charlottesville), Colonial Williamsburg and the grounds of two leading American universities. During a multi-day event, the emerging leaders along with Virginia students from leading academic institutions reflect on the challenges of leadership, governance and civic…

May 21, 2019 - May 23, 2019
Charlottesville, Virginia + Google Map

A bipartisan gathering of former White House officials, elected leaders, presidential scholars, business and media leaders, and other experts will drive a thoughtful discussion on the state of the presidency as a counterpoint to the divisive partisanship that permeates our 24-hour news cycle. The living former presidents will be invited to participate as keynote speakers. The event will also feature plenary sessions, discussions, workshops, interactive breakouts, and activities for students.

May 27, 2019 - May 28, 2019
VA United States + Google Map

The 2019 Commemoration and the Virginia Arts Festival have commissioned the Dance Theatre of Harlem to choreograph a new ballet that deepens our understanding of the original three cultures of Virginia (Indian, English, and African-American) and the ongoing impact of diversity in America today. Three premiere performances and educational outreach are planned for 2019 season: NORFOLK: May 3-4 BLACKSBURG: Sept. 14 NORTHERN VA/DC: May 27-29  

June 19, 2019 - January 5, 2020
Virginia Museum of History & Culture, 428 N Boulevard
Richmond, VA 23220 United States
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The Virginia Museum of History & Culture exhibition will explore the African American experience from the arrival of the first Africans in English North America in 1619 to the present day. Throughout this 400- year-long history, blacks have been central to debates about America’s national identity, as well as to American economic, political, and cultural life. This exhibition charts the advances and setbacks, the triumphs and trials of African Americans on their long and unfinished journey toward full equality by…

July 29, 2019 @ 8:00 am - July 30, 2019 @ 5:00 pm
Historic Jamestowne, 1368 Colonial Parkway
Jamestown, Virginia 23081
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The 400th anniversary of the first representative assembly in the western hemisphere was held in Jamestown’s church in the summer of 1619. Members of the Virginia General Assembly, Congress and state legislatures nationwide will convene for a special commemorative event. This event will be held at both Historic Jamestowne and Jamestown Settlement. 

July 31, 2019 - August 1, 2019
Williamsburg, Virginia + Google Map

The first “general assembly” composed of men from each of Virginia’s eleven major settlements met for the first time at Jamestown from July 30-August 4, 1619, planting the seed of democracy in America. The commemoration will bring together representatives from democracies around the world, including the British Parliament, members of U.S. Congress, and representatives from state legislatures nationwide. The International Forum will highlight the historic impact of democracy on our nation and its impact on the world.

August 24, 2019 - August 25, 2019
Fort Monroe, 23651 + Google Map

To commemorate the 400th Anniversary of the arrival of the first enslaved Africans in English North America, the 2019 Commemoration will showcase the dedication ceremony with hosts, Fort Monroe Authority (FMA) and the National Park Service (NPS).  This project involves the renovation of the former Coast Artillery School Library at Fort Monroe and the addition of two wings. In these galleries we will tell the profound stories of Captain John Smith, the arrival of the first enslaved Africans, and the culmination…

September 26, 2019 - September 27, 2019
Norfolk State University, 700 Park Ave
Norfolk, VA 23504 United States
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This two-day cross cultural event will begin with the exploration of the contributions and influences of the three founding cultures African, Native Peoples, and English. This expanding cultural tapestry of our nation will be explored by celebrated scholars, artists, film makers, musicians, and students from throughout the nation. Conversations and interactive panel discussions (in person and online) will cover a range of topics that are relevant to the cultural heritage and diversity of our nation 400 years later.

October 14, 2019
Capitol Square, 1000 Bank St
Richmond, VA 23219 United States
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The first in the nation monument dedicated to women on state capitol grounds will be in Virginia. The dedication ceremony will recognize the full range of women’s achievements by honoring 12 historic Virginia women enshrined by the monument. The dedication ceremony will be held on Columbus Day and be open to the public.

October 15, 2019
Richmond, Virginia,

The two-day summit will be a multi-faceted, interactive event to honor women 400 years ago, today, and in the future. The focus of each day will be unique; on the first day, Women’s Legacy in America and the second day, A Vision of the Future of Women in America. On both days, participants will engage (attending and online) in conversations regarding the role of women in all aspects of society, business, and community, and the power of women’s involvement and…

November 3, 2019
Berkeley Plantation, 12602 Harrison Landing Rd.
Charles City, VA 23030-3339 United States
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Upon safe arrival at Berkeley Hundred on December 4, 1619, a group of English settlers held a ceremony of thanks which was to be observed annually and perpetually. The Virginia Thanksgiving Festival event will showcase cultural performances and a re-enactment of the first official English Thanksgiving in North America. Unique cause marketing opportunities are planned.

November 8, 2019 - November 10, 2019
Richmond, Virginia,

This multi-day culminating signature event will be staged on the grounds adjacent to Jamestown Settlement in Williamsburg. The event will honor the early beginnings of America with the three cultures present in 1619 Virginia: English, African and Virginia Indian and showcase their contributions along with those of other cultures and immigrants that have helped to shape our nation over 400 years. A fully interactive immersive living-history and entertainment program will be offered. The festival will present traditional and contemporary expressions…

November 14, 2019 - November 17, 2019
Byrd Theatre, 2908 West Cary Street
Richmond, VA 23221 United States
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The mission of the Pocahontas Reframed: Native American Storytellers Film Festival is both educational and cultural. The Film Festival will showcase new films which do not have access to cinema screens and commercial film distribution in the United States. The Film Festival allows students and the general public to learn about, appreciate, and enjoy American Indian, First Nations and Indigenous culture(s), language(s), and cinema.