Subscribe to Archaeology

19th-Century Church Foundation Found in Colonial Williamsburg

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Virginia First Baptist Church FoundationsWILLIAMSBURG, VIRGINIA—According to a report in The Virginia Gazette, the foundations of First Baptist Church, one of the first congregations to have been founded by free and enslaved African Americans, have been uncovered in Colonial Williamsburg, near the intersection of Nassau and Francis streets. The structure, built in 1856, was spotted with ground-penetrating radar earlier this year. Archaeologist Jack Gary of Colonial Williamsburg said the excavation has also uncovered the foundations of a smaller building at the site and a posthole that could date to the late eighteenth century. “What’s exciting about that is that there’s intact stuff out here that hasn’t been completely disturbed by other activity,” he said. It is not clear yet if the earlier foundation could be from the congregation’s first Meeting House, which was constructed in 1818. “It is possible they are connected, but more extensive excavation will be needed to make that determination,” Gary explained. Pieces of ceramic, glass, bricks, and nails have also been recovered. To read about a tombstone that has lain for centuries in the Jamestown church, go to "Knight Watch."

Advertisement

Advertisement


Advertisement