Williamsburg

Colonial Virginia

What was it like to live long ago when Virginia belonged to England? When there were no cars, no computers, few hospitals and no free public schools?

Without cars, trains or airplanes, people traveled by boat, horseback or on foot by "shank's mare". The reason so many colonial towns were located next to rivers is that often the roads were terrible seas of mud. It was so much easier to travel on the rivers!

Amazing Mazes

Getting lost in a cornfield maze is an October tradition for many families. Aside from tall fields of corn, mazes can be made with stone walls, hedges, mirrors, and more. Finding your way out of the puzzle can be a heck of a good time, and mazes have a lot of history behind them, too.

Williamsburg's Glorious Gardens

By Roger Foley

Go to catalog

Over 117 pages of brilliant photos explore the glorious formal and informal gardens of Williamsburg.

Reserve this title

The Gardens of Colonial Williamsburg

By M. Kent Brinkley

Go to catalog

"The authors present the history of gardening on twenty sites at Colonial Williamsburg, focusing on the eighteenth-century gardeners who planted them and the documentary and archaeological research that guided each garden's re-creation. Detailed plans and captivating photographs identify the plantings and show modern gardeners ways to enjoy the beauty of colonial gardens in their own yards."

Reserve this title

Archaeology and the Colonial Gardener

By Audrey Noel Hume

Go to catalog

Gardening meets archaeology in this publication from the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.
Available to read in our Virginiana Room at the Headquarters branch.

Reserve this title

Flight from Monticello: Thomas Jefferson at War

If your early education taught you something about Thomas Jefferson, it likely included facts on his part in authoring the Declaration of Independence, the Louisiana Purchase, and the Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom. Jefferson was an ideas man—a deep thinker. Well-educated in the classics at the College of William and Mary, he stayed out of the usual undergrad troubles by keeping at his studies and socializing with the professors while classmates spent their time drinking, gambling, and racing their horses through the streets. As historian Michael Kranish relates in Flight from Monticello, he made plenty of friends, but they were from the same landed gentry class as himself.

He first encountered an upstart farmer named Patrick Henry at a friend’s dinner party. Jefferson was not impressed by his dress, candid manners or frank speech, which drew a crowd of admirers. Not so much the classical scholar, Patrick Henry was already a practicing attorney while Jefferson was still in school.  While Jefferson carried on learned conversations with his professors, Henry was winning cases—not with references to Greek and Roman scholars but by spelling out the plain merits of the case and the rules of law. Jefferson found his courtroom arguments crude but admired his ability to turn a phrase and set a crowd on fire.

A Williamsburg Household

By Joan Anderson

Go to catalog
Focuses on events in the household of a white family and its black slaves in Colonial Williamsburg in the eighteenth century.
Reserve this title

Williamsburg

By Zachary Kent

Go to catalog
A history of Virginia's colonial capital from its earliest days through its restoration into a major tourist attraction.
Reserve this title

A Colonial Town, Williamsburg

By Bobbie Kalman

Go to catalog

Take part in the founding of Williamsburg, Virginia and its restoration. Travel down its cobblestone streets at a time when Virginia was a colony of England.
(Publisher's description)

Reserve this title

Colonial Williamsburg

By Sandra Steen and Susan Steen

Go to catalog
A look at Colonial Williamsburg, both from the historical point of view and from the viewpoint of its reconstruction so popular with tourists today.
Reserve this title