Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
The Historic Triangle is located on the Virginia Peninsula of the United States and includes the colonial communities of Jamestown, Williamsburg, and Yorktown, with many restored attractions linked by the Colonial Parkway.
The National Park Service's Colonial Parkway joins the three popular attractions of Colonial Virginia with a scenic and bucolic roadway carefully shielded from views of commercial development. This helps visitors mentally return to the past, and there are often views of wildlife and waterfowl. This two lane roadway is the best (but nor quickest) way to move between the three points. Near the James River and York River ends of the parkway, there are several pull-offs, where some families allow their children to feed bread to the seagulls. (Warning: No trucks are allowed).
For an even better experience, some vistors approach the area from the south by water from Surry County via Virginia State Highway 31 and a ride aboard one of the Jamestown Ferrys, which include the Pocahontas and Williamsburg. As passengers cross, they can can walk about the boat or go up to an enclosed viewing level with restrooms. Weather and daylight permitting, passengers usually see the Jamestown Island much as the first colonists may have approached it. In fact, the replicas of Christopher Newport's the three tiny ships, Susan Constant, Godspeed, and Discovery are docked near the northern ferry landing. Both the Jamestown Ferry and Colonial Parkway are toll-free.
The first permanent English settlement in the New World which was established at Jamestown in 1607. Today, you can visit the Jamestown Festival Park and Jamestown Island attractions. Included are recreations of a native american village and colonial fort, and archaeological sites where current work is underway.
In 1699, the first capital of Virginia was moved to Middle Plantation at the suggestion of students from the College of William and Mary (established 1693). It was soon renamed, which was Williamsburg, but became a largely forgotten little town of the capital was moved to Richmond in 1788. Largely due to the 20th century preservation efforts of the Reverend Dr. W.A.R. Goodwin, rector of Bruton Parish Church and the generosity of Standard Oil heir John D. Rockefeller Jr., today Colonial Williamsburg is a large living museum of early American life. It has dozens of restored and recreated buildings and reenactors. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world. The Visitor's Center (right off the Colonial Parkway) features a short movie and is an excellent place to start (and leave automobiles, which are restricted from the restored area, where wheelchair-accessible shuttle bus service is provided).
The third point of the triangle is Yorktown where General Cornwallis surrendered to George Washington in 1781, ending the American Revolution. There are two large visitor centers, battlefield drives, and a waterfront area.
Notwithstanding the amazingly successful efforts to provide a non-commercial atmosphere at the three Historic Triangle areas (and on the Colonial Parkway between them), there are many hotels, motels, campgrounds, restaurants, shops and stores, gasoline stations, and amusements close by.
- Williamsburg Pottery Factory is also nearby on U.S. Highway 60 a new miles west of Williamsburg in James City County.
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