Online reservations for this travel program are closed. If you are interested in being placed on a wait list, please contact Cathy Boe at (804) 342-9657 or atcathy@VirginiaHistory.org.
Join us for this members-only bus trip to historic Surry County, where we will visit Bacon’s Castle, Chippoke’s Plantation, and Smith’s Fort Plantation, and enjoy lunch at Smithfield Station on the banks of the Pagan River.
When the first English settlers sailed up the James River in 1607, they landed on the south side of the river near the present town of Claremont in Surry County. Here they visited the Quioughcohancock Indians, allies of the Powhatan Confederacy. They reported that they were graciously entertained during this visit with the American Indian inhabitants. These settlers went on to establish the first English settlement in the New World on Jamestown Island.
Our day in Surry County includes guided tours of three historic sites where we will learn about the region’s heritage and enjoy lunch at Smithfield Station on the banks of the Pagan River in Smithfield, Va.
Bacon’s Castle, about 1665 Bacon’s Castle is the oldest brick dwelling in North America and was once home to prosperous merchant and planter, Arthur Allen, and his family. The home features 17th-century English formal gardens restored by the Garden Club of Virginia and outbuildings, including an 1830s slave quarter.
Chippoke’s Plantation Established in 1619 by English Captain William Powell, a lieutenant governor of Jamestown, this 1,400-acre farm located opposite Jamestown Island has been the site of an active agricultural operation for nearly four centuries. Powell named the plantation after Choapoke, an Algonquian Indian Chief who was friendly to the English settlers in Jamestown.
After Powell’s death Chippokes changed hands frequently, most times serving as a secondary plantation managed by overseers or farmed by tenants. There are many historically significant buildings and structures that can still be found on the property, including the two plantation houses, original plantation outbuildings, slave quarters, farm buildings, and several colonial period archeological sites.
Smith’s Fort Plantation, about 1761 Smith’s Fort Plantation is located on the site of Captain John Smith’s planned “New Fort.” The land was given by Chief Wahunsenacawh (Powhatan) as a dowry for his daughter Pocahontas upon her marriage to John Rolfe. The 18th-century manor house retains much of its original woodwork and provides examples of early American and English period furnishings.
Virginia Journeys is a members-only travel program.
The reservation fee includes admission to the various sites, lunch, snacks and beverages provided while in transit, and transportation.
The reservation fee is nonrefundable. If a patron must cancel their reservation, we will treat the fee as a charitable contribution and the patron will receive a receipt for their tax purposes.