Forgot your password?  

Resources for students & teachers

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 46 pages of information about New Discoveries at Jamestown.

A few ornamental brass book clasps excavated near Jamestown may have been used on early Bibles and Prayer Books.  Under the care of Bruton Parish Episcopal Church in Willamsburg are four pieces of communion silver which were used in the church at Jamestown.  Two pieces, an exquisite chalice and paten, were donated to the Jamestown church by Lt.  Gov.  Francis Morrison (or Moryson) in 1661.  Inscribed on both is the legend:  “Mixe not holy thinges with profane.”  A second paten, made in London in 1691-92, was given to the Jamestown Church by Gov.  Edmund Andros in 1694.  Another paten, or a collection plate (also made in London), bears the inscription:  “For the use of James City Parish Church.”

[Illustration:  Decorated brass book clasps found near Jamestown which may have been used on an early Bible or Prayer book]

The officials of the Virginia Company of London, admonishing the first settlers to serve and fear God in order to plant a successful and prosperous colony, advised: 

Lastly and chiefly the way to prosper and achieve good success is to make yourselves all of one mind for the good of your country and your own, and to serve and fear God the Giver of all Goodness, for every plantation which our Heavenly Father hath not planted shall be rooted out.

Seemingly the advice was carried out, for from the small settlement on a tiny island in the James River grew a great and mighty nation.

[Illustration:  Communion silver used in the Jamestown church after 1661.  Both the chalice and paten were made in London, and donated to the church by LtGovFrancis Morrison (or Moryson) in 1661.  On both pieces is the legend:  “Mixe not holy thinges with profane.”]

Select Bibliography

Bailey, worth.  “Concerning Jamestown Pottery—­Past and Present.”
  Ceramic Age, pp. 101-104.  October 1937.
——.  “Joseph Copeland, 17th Century Pewterer.” The Magazine Antiques,
  pp. 188-190.  April 1938.
——.  “Lime Preparation at Jamestown in the Seventeenth Century.”
  William and Mary College Quarterly, pp. 1-12.  January 1938.
——.  “Notes on the Use of Pewter in Virginia During the Seventeenth
  Century.” William and Mary College Quarterly, pp. 227-241.  April
  1938.

Bruce, Phillip Alexander. Economic History of Virginia in the
  Seventeenth Century
. 2 Vols.  New York.  Peter Smith. 1935.

Forman, Henry Chandler. Jamestown and St. Mary’s.  Baltimore.  The Johns
  Hopkins Press. 1938.
——.  “The Old Hardware of James Town.” The Magazine Antiques, pp.
  30-32.  January 1941.

Follow Us on Facebook