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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Date: July 05, 2007
Maps available for Capt. John Smith’s Trail
River trail follows explorer’s footstep
(RICHMOND) – A new set of maps to help today’s travelers explore the route of Captain John Smith’s adventures along the York River and its tributaries is now available. The boat and partial auto tour along the York, Mattaponi and Pamunkey rivers was developed to complement America’s 400th Anniversary. The route includes 36 recreation sites, historic places and museums between Zoar State Forest and Yorktown.
“The John Smith interpretive maps on the York, Pamunkey and Mattaponi rivers provide an excellent addition to the existing John Smith maps on the James River,” said Virginia Department of Conservation and Recreation Director Joseph H. Maroon. “Both maps were produced by DCR through a close working relationship with the Virginia Tourism Corporation and the Virginia Council on Indians and are the first to be developed along the newly designated Captain John Smith Chesapeake National Historic Trial. The maps will help to make the history and natural resources of the region come alive for trail users.”
The trail is divided into three maps – one for each river – each a day trip for boaters and motorists alike. In addition to a narrative that tells the story of John Smith and his travels along the York River and its tributaries, the maps provide travelers with information on the amenities available at each site and the location of boating ramps. The maps also provide information on the Indian settlements that were noted on Smith's early maps of the area.
“When people think of Yorktown, they think of events associated with the Revolutionary War, but the area is rich in Virginia Indian history as well.” says Deanna Beacham, program specialist for VCI. “Not far from Yorktown, an Indian community called Kiskiack was a commercial center when the English arrived in 1607. Farther west along the York, Werowocomoco was an important sociopolitical center for hundreds of years before Smith first met paramount chief Powhatan there in 1607.”
“Whether you explore the trail from a car or a kayak, you’ll discover unspoiled river views, eagles, heron, osprey and a variety of other wildlife,” said VTC President Alisa Bailey. “You can also experience a diversity of interpretive experiences from the archaeology at York River State Park to the Indian reservations and other museums and visitor centers.”
Maps of the trail are currently available at York River State Park, the Yorktown Victory Center, the York County Historical Museum and the Gloucester Visitor Center. By mid-July, maps will be available at sites along the route and from Virginia Welcome Centers and regional visitor centers. Individuals can also obtain maps through DCR's online store. To order, visit www.dcr.virginia.gov and click on “State Parks” then “Visit Online Store.”
In addition to the map, the www.johnsmithtrail.org website is being updated to provide links to attractions, restaurants, tours, lodging, and other visitor amenities along the trail to help you plan your visit.