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The Printed World: Masterpieces of Seventeenth-Century Printmaking

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Ould Virginia: A Description of Part of the Adventures of Cap: Smith in Virginia

1624 (published in London)
10 7/8 x 14 in. (27.6 x 35.6 cm)

John Smith (1580 - 1631)
Robert Vaughan (circa 1600 - before 1664) Primary

Medium and Support: engraving on paper
Credit Line: Museum Purchase
Accession Number: H2006.36.01

The Printed World: Masterpieces of Seventeenth-Century Printmaking
Joel and Lila Harnett Museum of Art
February 03 through March 24, 2019
By 1609, the Powhatan tribe realized that the English settlers were there to stay. The Native Americans began attacking the settlers, killing their livestock and burning their plants. In the following years, the colonists conducted search-and-destroy raids on Powhatan settlements. Both sides committed atrocities against the other until the Powhatans were forced into a truce. As the English settlements in Virginia expanded, the population and self-governance of the Powhatan tribe decreased.


News of the Colonies: Prints, Maps, and Perceptions of the New World
January 23, 2007 to April 28, 2007
This compilation of scenes from the adventures of John Smith in Virginia were based upon the earlier engravings of Theodor de Bry and provide a synopsis of Smith’s relations with the native Powhatans of the region.
The scene at bottom right, once thought to depict Pocohontas’ rescue of Smith from death, is now interpreted as reflecting the ceremonial induction of the colonist into Powhatan society. Note the inclusion of Smith’s map of Virginia, which played a formative role in European depictions of the region for nearly a century. (Anna Kim, graduate student, Jan. 2007)

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