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International Students in Virginia

Posted on September 27th, 2011 by Jenny Frankel

International students in Virginia might be interested in visiting the Historic Triangle. Jamestown, Yorktown and Williamsburg are three points that make up the Historic Triangle in Virginia.

This notable shape carries much significance in the origins of the United States. For over 10,000 years people have inhabited this tiny area of the globe.

Arriving on the ships Susan Constant, Godspeed and Discover in 1607, settlers came to Jamestown Island to establish the first permanent English settlement in the New World, hoping to make a profit for themselves and the Virginia Company of London.

Native Americans could be hostile to the settlers, famine and disease plagued the settlers and more were interested in hunting for gold than planting crops.

Eventually tobacco was discovered as a profitable crop in 1614 and led to the success of Jamestown.

Today, international students in Virginia can explore three replicas of the original ships that brought the settlers to Jamestown, 13 years before the pilgrims landed in Massachusetts, as well as a life size recreations of the colonists’ fort and Powhatan village.

Halfway between the James and York rivers lay Williamsburg, originally named Middle Plantation. King William and Queen Mary granted a royal charter to the College of William and Mary in 1693, making it one of the oldest colleges in the United States, second only to Harvard University.

In fact, it was five college students that lobbied to locate the new statehouse at Williamsburg, replacing the one that had burned at Jamestown.

The main street, Duke of Gloucester, 99-feet wide, runs about a mile, anchored at the west end by William and Mary and forms a preferred corridor for student joggers.

By the mid 18th century, Yorktown was a bustling international port full of shops and taverns, with great tobacco exports and goods inbound from Great Britain and the West Indies as well as an active slave port.

During the revolutionary war in 1781, Yorktown became the site of a pinnacle battle. After the British invaded Yorktown, American forces attacked, causing the British to surrender after a storm made it impossible for them to retreat.

International students in Virginia can visit the Yorktown Victory Center, a museum of the American Revolution, which showcases the United State’s evolution from colonial status to nationhood using film and exhibits.

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