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The African American Experience

During the 18th century, half of Williamsburg’s population was Black. Learn more about the daily life and culture of African Virginians.

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Meet Our Nation Builders

Nation Builders portray real historic figures associated with 18th-century Williamsburg who made significant contributions to the American story. Meet a Nation Builder during your visit who helped shape their time, and whose legacy continues to influence and inspire American ideals.

Gowan Pamphlet

James Armistead Lafayette

Explore the Galleries

By African American Hands Self-Guided Tour

Take a self-guided tour of the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg. Use this resource to learn more about artworks in our collections and the African Americans who created them.

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Williamsburg Bray School

Colonial Williamsburg and William & Mary have identified a building that once housed the Williamsburg Bray School, an 18th-century institution dedicated to the education of enslaved and free Black children. Now, we are working to share the complex history of what is likely the oldest extant building in the United States dedicated to the education of Black children – and the stories of those who were part of it.

First Baptist Church Excavation Project

Colonial Williamsburg has partnered with the First Baptist Church of Williamsburg and the Let Freedom Ring Foundation to locate the remains of the Nassau Street site of the First Baptist Church. The First Baptist Church of Williamsburg is one of the country’s earliest African American congregations and was founded by free and enslaved Black worshippers.

Explore Virtually

Virtual Tour of the Randolph Site

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Slavery & Remembrance

This online resource tells the story of the creation and evolution of the transatlantic slave trade, slavery, and their legacies.

Created Equal

This is a museum theatre exploration of African American perspectives on the Declaration, the revolutions it inspired, and the ongoing struggle for equality and freedom in America.

Read Blogs

Resources for Understanding Race and Inequality Through History

Telling Their Stories

The Benjamin Lewis Spraggins, Sr. Sociable Carriage

200 Years of Returns: A Cross-Cultural Collaboration

Restoring Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church Cemetery Posts

Bringing the Past to Life: From Archaeologists to Actors

Watch Videos

Black History Month

More than half of 18th-century Williamsburg residents were African American. Join us every February for Black History Month and discover their untold stories of those who lived, loved, and strove to create a better future.

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Plan Your Visit

Admission Tickets

To experience all that the Historic Area has to offer, including tours of original 18th-century buildings, personal interaction with townspeople, vibrant gardens, two museums, and so much more—you’ll need an admission ticket.

Stay With Us

Enjoy Colonial Williamsburg to the fullest with a stay at one of our five unique hotel properties. They are conveniently located within and surrounding the Historic Area, just minutes from all the action.

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