Champ on Champ! Young boxer Emmanuel carried shoulder high by one of the most decorated boxing coaches in James Town.

James Town

📷: Nana Osei - 2016

#Jamestown #Accra #Ghana #Africa #Boxing #boxer #Emmanuel #sports #extremesports #champ #coach #decorated #nopainnogain #gym #photography #visiterlafrique #dynamicafrica #everydayafrica (at Ga- James Town)

Yesterday the forensic anthropology team at our Museum of Natural History announced the discovery of four early leaders of historic Jamestown found buried under a excavated church. 

Over on smithsonian3d‘s website, you can explore the site in 3D and take interactive tours created by our anthropologists as they guide you through how they used forensics and historical records to identify these men


Here’s a couple of pictures I took back in May of the ongoing excavation of James Fort/Jamestown. This is the cellar where archaeologists made the gruesome discovery of the body of an approximately 14-year-old female whose remains had clear indicators of butchery.

(Source: X)

Named “Jane” by the researchers who examined her, she is the only known victim of survival cannibalism at the settlement, though texts from the time suggest other individuals suffered the same fate during the period known as the Starving Time. Jane’s cause of death is unknown, and it is not certain whether her death was directly related to survival cannibalism or if she died of other causes before her remains were eaten (though the latter is more likely).

Jane’s skull (as well as several other bones that show obvious cut marks) are currently on display at The Nathalie P. and Alan M. Voorhees Archaearium. Pictures are not allowed within this museum, but more images (and discussion) of her remains can be found here and the press release about the discovery and analysis can be found here.


While excavating the remains of Jamestown – the first successful English colony in North America – archeologists discovered the skeletons of some of the colony’s leaders. 

Buried with one of the bodies was a silver box inscribed with the letter “M”. The box was too fragile to open, so scientists used a CT scanner to look inside. They discovered a tiny lead capsule and a few bone fragments.

Bill Kelso, the project’s top archaeologist, says the capsule is “a lead vessel that would hold holy water, oil or blood; and the bone would be that of a saint. Put together, this is a very holy object.” He thinks the colonist may have retained his Roman Catholic faith in secret. 

Read more about the recent Jamestown discoveries here.       

Images Courtesy of Smithsonian X 3D        

May 13, 1607: Colonists Arrive in Virginia to Found Jamestown

On this day in 1607, around 100 English colonists arrived at the James River in Virginia to found Jamestown. The settlers of the new colony were immediately besieged by attacks from Algonquian natives, rampant disease, and internal political strife. In their first winter, more than half of the colonists perished from famine and illness.

Explore Secrets of the Dead’s Jamestown interactive. 

Photo: 2008 photo of the remains of the 1639 Jamestown Church tower with 20th century reconstruction on the original foundations (Wikipedia).

Identities of Mysterious Jamestown Settlers Revealed

Four lost leaders of the first permanent English settlement in the Americas have been identified, thanks to chemical analysis of their skeletons, as well as historical documents.

The settlement leaders were mostly high-status men who were buried at the 1608 Jamestown church in Virginia. And all played pivotal roles in the early colony.

“They’re very much at the heart of the foundation of the America that we know today,” said Douglas Owsley, a forensic anthropologist at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., who helped identify the bodies.

By analyzing the bones, researchers can get a snapshot of what it was like to live during the earliest days of America, Owsley said. Read more.