The story of the people who founded Jamestown and of the Virginia Indians they encountered is told through film, gallery exhibits, and living history. Expansive gallery exhibits and an introductory film trace Jamestown's beginnings in England and the first century of the Virginia colony and describe the cultures of the Powhatan Indians, Europeans, and Africans who converged in 1600s Virginia. Outdoors, visitors can board replicas of the three ships that sailed from England to Virginia in 1607, explore life-size re-creations of the colonists' fort and a Powhatan village, and tour a seasonal riverfront discovery area to learn about European, Powhatan, and African economic activities associated with water. In the outdoor areas, costumed historical interpreters describe daily life in the early 17th century.
Guided tours of the museum's living-history areas are offered several times daily.