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Filing Cabinet - Jamestown

Jane Pierce

Jane Pierce, the daughter of Captain William Pierce and his wife Joan., set out on her journey to the New World in 1609 with the group of 500 new settlers destined for the Jamestown settlement.

Jane traveled to the new colony of Virginia with her mother on the Blessing, one of nine ships that traveled together in consort from England.  Captain Pierce traveled with the other leaders on the flagship, the Sea Venture.  The violent hurricane battered the ships and separated Jane’s ship from that of her father’s.  Weeks later, the Blessing straggled into Jamestown, but when her father’s ship never arrived, Jane and her mother believed Captain Pierce had been lost at sea.

They had little time to grieve, however, as their focus was on surviving the terrible Starving Time during that first winter, where disease, lack of food, and Indian attacks killed over eight percent of the remaining voyagers.  Both Jane and her mother were among the few survivors come spring.

Then in May, 1610, some ten months after they said goodbye to her father, Jane, along with her mother, enjoyed a thrilling, unexpected reunion with Captain Pierce when the survivors of the Sea Venture shipwreck on Bermuda arrived at Jamestown.

Jane grew up in Jamestown learning from her mother, known as the master gardener of the Jamestown settlement. 

John Rolfe became well-acquainted with Captain Pierce during the Sea Venture voyage and the ten months stranded on the island of Bermuda.  Upon the tragic death of his wife, Rebecca (Pocahontas) in England in 1617, John Rolfe returned to Jamestown. 

In 1619, Jane married John Rolfe. They had a daughter, Elizabeth, in 1620. She died in 1635 at the age of 15.

Jane’s husband, John Rolfe, died in 1622.

The mother of a two year old girl, Jane remarried that year to Captain Roger Smith.

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