Jordans-Journey: the Story Behind the Name

Samuel Jordan was evidently the first Jordan to settle in English America. Some reports say that Samuel was born in Lyme Regis, Dorset County, England, and his birth year is given as 1575 or 1578.  Samuel was on the ship Sea Venture that shipwrecked in Bermuda in July 1609. The survivors constructed two ships, and eventually they continued to Jamestown, arriving in May 1610.  Within a few years, Samuel established a plantation at a place that he called “JORDAN’S JOURNEY”, located on the south side of the James River more than thirty miles upstream from Jamestown (near the present town of Hopewell and at a point where the Benjamin Harrison Memorial Bridge now crosses the river).   The early settlers were dependent on water transport, and they settled up and down the banks of the James River much as an ancient Greek writer described his fellow countrymen settling around the Aegean, “like frogs around a pond.”

Thomas Jordan, believed to be a son of Samuel, came to the colony in the year 1623 (the year of Samuel’s death).  Y-DNA analysis shows that I am related to Thomas, but it appears that I am not a direct descendant. Based on further DNA analysis and other evidence, I believe my ancestor was a cousin of Samuel and Thomas who came to Virginia some years after the original Jamestown settlement.  Nevertheless, I have appropriated the name “Jordans-Journey” for this Blog.