The Historic Capital of the Monacan Indian Nation Named one of America's 11 Most Endangered Historic Places

Threatened for years by a water intake and pump station, the historic capital of the Monacan Indian Nation has been successfully listed in the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places program.

Rassawek, the historic capital and sacred site of the Monacan Indian Nation located at the confluence of the Rivanna River and James River in Fluvanna County, was a massive site that included bark covered houses, a large chief’s house, workshops, religious buildings, agricultural fields and burial sites.

The James River Water Authority, a joint venture of Louisa and Fluvanna Counties, proposes to build a pump station at Rassawek to deliver water to support development at Zion Crossroads, a nearby area slated for economic development. Researchers verified Rassawek’s location in the 1880s, the 1930s and the 1980s. It is the Monacan equivalent of Werowocomoco, the Powhatan capital now planned to be a national park. 

Earlier this year, Preservation Virginia included Rassawek in our statewide list of Virginia’s Most Endangered Historic Places. Still under threat, the site is now receiving national attention. The video below produced by the Monacan Indian Nation, Cultural Heritage Partners, Preservation Virginia and the National Trust helps tell the story:

This site is of national importance, and its listing to the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list shows the eyes of the nation are watching.

Tell the board of supervisors to Save Rassawek and seriously consider alternatives for the water intake and pumping station. Lend your voice by sending a letter here.

Make the change. Contact the board of supervisors today.