Signs Along the Riverwalk

The idea for interpretive signs along the Yorktown Riverwalk dates back to the Focus on Yorktown Workshop that was conducted in 1989 as the kick-off for the Yorktown Waterfront revitalization process. In those discussions, someone noted that there were lots of significant attractions and bits of history that existed or could be told along the waterfront - they referred to them as "pearls" - and that we needed to "string the pearls" - both with a nice walkway as well as interpretive information about each. This idea became a part of the adopted Yorktown Master Plan but obviously could not be implemented until all the construction activities were completed and, even after the construction was completed, we struggled with trying to figure out what subjects should be covered and what the signs' content should be.


Early in 2009, the County Staff Liaison to the York County Historical Committee was asked if this might be something the Historical Committee and other associates that could be assembled might be willing to take on. A group of experts in Yorktown history was quickly formed and they began brainstorming about topics and then delved into the research phase to ensure that the sign content would be both interesting and historically accurate. By the fall of 2009, the group had developed the proposed content and placement of 28 signs, covering a variety of interesting subjects related to Yorktown and York County. Further editing and refinement of the content continued through the end of 2009 and early 2010.

Final Proposals

A final proposal was presented to the Board of Supervisors in late Spring and with the enthusiastic support of the Board, the signs were ordered in June 2010. The project was officially completed with a ribbon-cutting ceremony on December 7, 2010.
The sign project highlights 28 significant aspects of Yorktown and York County History, and is comprised of thirty signs (28 historical, two introductory) at 15 locations along the County's Yorktown waterfront, extending approximately a half mile from the fishing pier to the Watermen's Museum. Strolling and stopping to read the signs serves as a very pleasurable walk and educational opportunity for visitors to historic Yorktown.


"Signs Along the Riverwalk" is a collaborative effort between the York County Historical Museum, the County of York, the Jamestown-Yorktown Foundation, the Watermen's Museum and the National Park Service.