Our Rich Cultural Heritage
The Mattaponi are a Native American tribe that has inhabited the eastern region of Virginia for thousands of years. The name "Mattaponi" comes from the Algonquian language and can be translated to “Landing Place” or "River of Highbanks". The tribe is recognized by the state of Virginia and has a reservation located along the banks of the Mattaponi River in King William County.
Our Long History
After thousands of years of living in Virginia, the Mattaponi’s long history of interaction with European colonizers begins with the arrival of English settlers in the early 1600s. The tribe played a role in the early years of the Jamestown settlement, and our oral history which has been passed down for generations, contains the true story of John Smith and Pocahontas.
Today, the Mattaponi continue to maintain their traditional practices and way of life. We are also engaging with the wider world through education, business, and cultural outreach. We are a tribe with around 450 enrolled descendants and are proud of our heritage and are dedicated to preserving our culture and traditions for future generations.