The Discovery of Fort San Juan is Changing History!

By Exploring Joara Foundation

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Discovering our Past

For the past 10 years, the Exploring Joara Foundation has invited the public, young and old, from near and far, to be a part of discovering our nation’s past. We have been a visible civic partner entrusted with engaging the community in helping us tell our story. This story has evolved over time from arrowheads found on local farmlands to the discovery of the Spanish Fort San Juan. Our story is literally changing history books. Did you know that nearly 20 years before The Lost Colony, 40 years before Jamestown, and 53 years before the Mayflower landed in Plymouth, the Spaniard Juan Pardo had built a series of six forts from the coast of South Carolina into the mountains of east Tennessee?

The Next Chapter in our Story

Our mission for the next 10 years is to build on the excitement we have created and continue to invite everyone to be a part of this "ground-breaking" exploration. We have many more stories to tell and much of our past still to uncover. Please help us imagine our next 10 year.

Please Help us Serve the Community.

$30,000 helps us fund:

20 Class field trips to EJF's "Living History Village"

20 Classroom Programs

10 Class field trips to the Berry Site

10 Berry Site Tours

12 EJF member "Dig Days"

6 Lab Nights at the Wall Center for Archaeological Research

2 Teacher Workshops

4 Weeks Archaeology Explorer's Camp

Your gift of any amount helps us deliver this important and unique programming.

And here’s some amazing perks for supporting us that you can’t live without

One year membership to the Exploring Joara Foundation

Discounts to "Dig Days" and Summer Camps

-Free or reduced access to special events
- Member Days and special tour days at the Berry Site
- Hands-on archaeology labs at the Wall Center
- Community Days at the Catawba Meadows Living History Village
- Academic presentations by experts in the field

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Team Members

Tina Matthews- Board Chair, EJF

Alan Darveaux- EJF Board Member

David Henry- EJF Vice Chair

Dawn Poore- EJF Executive Board

Dr. David Moore- Warren Wilson College

Dr. Seth Hawkins- EJF Board Member

Janice Rostan- EJF Board Member

Jessica Caudill- EJF Board Member

Linda Wall- EJF Board Member

Marie C. Palacios- Executive Director, EJF

Melissa Timo- Staff Archaeologist, EJF

Phillip Lane- EJF Board Member

Randy Loftis- EJF Board Member

Rosa Read- EJF Executive Board

Shell Pearce- EJF Board Member