Archaeologists are scrambling to study and preserve artifacts from Jamestown, the first permanent English settlement in North America, and other sites along the East Coast as storms and rising seas erode the settlements of Native Americans and early colonists. "Throughout human history, the water's edge has been an inviting place to settle," Martin Gallivan, a professor of anthropology at the College of William & Mary, told Bay Journal, making structures and artifacts at these early waterfront settlements particularly vulnerable to the next storm. Archaeologists excavating at Jamestown, for example, "now factor in elevation and water levels when considering where to work next on a site that is increasingly inundated with water." Longwood University's Institute of Archaeology has found that 153 of the 313 Virginian archaeological sites it was asked by the state to study are threatened by coastal erosion and rising seas, with 28 of these sites likely to disappear within 50 years.
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