Rebecca Suerdieck is a 17th c English Historian and Educator based in Williamsburg, Virginia. She is sought out by Museums, Historic Sites, and Adult Enrichment Programs to provide talks and tours on Early Life at Jamestown, the Bermuda-Virginia connection, and the Wreck of the Sea Venture and Shakespeare's Tempest. She also demonstrates domestic skills and hosts workshops on Hearth Cooking, Garden Distilling and Perfume Making.
Rebecca grew up near Williamsburg, Virginia. Much of her Youth was spent as a Volunteer for Colonial Williamsburg.
Her fondest memories were watching the Paper-Makers and Printers, exploring the Palace Maze, learning to cook over a fire,
and participating in Archaeology Digs with Ivor Noel Hume. These experiences taught her the importance of interpreting Virginia History in authentic and interesting ways.
She graduated with a B.A. in Education and Communication, and a Minor in Medieval & Renaissance Studies. She delved into Studies of Medieval and Ecclesiastical Latin, Early Music, the Medieval Church, English Folklore, and Domestic History. Her College Summers were spent completing Internships at the Library Of Congress, Smithsonian Institution, and the Colonial Williamsburg Archives.
After completing her Master's Degree in Library Science, she served as a Manuscripts and Genealogy Materials Cataloger for the Newport News Virginiana Collection and the Rare Books Cataloger for the College of William & Mary Swem Library Special Collections.
Rebecca Suerdieck with James Billington,
Librarian of Congress , 2006.
Rebecca is a second generation Colonial Williamsburg Employee, with 20 years of service in the Historic Area.
Her duties have included cooking on an open fire, spinning and weaving, use of natural dyes, tobacco growing, basket making, perfume making, paper making, book binding and more. She is currently part of the Team that instructs School Teachers from around the Country with programs on Colonial Virginia history. And she has also written and performed original programs about the Restoration of Williamsburg based on archival materials, historic images, and oral histories.
In 1998 she fell in love with Historic Jamestowne. The moment she first saw Jamestown Church as an Adult, her life changed forever! She was married there on May 1, 1999 - and began serving as a Church Guide in the Memorial Church on May 23, 1999.
She has written many programs for Jamestown, including one of the first Archaeology Tours.
In 2006 she went back to School and completed studies in Archaeology. She was part of an Archaeology Field School that excavated a Church and Glebe Site in York County, Virginia.
Her Research and Documentary Photographs have been published, raising awareness of her Research, Mapping and Preservation efforts of 17th c Church Sites in Tidewater, Virginia.
Her research, development, and interpretation of Marye Bucke has always been completely independent and totally self-funded. She makes all of her costuming by hand, based on English garments from 1590-1620. She continually studies Early Modern English and "OP" (Original Pronunciation) and uses it improvisationally while in character.
Rebecca Suerdieck continues to be in demand and receives many accolades
for Research and Interpretation by the College of William &Mary,
Colonial Williamsburg and the National Park Service.
She proudly serves as one of the only freelance
17th Century English Women in the World.
Her Interpretation of Marye Bucke began in 2007,
after three years of Preparation. Her Research has included
a Trip to England in 2007 and to Bermuda in 2011.
Rebecca Suerdieck at the site of the Landing of Sea Venture Survivors,
St. Catherine's Beach, Gates His Bay, Bermuda, 2011.
She regularly self-initiates many projects based on primary sources and artifacts; including the making of salt from sea water, recreating a ceramic cheese mold excavated inside James Fort and demonstrating the making of goat's milk cheese over an open fire.
* Living Historian
* Trained Archaeologist
* Domestic Historian
* Rare Books Librarian