Preliminary Research Ideas

1. The Hispanic immigrant communities of Williamsburg — I remember reading an article about these communities in Williamsburg in either the Virginia Gazette or the Daily Press within the past year, and I found it really interesting. What attracted these people to Williamsburg? Did anything push them here? What do they like or dislike about this town? Why do they stay?
2. The development of High Street — High Street has a bunch of successful businesses, but also a bunch of vacant retail space, an unused parking deck, and a bunch of empty housing lots. What went wrong, why, what are people doing about it now?
3. Off-campus “brothel” rule — I know it has to do with the College, but I was going to research the roots about the no-more-than-4-unrelated-people to an off-campus house rule, residents’ and students’ opinions on it, and how it’s been changed recently (I think I remember something about that).
4. Foreign workers at Busch Gardens — When I went to Busch Gardens when I was much younger, I remember there were a bunch of foreign student workers there, probably to increase the “European”-ness of the park. Why do these students come to Williamsburg and work at Busch Gardens? What is the work like? What kind of connections do they form to the park, their co-workers, the city?


The Williamsburg Documentary Project (WDP) strives to collect and preserve the rich past of Williamsburg, Virginia. By conducting oral history interviews, building physical and digital archives, and creating online exhibits, the WDP interprets Williamsburg’s recent past. The WDP works towards developing a better understanding of Williamsburg by bringing together individuals, local groups, Colonial Williamsburg, and the College of William & Mary.

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