NASA to fly historic Jamestown artifact, mementos on space shuttle

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NORFOLK, Va. -- A cargo tag that traveled 3,000 miles from England to America's first permanent English settlement nearly four centuries ago is about to take a much longer journey: [about 4 million miles] into space.

The tag will fly aboard the space shuttle Atlantis, scheduled for launch March 15, NASA announced Wednesday. After the mission, NASA will return the tag to Historic Jamestowne for display in its new archaeological museum.

The voyage honors one of the first phases of American exploration, the founding of Jamestown in May 1607. An 18-month series of activities to commemorate the colony's 400th anniversary is under way...

Researchers found the tag at the bottom of a well during an archaeological dig last summer...The rectangular tag made of lead is inscribed "YAMES" and beneath that "TOWNE"...

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