Browsing the archives for the Research category

GIS Day and Archaeology in Annapolis

Here in our laboratory, several of us use GIS in our work.  In honor of GIS Day, here’s an introduction to some of the things we do.  Benjamin Skolnik In my work on historic plantation landscapes, GIS has been instrumental to mapping and visualizing the past.  Digitizing and georeferencing historic maps and orthorectifying historic photographs […]

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“Knowledge Quite Worth Possessing”

One of our best glimpses into enslaved life at Wye House and at similar plantations across Maryland and the south comes from Frederick Douglass, the abolitionist who was enslaved at Wye House for several years. In each of his autobiographies, he opens with a description of slave life on the plantation.  Our use of Douglass […]

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Using Historical Documents to Find Individuals from the Past

A question recently arose concerning the 1858 Dilworth map and what kind of information it can tell us. An individual commented on our last post, inquiring about what kinds of people are labeled on the map and what types of landmarks it shows. This is quite an interesting question, so this post is dedicated to […]

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Emerging Scholars Research Project

Though field school is over, archaeological discovery continues. I previously worked on the James Holliday house in Annapolis, the Wye House Plantation, and the Buffalo Soldier’s house in Easton. On those sites, we dug, sweated, found great artifacts, and pieced together forgotten stories from the past. Now, in the air-conditioned lab, our goal is slightly […]

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Working with Historic Maps

One of the most important strengths of historical archaeology is our ability and willingness to combine anthropology, dirt, and the historical record.  Using documents to aid archaeological research is one of the defining characteristics of the discipline.  These come in many forms–including, but certainly not limited to, deeds, journals, diaries, letters, probate inventories, wills, church […]

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The Importance of Names

To build on the discussion of my last post on community engagement, it has been a goal of Archaeology in Annapolis to keep our research relevant to the present. The past is not dead, forgotten, and faceless. At the Wye House plantation, we have multiple historical documents that describe the lives of the Lloyd family–writings by […]

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“Here was a field for industry and enterprise, strongly inviting”

The following was presented at the Society for Historical Archaeology 2012 conference in Baltimore, as part of the symposium People Who Lived With Glass Houses: The Archaeology of Gardens and Scientific Agriculture in Early America. “Here was a field for industry and enterprise, strongly inviting:” using GIS to identify scientific gardening and agriculture on plantation […]

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