LAKE GEORGE, N.Y. (AP) — Archaeologists are excavating an 18th-century battleground that was the site of a desperate stand by Colonial American troops, the flashpoint of a massacre and the location of the era’s largest smallpox hospital.
The site’s multilayered history poses unique challenges for the dig, which is being conducted in a state-owned park that has served as a natural time capsule amid the summertime bustle in this popular southern Adirondack tourist destination.
"It’s a confusing and complicated site," said David Starbuck, the archaeologist who’s leading the project during the State University of New York at Adirondack’s annual six-week archaeology field school. Read more.
The secrets of the deep will be uncovered when archaeologists excavate a significant colonial shipwreck in Victoria’s Port Phillip Bay later this month.
Leading Monash University archaeologist Adjunct Senior Research Fellow Dr Mark Staniforth from the School of Geography and Environmental Science and a 60-person team will examine the excavation, reburial and preservation of the Clarence, a historically significant colonial wooden trading vessel wrecked off Portarlington in 1850.
Dr. Staniforth, a specialist in Australian colonial shipbuilding and maritime archaeological excavation and one of three chief investigators on the three-year Australian Historic Shipwreck Preservation Project (AHSPP) said Australian wooden shipwrecks had huge potential to tell us about historic connections, technological innovation and daily life in colonial Australia. Read more.
For eight weeks this summer, three archaeologists and a team of volunteers dug through several feet of dirt next to Dills Tavern in Dillsburg searching for the foundation of Matthew Dill’s original tavern that stood on the site as early as 1750.
They didn’t find it, but their work turned up between 35,000 to 40,000 objects, many dating back to the Colonial days.
Among their finds were 21 British copper coins, two Spanish silver coins, a religious medal, many pieces of pottery, plaster, pieces of window glass and iron nails. The artifacts are being catalogued by archaeologist Steve Warfel, who was in charge of the excavation.
He said after all the items are placed in a database he can look for a pattern to see if there is any change in the way an area of the site was being used. Read more.
TRENTON — Richard Hunter, a Trenton-based archaeologist, joined the Trenton Historical Society and Trenton Museum Society at the Ellarslie Mansion in Cadwalader Park yesterday to discuss the importance of preserving the archeological site of Petty’s Run.
“This is a site of national significance as a colonial, industrial, archaeological property,” Hunter said. “It also has a broader regional significance.”
In the Colonial era, Petty’s Run, a natural stream, flowed through downtown Trenton between the Statehouse and the Old Barracks to the Delaware River. Over time, the stream was channelized and subsequently covered and buried. Petty’s Run remained out of sight and out of mind until the late 20th century.
When crews began preparations to expand the Thomas Edison State College campus in 1996, they discovered something monumental. Read more.
Norwich - A research project to study dozens of Colonial and early 19th century gravestones in the cellar of Christ Episcopal Church halted abruptly earlier this month when historian David Oat spotted what he thought could be a human finger bone in the dirt near a pile of gravestones.
Church history says the gravestones were removed from the old cemetery, and the bodies of church founders and their descendents placed in a mass grave at the side of what was to be the new church built in 1846 on lower Washington Street.
The gravestones were placed in the foundation basement of the new church and remained there, in stacks and piles, partially covered by loose dirt, some broken, others in beautiful condition for the past 1½ centuries. Oat started his research project in June to document the stones and match them with church written records.
Oat immediately stopped work when he saw the small bone and called state Archaeologist Nicholas Bellantoni to determine if he was indeed working atop a portion of the former churchyard cemetery. Read more.
In the late 1700s, the heart of Colonial Kempsville was what is now the intersection of Princess Anne, Kempsville and Witchduck roads.
Back then, Kempsville was referred to as Kempe’s Landing and was a thriving river port town bustling with trade along the eastern branch of the Elizabeth River. That expansive waterway - now a much smaller creek - was the site of a recent archaeological dig conducted by area archaeologists including Nick Luccketti.
A few weeks ago, Luccketti spent a week digging up three areas located within the Historic Kempsville District hoping to find artifacts hinting at the former Colonial river port’s early days.
"The idea was to see if they had any evidence of Colonial Kempsville," Luccketti said. Read more.