Sunday, November 29, 2009


Greetings all...I hope our readers have had a delightful holiday weekend. I apologize for the lack of a posting yesterday...the crew scattered for the weekend and Scott and I were conducting an archaeological survey for an unrelated project.

This being something of an anniversary edition blog...our 800th...and this November being the third year of my involvement in Port Tobacco, I thought I would summarize the PTAP team's accomplishments:
  1. Close-interval shovel testing and detailed mapping of the entire core of the village, resulting in accurate and precise inventory of archaeological sites in town.
  2. Thorough surface collection of the three cultivated fields between Port Tobacco and Warehouse Point, resulting in the accurate and precise mapping of a dozen 18th-century domestic sites and early prehistoric aboriginal sites.
  3. Test excavations at several loci in town, resulting in the identification of portions of the Wade House, the 1860 jail, the Swann House, and several 18th-century house sites that we have not yet associated with specific households.
  4. Exploration of a Contact period site represented by European trade items and aboriginal pottery and projectile points.
  5. Investigation and mapping of a Union encampment just outside of the town.
  6. Development of large databases that include land title, census, and newspaper data.
  7. Processing and cataloguing of 128,249 artifacts representing cultural periods from early prehistory through the early 20th century.
  8. Production of detailed technical reports upon the conclusion of each major field effort, most of which can be downloaded from the website of the Society for the Restoration of Port Tobacco ( A report on this spring's Archeological Society of Maryland field session is nearly complete and also will be made available from the Society's website.
  9. A group of people who are immensely proud of their efforts and the results of those efforts.
Of course, there is a great deal of work left undone. In terms of excavation and analysis, we have only scratched the surface. As long as property owners continue to grant us access to their land, and as long as volunteers continue to aid the effort, we will continue to explore what may be the best preserved Colonial town site in Maryland.


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