Encyclopedia Virginia: Archaeology http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/img/EV_Logo_sm.gif Encyclopedia Virginia This is the url http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org The first and ultimate online reference work about the Commonwealth /Jefferson_s_Mound_Archaeological_Site Tue, 22 Nov 2016 17:01:47 EST Jefferson's Mound Archaeological Site http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Jefferson_s_Mound_Archaeological_Site Tue, 22 Nov 2016 17:01:47 EST]]> /Menokin Mon, 21 Nov 2016 14:08:24 EST <![CDATA[Menokin]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Menokin Menokin, located in Richmond County, was the home of Francis Lightfoot Lee and his wife, Rebecca Tayloe Lee. Constructed from 1769 to 1771, the home sat on a 1,000-acre plantation and was a wedding gift from Rebecca Lee's father, John Tayloe II. The designer is unknown but may have been the English craftsman William Buckland, who also worked on George Mason's Gunston Hall. The Lees lived at Menokin on and off until their deaths in 1797, and two years later the house was inherited by John Tayloe III, who owned it until 1823. The property changed hands a number of times before falling into disrepair and being abandoned by the mid-twentieth century. In the 1960s, the Omohundro family, which inherited Menokin in 1935, removed the interior paneling and woodwork to protect it from damage; in 1995, T. Edgar Omohundro deeded the property to the Menokin Foundation. Beginning in 1985, archaeological investigations evaluated the site and dated its occupation back to the Rappahannock Indians, who lived and hunted there prior to the arrival of the English. In the early twenty-first century, the Menokin Foundation opened a visitors center and began plans to preserve the site by replacing the missing walls and roof with glass and steel.
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/Paleoindian_Period Wed, 05 Oct 2016 12:04:45 EST <![CDATA[Paleoindian Period (16,000–8000 BC)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Paleoindian_Period The Paleoindian Period (16,000–8000 BC) came toward the end of the Ice Age, a time when the climate warmed and the largest mammals became extinct. Likely having originally migrated from Asia, the first people in Virginia were hunter-gatherers who left behind lithic, or stone, tools, often spearheads. At the Cactus Hill Archaeological Site in Sussex County, these date back to 16,000 BC, or well before the better-known Clovis culture. The so-called Paleoamericans likely banded together in groups of thirty to fifty and located themselves near high-quality stone resources, especially in Dinwiddie and Mecklenburg counties. While keeping a base camp, they may have established smaller settlements for more specialized tasks such as tool-making and hunting. The bands probably lacked central leadership, moved often, and traded with one another. Based on the religious practices of the later Virginia Indians, they likely were animists, investing various natural forces with spiritual power.
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/Cactus_Hill_Archaeological_Site Wed, 05 Oct 2016 12:02:19 EST <![CDATA[Cactus Hill Archaeological Site]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Cactus_Hill_Archaeological_Site Wed, 05 Oct 2016 12:02:19 EST]]> /Slave_Housing_in_Virginia Tue, 20 Sep 2016 13:15:07 EST <![CDATA[Slave Housing in Virginia]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Slave_Housing_in_Virginia Slave housing in Virginia varied widely depending on the context: whether it was rural or urban, whether it was on an elite plantation or a small farm, and even whether it was located close to or far from the slaveholder's main house. Many of the first Africans who came to Virginia lived in barracks-style housing and other, less-than-permanent accommodations. As the enslaved population grew, however, houses were designed and constructed specifically for black laborers and, in particular, those living in family units. Most slave quarters were constructed of wood, and many were log and earthfast structures with no foundations. Those located closest to elite plantation houses were generally better built, with wooden frames and masonry chimneys and foundations. Separate one or two-room structures, designed to accommodate one- or two-family units, were the most popular house type, although many enslaved laborers slept where they worked—in kitchens, laundries, and stables. Slaves who were hired out in cities sometimes resided in separate "shanty towns." Few intact slave quarters exist in the twenty-first century—likely fewer than 300—and most of those are relatively large and well-built.
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/Crab_Orchard_Archaeological_Site Tue, 26 Jul 2016 16:02:46 EST <![CDATA[Crab Orchard Archaeological Site]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Crab_Orchard_Archaeological_Site Tue, 26 Jul 2016 16:02:46 EST]]> /Lumpkin_s_Jail Thu, 26 May 2016 22:36:09 EST <![CDATA[Lumpkin's Jail]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Lumpkin_s_Jail Lumpkin's Jail was a slave-trading complex located on Wall Street, in the Shockoe Bottom district of Richmond, which operated from the 1830s until the end of the American Civil War (1861–1865). The slave-trader Bacon Tait owned the property first, followed by Lewis A. Collier, who built the so-called jail, which confined enslaved African Americans prior to their sale. Robert Lumpkin purchased the property in 1844 and used the facility to pursue his own slave-trading business, accommodating his clients in a boardinghouse on the premises. Lumpkin also charged slave dealers and owners a daily fee for holding their slaves. Anthony Burns, a runaway slave returned to Richmond under the Fugitive Slave Law, was housed at Lumpkin's for four months under appalling conditions. Lumpkin died in 1866, and his widow, a formerly enslaved woman named Mary, leased the property to a Baptist minister who founded the Colver Institute, a religious school for emancipated African Americans, and held classes in the former jail building. The school eventually became Virginia Union University. The jail was demolished by 1876 and large industrial buildings later occupied the site. Its history was largely forgotten until 2005, when archaeologists began the first phase of an investigation that eventually found evidence of the complex, including the original jail building buried nearly fifteen feet beneath the modern ground level. The archaeological remains were subsequently reburied, and the Lumpkin's Jail site is commemorated as one of seventeen places on the Richmond Slave Trail.
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/Archaeology_at_Mount_Vernon Fri, 01 Apr 2016 08:27:02 EST <![CDATA[Mount Vernon, Archaeology at]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Archaeology_at_Mount_Vernon Archaeology at Mount Vernon, the Fairfax County plantation home of George Washington, began in the 1930s and has continued over the subsequent decades. As part of research and renovation efforts undertaken by the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association, excavations have sought to uncover evidence of daily life on the property during the eighteenth century. In 1987, the association, which has owned and operated the estate since 1860, hired a full-time archaeologist. Since then, archaeological digs at the Mansion House Farm have taken place at the main slave quarter, known as the House for Families, and the blacksmith shop (1987–1990), the fruit garden and nursery (1988–1991), the South Grove trash dump, or midden (1990–1993), the dung repository (1992–1994), and the Upper Garden (2005–2010). Extensive work has also been conducted at the distillery, located near the outlying gristmill (1999–2005). These investigations have turned up a rich array of artifacts and other kinds of evidence attesting to the lives of the Washington family and their enslaved laborers, including the size and nature of structures in which they lived and worked, the tools they manufactured and used, and the foods they ate.
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/Ely_Mound_Archaeological_Site Mon, 22 Feb 2016 13:50:05 EST <![CDATA[Ely Mound Archaeological Site]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Ely_Mound_Archaeological_Site Mon, 22 Feb 2016 13:50:05 EST]]> /Indians_in_Virginia Mon, 23 Nov 2015 11:36:25 EST <![CDATA[Indians in Virginia]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Indians_in_Virginia Indians have lived in the area now known as Virginia for thousands of years. Their histories, ancestral connections, and traditions are intertwined with the 6,000 square miles of Tidewater land the Algonquian-speaking Indians of Virginia called Tsenacomoco. The early inhabitants of Virginia were hunter-gatherers who followed the migratory patterns of animals. Over time, and as the region warmed, they settled into towns along riverbanks and outlined their homelands, developing intimate, balanced relationships with the animals, plants, and geographic formations. They hunted, fished, and farmed, and developed complex social and religious systems and vast trade networks. By the early 1600s, Virginia Indians lived in three broad cultural groups based on the language families found in the area: Algonquian, Iroquoian, and Siouan. Scholars know most about the Algonquian-speaking Indians of Tsenacomoco, who eventually grouped together into a paramount chiefdom. Led by Powhatan, the polity ultimately included twenty-eight to thirty-two small chiefdoms and tribes, stretching from the James to the Potomac rivers and encompassing much of Virginia's coastal plain. In 1607, Englishmen arrived and changed Indian life forever. In the midst of a severe drought, the colonists' demands for food and their inability to fully understand Indian cultural practices led in part to three protracted and violent conflicts over four decades, ending in 1646 with the Algonquian-speaking Indians largely subject to English rule. The General Assembly set aside land for the former tribes of Tsenacomoco, although in subsequent years some Indians were forced to move and some groups became dispersed. In the years that followed, they contributed to the developing American culture while working to maintain their own traditions during difficult periods of disease, hunger, forced relocations, and restrictive colonial and later statewide policies that curtailed their rights to travel unmolested through lands now occupied by settlers, to visit their traditional hunting and fishing grounds, and to testify in court on their own behalf. At the beginning of the twentieth century, a cultural renaissance bloomed and some scholars began to study Indian history more closely. At the same time, the General Assembly did much to deny Indian identity, including passing in 1924 the Act to Preserve Racial Integrity, which criminalized interracial marriage and separated Virginians into two simplified racial categories: white and colored. These wrongs were addressed in part by the Supreme Court's decision in Loving v. Virginia (1967) and by state legislation in the late 1980s that allowed Virginia Indians to change the racial designation on their birth certificates without cost. Virginia Indians in the twenty-first century actively cultivate their own culture while educating others about their history.
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/Paint_Lick_Mountain_Pictograph_Archaeological_Site Fri, 30 May 2014 14:18:39 EST <![CDATA[Paint Lick Mountain Pictograph Archaeological Site]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Paint_Lick_Mountain_Pictograph_Archaeological_Site Fri, 30 May 2014 14:18:39 EST]]> /Late_Woodland_Period_AD_900-1650 Fri, 30 May 2014 14:06:23 EST <![CDATA[Late Woodland Period (AD 900–1650)]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Late_Woodland_Period_AD_900-1650 Fri, 30 May 2014 14:06:23 EST]]> /Houses_in_Early_Virginia_Indian_Society Fri, 30 May 2014 13:51:51 EST <![CDATA[Houses in Early Virginia Indian Society]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Houses_in_Early_Virginia_Indian_Society Houses in early Virginia Indian society became necessary after the Ice Age, when the Indians began depending less on the hunt for survival. Among the Powhatan Indians, especially, but elsewhere in the region, too, a house, or a yi-hakan in Algonquian, typically had a circular or oval floor plan and was rarely if ever longer than forty feet. (The Powhatans designed special houses for their weroances, or chiefs, and their kwiocosuk, or shamans.) Built by women, Indian houses consisted of long, bent sapling poles that were covered with either woven-reed mats or bark. They had a single door, which also served as the only source of light and ventilation. Construction was labor-intensive and time-consuming, and Englishmen, who often were hosted by the Powhatans, complained that they were dark, smoky, and flea-infested. Within a hundred years of the landing at Jamestown, the Indians had begun to adopt English-style houses, but adapted them to native methods and materials (building, for instance, bark-covered cabins). After another hundred years, Indian houses had become largely indistinguishable from those built by non-Indians.
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/Early_Archaic_Period Fri, 30 May 2014 13:32:31 EST <![CDATA[Early Archaic Period]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Early_Archaic_Period Fri, 30 May 2014 13:32:31 EST]]> /Ceramics_Virginia_Indian Fri, 30 May 2014 13:04:17 EST <![CDATA[Ceramics, Virginia Indian]]> http://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Ceramics_Virginia_Indian Fri, 30 May 2014 13:04:17 EST]]>