Saturday, April 19, 2014

Archaeology in Patterson Park: first Saturday

We started digging in Patterson Park on Tuesday, but today was the first day I managed to get out to the site. It was a gorgeous day, and everything is going great. Above, Jason, the field director, delivers his orientation speech to the morning volunteers.

To back up a bit: besides the fortification ditch, which I already mentioned, our GPR guy found something else in his data: a building foundation that corresponds with a structure shown on one of our Civil War maps. We think this was the butcher's shop that gave Butchers Hill its name, and that served as the headquarters of this part of the defenses in 1814.

So when we set up our initial excavation units we placed them in three places: along the ditch north of the bastion, along the ditch south of the bastion, and over the butcher's shop. This is the trench south of the bastion, where we can already see the ditch clearly. The Pagoda was built right in the middle of the bastion, probably right over the 1814 magazine. You can see that we put the volunteers right to work.

Emily, one of the professionals from our regular crew, exposes a piece of blue and gray stoneware in the ditch fill.

Eli from Baltimore Heritage (our client) leads a tour by the trench across the butcher's shop.

The trench north of the pagoda, where we have yet to find anything that looks like a fortification ditch. Probably need to dig deeper.

Clara helps volunteers screen.

It got pretty crowded around the butcher's shop trench right before lunch.

Ben and Clara by the duck pond. All in all, it was a great day.

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