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June 4, 2010

See archaeologists excavate Anderson’s armoury

Watch archaeology in action this summer during “Archaeologists At Work.” Archaeology staff members will excavate portions of the James Anderson site to search for underground evidence related to Anderson’s expansion of his blacksmithing operation into a high production armoury during the American Revolution.

The excavation is prelude to the planned reconstruction of Anderson’s Blacksmith Shop and Public Armoury. James Anderson was appointed Public Armourer in 1776 by the General Assembly of the newly independent Commonwealth of Virginia. In the wake of his appointment, Anderson began to enlarge his small, commercial blacksmithing operation into an extensive and diverse public manufactory.

Learn more about the reconstruction of Anderson’s Blacksmith Shop and Public Armoury.

Several archaeological studies of the site from 1974 through 2001 explored areas around the blacksmithing forges and strongly suggest that tinsmiths were working on the site. This year’s dig will concentrate on two areas: the kitchen area east of the current blacksmiths’ shop and a section of an 18th-century ravine along the shop’s border.

“Archaeologists At Work” is presented continuously 9 a.m. to noon and 1:15 to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, June 14 through August 13, weather permitting. Admission is by Colonial Williamsburg ticket or Good Neighbor Pass.

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