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Updates from Colonial Williamsburg's Archaeology Department

May 21, 2015

Name That Archaeological Site!

Round One of “Name that Archaeological Site” was so much fun that we’ve decided to launch a second round for Throwback Thursday! Below are images of four archaeological excavations within Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area. See if you can identify the site.  We’ll begin with an easy one……


Does this look familiar?


And now that you’re warmed up, can … Continue Reading »

May 11, 2015

Before the Tavern …

These two substantial postholes are part of an “earthfast” building that pre-dates Wetherburn’s Tavern.

Two weeks ago we profiled our recent investigation of a Revolutionary War era porch across the front of Wetherburn’s Tavern, and hinted at another important discovery made during our fieldwork. We are now ready for the big reveal….wait for it….a … Continue Reading »

April 21, 2015

Wetherburn’s Tavern Porch

Among the signs of spring in the Historic Area is the return of archaeologists to the field. Beginning in March, visitors may have noticed a small excavation along Duke of Gloucester Street in front of Wetherburn’s Tavern. Want to know why archaeologists picked that spot, and what they found? Read on:

Recent excavation … Continue Reading »

April 9, 2015

Name that Archaeological Site!

For this (Throwback) Thursday, an archaeological game: Below are images of three sites that were excavated within Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area. Two of the images include landmarks that should help identify the location. The third image is of an “iconic” discovery. Care to try your luck guessing the sites? And for any over-achievers out there, try naming the decade. … Continue Reading »

February 13, 2015

What’s in a Name?

The reconstructed Armoury Tin Shop, 2012.

In 1932 Colonial Williamsburg architects uncovered the brick foundations of a 16 by 24-foot building on colonial lot 17, next door to James Anderson’s

Figure 1. 1932 archaeology of the “tin shop”.

Publick Armoury (Figure 1). A reference made to this building in an early 19th century will … Continue Reading »

January 30, 2015


Detail of a 1928 aerial photograph showing Nicholson Street (upper left to lower right) at Botetourt.

When we talk about history at Colonial Williamsburg, it’s the 18th century that comes first to mind. While the 18th century is certainly our research and interpretive focus, archaeologists spend a great deal of time (literally) sifting and … Continue Reading »