Talk

Two Family Plantations on the Frontier: Excavations at Shaw’s Folly and Sparrow’s Rest

Learn about the Smithsonian's Environmental Archaeology Lab

Saturday, Mar 23, 2024 - 11:00am - 12:00pm
Event Location
Schmidt Conference Center on SERC's campus in Edgewater, Maryland

Event Details

Left mandible of a cow, oyster shells, and the rim of a Northern Italian ceramic vessel, in a trash deposit, partially covered with dirt.
Photograph depicts left mandible of a cow, oyster shells, and the rim of a Northern Italian ceramic vessel, all in a trash deposit dating to the 1660s or 1670s.

Smithsonian’s Environmental Archaeology Laboratory (SEAL) continues excavations and analyses of finds at two 1660s plantation sites on the SERC campus. This illustrated talk summarizes what we did and what we found. Exotic pottery, personalized spoons, tobacco pipes bearing the manufacturers’ initials, animal bones from innumerable meals…these things and more. After the presentation we hope you’ll visit the exhibit where you’ll see some of these objects up close.

Speaker: Jim Gibb, Smithsonian Environmental Archaeology Laboratory (SEAL)

Advanced registration is encouraged.

What to expect?

As a part of the Maryland Day celebrations March 22 - 24, Jim Gibb will give an hour long illustrated presentation highlighting what his team has done and continues to do on SERC's campus.

Jim is the head archaeologist of the Smithsonian Environmental Archaeology Lab (SEAL). SEAL has done incredible work excavating and analysing finds at two 1660s plantation sites on SERC's campus, including pottery, personalized spoons, tobacco pipes bearing the manufacturers’ initials, animal bones from innumerable meals and more.

After the presentation we hope you’ll visit the Woodlawn House exhibit where you’ll see some of these objects up close!

Who is this event for?

Anyone 12 years and older is welcome to attend! Whether you are passionate about archaeology or just looking to learn something new, we invite you to join us!

Finding Us

The presentation will be at the Schmidt Conference Center, which is located next to the Green Village housing and a short walk from the Mathias Laboratory.

  • Here are directions to SERC and here is a campus map.
  • Please check to be sure that your GPS directions align with the directions in the link. Some programs will bring you in through our back gate (off of Collins Road), which requires a key card to access.
  • When you arrive, you'll pass a security kiosk. Please slow down and stop to let them know you are here for the Archaeology presentation at Schmidt.
  • After passing the security kiosk, drive about 3/4 of a mile until you come to a stop sign and then turn right.
  • There will be parking on your left and right, some paved some not.  
  • There are two van-accessible parking spaces on the right side of the parking lot.
  • Once parked, look for the "Schmidt Center" sign on the grass and head up the paved slope road.

Important Notes

  • The room will be set up to accommodate 50 people.
  • There are two gendered bathrooms with multiple stalls, including an accessible stall.
  • If you have any questions about this event, have any accessibility needs, or have any other thoughts, please reach out to Rachael Mady (MadyR@si.edu, 443-482-2276).