Breaking Bread with the Dead
Abstract: The establishment of two international ad hoc tribunals for Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia, and the creation of an International Criminal Court within the next five years, has increased the need for archaeologists who can assist in the exhumation of individual and mass graves associated with war crimes and genocide throughout the world. This work examines the efforts of teams of archeologists and forensic scientists which have investigated forced disappearances, political killings, and war crimes in Argentina, Guatemala, Iraqi Kurdistan, and the former Yugoslavia since 1984. As more archeologists enter this growing field, it is becoming apparent that their training at the university and post-graduate level needs to be supplemented with courses that will better prepare them for international forensic work. Not only do they need to be trained in forensic methods and procedures, they also need to be knowledgeable of legal and evidenciary procedures and the political and cultural dynamics of the countries where they will be working.
Archaeology and Forensic Death Investigations
Abstract: Historically, the role of the archaeology in forensic death investigation has focused on excavation techniques and documentation of context. Additional skills of the archaeologist relate to familiarity with stratigraphy and soils, collection and conservation of artifacts, and special areas of interest, such as taphonomy. The following discussion surveys the processes by which the methods and personnel of archaeology have been incorporated into forensic recovery of skeletal and buried remains. The current status of the archaeologist's involvement in forensic investigations is explored. As well, distinctions between the work of medical legal death investigators and crime scene investigators are contrasted to archaeologists working conventional archaeological sites. Finally, the utility of archaeological methods and archaeologists is illustrated using examples ranging from a serial murder investigation in the U.S. to international investigations involving human rights abuses in Honduras and war crimes in Rwanda and the former Yugoslavia. The contributions of the archaeologist's skills range from methodologies of excavation and documentation of context to expertise in areas involving soil features, conservation of grave goods, and the uses of taphonomic knowledge to resolve post-mortem issues.
Why the Forensic Anthropologist Needs the Archaeologist
Abstract: Many scientific experts and specialists can be invited to join a forensic anthropology team and are used effectively in cases involving missing persons and buried homicide victims, as well as in locating historic burials. Nevertheless, the most significant addition to a forensic anthropology team is the archaeologist. The archaeologist is often instrumental in solving the puzzle of the burial's location, which can lead to resolving the riddle of the deceased person's identification and cause of death. This specialist's training and experience with various soils and the environmental context surrounding buried or scattered remains makes his services invaluable to the leader of a well-rounded and successful forensic team. This article highlights the importance of archaeological expertise and its use in the forensic investigation.
Bad to the Bone?: Historical Archaeologists in the Practice of Forensic Science
Abstract: Heightened recognition by law enforcement personnel of forensic archaeology provides an expanding array of opportunities for historical archaeologists to apply their skills in situations of medicolegal significance. Yet too few archaeologists are familiar with the protocols of criminalistics, including crime scene processing, chains of custody, and effective court testimony. Also, most archaeologists do not fully realize the health risks associated with handling decomposed human remains and the professional liability exposure inherent to a juridical investigation. As a group, historical archaeologists undoubtedly possess the skills and ethical disposition required of forensic scientists, but those who wish to offer their services as forensic experts must also be prepared to assume the serious responsibilities of doing so. This paper discusses the development of forensic archaeology, the specialized training that qualifies one to participate in a crime scene investigation, methods to reduce health risks and professional liability exposure, and the most effective approaches an historical archaeologist can follow to become certified as a forensic expert.
The Archaeology of Contemporary Mass Graves
Abstract: The excavation of mass graves provides information and documentation for both human rights work and for forensic medico-legal investigations. Medico-legal documentation for the United Nations International Criminal Tribunal for the former Yugoslavia and the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda is a major reason for recent excavation of large mass graves in these countries. The mass grave excavations have been among the largest since World War II. The investigative teams incorporated professional archaeologists sensitized to medico-legal realities, to the realm of decomposed fleshed remains, and who exhibited flexibility in adapting techniques to the forensic context. This paper examines the forensic context of these excavations, the techniques the team developed, and presents a case study from Rwanda.
Looking for a Needle in a Haystack: Developing Closer Relationships between Law Enforcement Specialists and Archaeology
Abstract: In the early evening of 20 July 1993, the body of Deputy White House Counsel Vincent W. Foster, Jr. was found in Fort Marcy Park in Fairfax County, Virginia. The United States Park Police investigated the death and concluded that it was a suicide. Since that time, questions have been raised concerning the circumstances surrounding Mr. Foster's death. Following continued speculation, two separate investigations were conducted by Special Counsel Robert B. Fiske and Independent Counsel Kenneth W. Starr. Each investigation included a search of the area where Mr. Foster's body was found in an attempt to locate the bullet which caused Mr. Foster's death, bone fragments from his skull, gun powder residue, and other evidence relevant to Mr. Foster's death.
Firearms Identification in Support of Identifying a Mass Execution at El Mozote, El Salvador
Abstract: The Civil War in El Salvador was very violent. One particularly violent episode involved the destruction of the village of El Mozote and the killing of hundreds of inhabitants by government troops. Forensic investigation of one building, containing the remains of the village's children, coupled with archaeological application of firearms identification processes demonstrated the victims were executed and not killed as the result of combat action as claimed by the government.
Remote Sensing Applications in Forensic Investigations
Abstract: Forensic investigations concern locating, identifying, collecting, and cataloging physical evidence for the purpose of presenting it in court. One aspect of forensic investigation concerns locating clandestine evidence which is often concealed in the subsurface. This task is typically guided by information provided by informants (pathological liars), witnesses, psychics, and sometimes suspects. Resultant searches may be time consuming and frustrating to understaffed departments. Often such searches lead to excavations that destroy evidence. Any nondestructive method used to reduce the time spent on searches and excavations and to increase the probability of locating physical evidence are of prime interest to the law enforcement community. Remote sensing methods, which are nondestructive, are currently being applied with promising results in forensic investigations. Some of the more promising methods, including infrared, magnetics, electromagnetics, and ground penetrating radar are discussed. Remote sensing methods when properly applied can provide the forensic investigator tremendous savings in time and cost in the search for physical evidence. The forensic investigator must be educated to understand that there is no remote sensing method that will consistently find a body or physical evidence. These methods locate anomalous areas, and the cause of these anomalies will only be fully understood upon examination by others.
Historical Archaeology Adrift?
Abstract: This commentary cites the remarkable progress made in the field of historical archaeology during the time since the founding of The Society for Historical Archaeology in 1967. Despite new sophistication in the technical aspects of the discipline, we have witnessed a perplexing tendency to focus research on unique events and thus have largely abandoned the search for the regularities of cultural practice. It is suggested that if historical archaeology is to achieve its full potential as a discipline, it must develop a methodology which draws from its unique strengths. The opposition of archival and archaeological data sets in the context of scientific inquiry is recommended.
Attaining the Full Potential of Historical Archaeology
Abstract: Historical archaeology is not adrift; rather through the collective contributions of generations of dedicated scholars it has matured into an inclusive discipline that seeks solutions to a wide range of problems regarding past peoples and their cultural expressions. While it is appropriate to seek to understand cultural regularities we must also explore the rich texture of variation expressed in the material patterns left behind. I agree with Charles E. Cleland's that new and rigorous methodologies must develop in order for historical archaeology to reach its potential. We need not constrain our creativity, however, nor the potential of thorough utilization of archival sources, by limiting ourselves to the construction of oppositions between the historical and archaeological record. Rather, our models should embrace an examination, and testing, of questions derived from the intersection of both sources of information. The full engagement of both history and archaeology in the framing of questions will lead to a more complete understanding of the dynamic nature of cultural expressions recoverable through archaeological inquiry.
The Archaeology of a "Destroyed" Site: Surface Survey and Historical Documents at the Civilian Conservation Corps Camp, Bandelier National Monument, New Mexico
Abstract: Archaeological records and historical documents provide complementary data for the understanding of temporary laborers' quarters related to large-scale construction projects. In this work, documents are used to evaluate data from an archaeological surface survey of a large 1930s era work camp of the Civilian Conservation Corps in northern New Mexico. The camp, occupied for seven years, was bulldozed immediately after its occupants left. Despite this drastic step, surface remains are still visible, and the site was recorded in 1990 and 1991 as part of a long-term survey project at Bandelier National Monument. Artifacts, rubble, and altered vegetation patterns constitute the known archaeological remains of the site and form the basis for the identification of activity areas. Historic maps and photographs complement artifact analysis and vegetation studies to illustrate the camp's configurations.
The Transformation of America: Georgian Sensibility, Capitalist Conspiracy, or Consumer Revolution?
Abstract: Over the last three decades, the Colonial Chesapeake has been a particularly dynamic field of archaeological study. In concert with the findings of the "new social history," dramatic social and cultural developments have been documented, and a number of theoretical models have been advanced as explanatory constructs. Three popular models are critically evaluated: the "Georgian" worldview proposed by James Deetz, a theory of merchant capitalism most strongly championed by Mark Leone, and a transplanted "consumer revolution" espoused by Cary Carson and others. While significant points of congruence exist among the models, the consumer revolution concept will be argued as possessing the best potential to provide a solid theoretical basis for future insights. This proposition is based on a synthesis of archaeological and documentary findings, which indicate two broad phases of cultural transformation that appear most plausibly explained as the rise of a consumer society within the context of the American frontier.
Correlates of Contact: Epidemic Disease in Archaeological Context
Abstract: Over the past several decades, historians, geographers, demographers, anthropologists and others interested in the demographic effects of contact between Europeans and Native Americans have emphasized epidemic diseases as a major factor in declining native populations. Little progress, however, has been made toward developing a method and theory for testing hypotheses regarding epidemic diseases and depopulation in the archaeological record. Tatham Mound, an early contact period mortuary locality in Florida serves as a useful example of the difficulties encountered when testing propositions regarding epidemic disease in archaeological context.
Commodity Flow and National Market Access: A Case Study from Interior Alaska
Abstract: This study re-examines the Commodity Flow Model presented by Riordan and Adams (1985) in light of additional work done by other archaeologists working in Illinois, Oregon, and South Carolina. The Commodity Flow Model provides a way for historical archaeologists to evaluate the interactions between manufacturer and consumer, by categorizing the consumer's participation in the national market economy. The model is then tested using early 20th century gold rush sites in interior Alaska. Using both weighted and unweighted samples, this study reaffirms the validity of the model and suggests ways of improving it.
Provenience of Eighteenth-Century British Porcelain Sherds from Sites 3B and 4E, Fortress of Louisbourg, Nova Scotia: Constraints from Mineralogy, Bulk Paste and Glaze Compositions
Abstract: Twenty-six British porcelain sherds excavated from two properties at the Fortress of Louisbourg were analysed by electron microprobe with the objective of identifying the factories from which they originated (that is, their provenience). Nineteen of the samples are phosphatic; seven are magnesian. Sixteen of the phosphatic sherds have paste and glaze compositions consistent with Bow porcelain (ca. 1747 to 1776). This attribution is supported by underglaze blue patterns (Dragon, Cannonball, and Desirable Residence patterns) and famille rose overglaze polychrome designs that match the decoration used on Bow porcelain. A calcic plagioclase-bearing sherd has a composition suggesting derivation from the Gilbody works (Liverpool, ca. 1755 to 1761). Another unassigned sherd has a paste composition that resembles products of the Lowestoft factory (ca. 1757 to 1799), but contains plagioclase, a mineral not known to occur in Lowestoft porcelain, and its glaze contains small amounts of tin, a component unknown in analysed Lowestoft glazes. One highly porous sample has an anomalous composition (a lower phosphate content than any known bone-ash porcelain), and appears to have been chemically modified in the ground. It, too, remains unattributed. The magnesian sherds contain diopside and enstatite, and thus are mineralogically similar to another type of Liverpool porcelain (late Chaffers [ca. 1756 to 1765]) and its successor, the Christian/Seth Pennington works; ca. 1765 to 1799). Compositionally, the body and glaze of these samples resemble Chaffers/Christian/Seth Pennington porcelain. This attribution is further supported by their underglaze blue patterns, which match some of those (Liver Bird pattern) known to have been used at the Liverpool works. Contemporary documents record the fact that the Bow works exported significant amounts of its wares to North America. The discovery of Chaffers/Christian/Seth Pennington porcelain at Louisbourg and other archaeological sites in Atlantic Canada (Fort Beauséjour) indicates that some Liverpool factories also supplied colonial markets with porcelain.
From Tanning to Tea: The Evolution of a Neighborhood
Abstract: This study traces the transformation of an outlying industrial district in lower Manhattan into one of the city 's most densely populated working-class neighborhoods~Five Points. Using census research conducted for the Foley Square/Five Points project, the demographic as well as physical changes are discussed in the context of the district 's reputation as the city 's most notorious 19th-century slum. The evolving spatial organization of one of the excavated lots is used to provide a picture of living conditions and a backdrop for the interpretive studies that fill the rest of the volume.
Prices that Suit the Times: Shopping for Ceramics at The Five Points.
Abstract: Throughout the 19th century, the area east of the Collect Pond was home to the immigrant poor. Primary documents offer one view of the crowded and dilapidated living conditions, which characterized the district known as "Five Points." The ceramic assemblage excavated at t he Foley Square Courthouse site in 1991 sheds a different light on the people and their way of life in New York 's most notorious slum. Sets of Staffordshire tea and tableware, as well as Chinese porcelain, are present in the assemblage. Issues relating to the procurement and availability of seemingly fancy ceramics and their meaning to the mid-century Irish tenants who used them are explained. Meaning is considered in terms of Irish cultural traditions and middle-class Victorian values. The CC index value of the large ceramic assemblage is also compared to CC values for other assemblages from New York City and elsewhere and the implications of the differences are considered.
Prostitutes, a Rabbi, and a Carpenter~Dinner at the Five Points in the 1830s
Abstract: Three deposits from two separate shaft-features on Manhattan 's Block 160 yielded a total of 14,502 bones and bone fragments. Located in the middle of a working-class neighborhood, this block made up one fifth of New York 's notorious Five Points. Analysis of the faunal assemblages, in tandem with the extensive historical record, provides an opportunity to explore working-class diet in a changing urban marketplace. Specific to Five Points, this is an examination of some of the disparate lifestyles present in this infamous neighborhood.
Good for What Ails You: Medicinal Use at Five Points
Abstract: During the 19th century, residents of Five Points, Manhattan, lived in increasingly crowded, unsanitary conditions and often labored at dangerous and debilitating jobs. While wealthier city inhabitants could afford a healthy diet, a physician's care, or a seasonal change of residence, medicine was the solitary option for the less fortunate. This study utilizes a large assemblage of medicinal vessels and archaeobotanical remains to examine the reality of disease in the Sixth Ward, the available choices for treatment, and the preferences of the Five Points population. Comparisons are made with medicinal choices at other 19th-century New York sites and some tentative conclusions are drawn about working-class versus middle-class behavior regarding health.
"Material Culture ":Conservation and Analysis of Textiles Recovered from Five Points
Abstract: The Five Points/Courthouse archaeological project benefited at its inception from the inclusion of conservation. Retrieval techniques facilitated the initial preservation of the many textile fragments in the assemblage and subsequent conservation was used to retrieve the weave structure and other diagnostic elements of the badly degraded materials. The treatments provided a unique opportunity to access information pertaining to one of the most important occupations for the Irish immigrants who lived in the neighborhood. This study describes the environmental conditions that produced the degradation and the techniques used to restore the textiles. In combination with historical research on the garment industry and the reuse of rags, textiles provide insights into working-class clothing, the redefinition of women's roles in the workplace, and the impact of the Industrial Revolution on New York.
"By Virtue of Reason and Nature": Competition and Economic Strategy in the Needletrades at New York 's Five Points,1855-1880
Abstract: During the 19th century, New York City became the largest producer of ready-to-wear clothing in America. This was possible, in part, because of the large labor force created by the influx of thousands of Irish, German, Polish, and Italian immigrants willing to work long hours for low wages in sweatshops and doing piece work in their own homes. Divided along the lines of gender and ethnic identity, men and women, Irish and Polish, competed for every penny they earned. New York 's Five Points neighborhood is known historically for its large population of immigrants who worked in the needletrades. Using the historical and archaeological data collected from the Five Points/Courthouse site, this study examines the sewing trades from the perspective of gender and ethnicity, with attention to differences in industrial and domestic deposits.
"Suckers, Soap-Locks, Irishmen and Plug-Uglies ": Block 160, Municipal Politics and Local Control
Abstract: The Irish immigrants who arrived in the United States and settled in lower Manhattan during the 19th century were poor and powerless, subject to the vagaries of an unfeeling world. Among these immigrants were the residents of Block 160, the site of a new federal courthouse at Foley Square. The Irish were able to gain a measure of power and control over their lives by entering into the political arena. Starting out as outcasts, then as hangers-on, these people gradually gained a voice in how their neighborhood should be run. Politics provided a way for ambitious young men of the neighborhood, who were barred by lack of education or opportunity to get into one of the "learned professions," to make a living, and even become wealthy. This study focuses on the role of local politics~including the power and influence of Tammany Hall~on the lives of the residents of Block 160 during the 19th century. It sketches how the residents were able to access power, and then profit from it.
Negotiating Patriotism at the Five Points: Clay Tobacco Pipes and Patriotic Imagery Among Trade Unionists and Nativists in a Nineteenth-Century New York Neighborhood
Abstract: Nineteenth-century American trade union and nativist rhetoric was rife with allusions to nationalist and patriotic sentiments, and symbols of the Republic were prominently displayed whenever these groups congregated. American trade union heraldry also incorporated these motifs, explicitly linking democratic imagery with group identity. The concepts of identity and ideology bound up with patriotic symbols are contentious by nature, however. Trade unions defined their own republican and patriotic ideals while nativists deployed the same symbols within a very different ideological framework, yet both groups laid claim to a patriotic identity. The process of defining and negotiating the nature of patriotism and American national identity is explored through a hermeneutic approach, using tobacco pipes recovered from New York City 's Five Points/Courthouse site. This study addresses the extent to which the rhetoric and ideology of these groups penetrated the daily lives of individuals, many of whom are otherwise absent from the historical record.
The Rhetoric of Reform: The Five Points Missions and the Cult of Domesticity
Abstract: For 150 years, the Five Points has been depicted as New York's center of vice and debauchery. Recent historical and archaeological investigations conclude that while the area contained abysmal sanitary conditions, poverty, and prostitution, many of the oft-told stories of the Five Points ' depravity are gross exaggerations. This article examines how literature produced by 19th-century missionaries and moral reformers helped create these myths. Throughout these works, the Five Points symbolized the immorality of urban life and was used to show middle-class readers the importance of their own ideology of domesticity. The reformers exaggerated the area 's poverty and stereotyped its inhabitants to illustrate the consequences of not adhering to middle-class principles of respectability and domesticity. By creating a sensational and one-sided image of urban poverty, writers created a stereotype of 19th-century working-class neighborhoods that would survive into the mid-20th century.
Linking Artifact Assemblages to Household Cycles: An Example from the Gibbs Site
Abstract: ABSTRACT In this essay, a new quantitative method called time sequence analysis is introduced. The method is used to link artifact distributions to family cycles, allowing reconstruction of consumption dynamics across several generations. Information for the study was recovered from excavations conducted at the Gibbs site, a 19th-century farm near Knoxville, Tennessee. Four generations of the Gibbs family occupied the site between 1792 and 1913.The relationship between household cycles and material consumption is measured statistically with correlation tests using time sequence analysis. The analysis results indicate that, given optimum excavation and documentary contexts, artifact assemblages can be linked directly to successive household cycles.
French Beads in France and Northeastern North America During the Sixteenth Century
Abstract: Although it is generally recognized that the French played an important role in the bead trade during the early contact period in Northeastern North America,there have been no serious attempts to carry out archival research and to locate reference collections of beads in France;consequently, surprisingly little is known about French beads. North American bead researchers are still asking some very basic questions about the provenience,chronology,and trade of French glass beads. This study seeks to answer these questions by drawing on a combination of written sources and archaeological collections early French travel literature and collections of beads from First Nations contact sites. Information from these relatively well-known sources is supplemented with new data gathered from post-mortem inventories of Parisian bead-makers and from notarized contracts containing descriptions of beads purchased for the North American trade.The study also draws on a unique collection of beads dating from the second half of the 16th century, recently unearthed in the Jardins du Caroussel, near the Louvre Museum in Paris.
Delaware Archaeology and the Revolutionary Eighteenth Century
Abstract: Many theorists see the 18th century as a time of profound change in European America.This paper tests some of these theories with data from 21 different 18th-century archaeological sites in Delaware that have been extensively excavated.The sites date to all parts of the 1680-1830 period, and their occupants span the social range from poor tenants to well-to-do planters.Eighteen of the excavations were sponsored by the Delaware Department of Transportation, and the techniques employed in the excavation and analysis of these sites were quite similar. Comparing the house remains, farm layouts, ceramics, glass, tablewares, clothing-related artifacts, and faunal remains from these sites reveals a complex pattern of developments. Certain parts of the material culture of rural Delaware did experience profound and relatively rapid change, especially ceramics and tablewares. Other aspects of life, however, including housing and meat consumption, changed very little, if at all.The archaeological record does not support the view that the 18th-century saw changes in outlook and thinking that influenced every part of American life.
The Archaeology of Military Politics:The Case of Castle Clinton
Abstract: The West Battery, later renamed Castle Clinton,was constructed off the tip of Manhattan, New York, between 1808 and 1811. Following Paul J. F. Schumacher (1955)and John L. Cotter (1962), William D. Hershey conducted excavations inside the castle for the National Park Service (NPS) reconstruction efforts in 1963 (Hershey 1963). His excavations revealed several discrepancies between the fortifications that were planned and those that were built. These modifications to the original design were never satisfactorily explained. In the early 1960s, the archives of Col. Jonathan Williams, the architect of the West Battery, were discovered, transcribed, and compiled by NPS historian Thomas Pitkin (1963). This paper attempts to reconcile the design changes in the construction of Castle Clinton with the archives of its architect and builder Col. Williams. This reconciliation provides additional information concerning the construction of fortifications in New York Harbor, the flexibility accorded the early engineers, and the politics of the early 19th century military.