Topic ID #39124 - posted 1/20/2018 4:17 AM

Excavating Slave Quarters at James Madison's Montpelier, Virginia

Montpelier Archaeology

From April-October of 2018, we will be excavating domestic and work sites in the South Yard of the Montpelier Mansion, where the enslaved laborers of James and Dolley Madison worked and lived during the first half of the 19th century.  This project is part of a larger effort to interpret and reconstruct the South Yard slave quarter so visitors can learn more about the African American heritage and contributions to the United States.

The LEARN Archaeology Expedition program has been operating at Montpelier for a decade-and-a-half, with over 1000 people coming through our week-long programs. All of the scheduled programs are designed to give participants actual excavation experience on an archaeological site working side-by-side with trained professional archaeologists. We have a staff of 12 archaeologists who work with participants both in the lab and in the field, which means you have personal interaction with archaeological staff and this allows you to work on sensitive features, artifacts, and deposits that normally one would not get to handle. You are treated as a member of the research team and we step you through the entire excavation process. While you are here at Montpelier, you will be engaged in lectures, take tours of various archaeological sites on the property, and of course get a tour of the mansion. For schedule and additional information see the following link.


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