Current Perspectives on Plantation Archaeology in the Caribbean

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  • Documents (10)

  • Ceramic Production on Barbados Plantations: Seasonality Explored (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Dwayne Scheid.

    The fragments of unglazed red earthenware vessels used in the production of sugar and  identified as ceramic sugarwares, were frequently used by plantations for processing and curing sugar and collecting molasses, and were a common sight on Barbadian plantations from the seventeenth into the late nineteenth centuries.  The local production of these wares occurred in potteries operated by plantations along the east coast of Barbados. Planters managed these potteries while the workers themselves...

  • The Enslaved Laborer Settlement at Trents Plantation, Barbados: 1640s-1834 (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Douglas Armstrong.

    Trents Plantation, Barbados has provided a wealth of new information on early plantation life in Barbados.  In 2013 I reported on the recovery of the early settlement at Trents Plantation and briefly mentioned the identification of an enslaved laborer settlement on the plantation.  This paper focuses on findings related to the enslaved laborer community that was established on the property beginning in the late 1640s.  The site was occupied trough the period of slavery and abandoned upon...

  • Environmental Change and Capitalism: Profit and Exploitation of the Natural World in Colonial Context (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Marco Meniketti.

    The emergence of capitalism was a driving force in colonial Caribbean development.  The institutionalization of slavery, which sustained the economy was but one manifestation of the phenomenon. Environmental exploitation and degradation was another. The Caribbean is a patchwork of non-native plants, damaged ecosystems, transplanted cultures, syncretic identities, and subaltern economic systems, all of which are a legacy of policies that co-evolved with the emergence of mature capitalism as an...

  • Estate Bellevue: Archaeology of an Eighteenth Century Cotton Estate, St. Jan, Danish West Indies (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Alan Armstrong.

    This study examines cotton in the Caribbean through the examination of Estate Bellevue.  This site was an eighteenth century cotton plantation on St. Jan (St. John) in the former Danish West Indies.  It examines a well preserved cotton plantation for which the ruins of the small mansion house, outbuildings, cotton magazine/storehouse, cotton ginning platform, agricultural terraces, and platforms of enslaved laborer houses all survive.  Key elements of the site remain intact and artifacts...

  • The House-Yard Revisited: Domestic Landscapes of Enslaved People in Plantation Jamaica (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Hayden F. Bassett.

    Across the sugar-producing islands of the Caribbean, the "slave village" has remained both a significant object and context for archaeological study of plantation slavery. Recent landscape perspectives have fostered new methods for seeing the material lives of enslaved people at the household and community scales. In recent years, however, little attention has been given the household infrastructure that extended beyond the house itself and articulated quarters into a village complex. The swept...

  • Jesuit Mission Economics and Plantations in the Caribbean (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Steve Lenik.

    A central objective of the Society of Jesus, known as the Jesuits, that emerged soon after the order’s founding in 1540 was to send out missionaries to establish and maintain communities of indigenous converts to Christianity. The mission emerged as a common institutionalized form to carry out this proselytizing, and has provided a useful analytical unit for archaeological research. However, the Jesuits operationalized other modes of colonization in the Americas including ranches, parishes, and...

  • Land, Labor, and Memory: Plantation Landscapes in Martinique (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Elizabeth C. Clay.

    Landscapes are shaped by the experiences of people over time, serve to establish and reinforce social relations, and are spaces within which individuals actively construct their experiences with each other and with their environment. This paper focuses on plantation landscapes on the island of Martinique, where the significant role of the French sugar industry - made possible by slave labor - in the globalizing Atlantic world is still clearly visible. Plantation sites that have not been lost to...

  • "Little necessaries or comforts": Enslaved Laborers’ Access to Markets within the Anglophone Caribbean (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Lynsey A. Bates.

    At the household level, analysis of material culture recovered from Caribbean plantation villages has revealed internal groups with differential access to resources. The dynamic economic systems that enslaved people developed necessarily depended on local expectations of labor and subsistence cultivation, as well as Atlantic shifts in commodity prices and political control. Expanding on household studies, I assess marketing strategies between plantation communities by tracing how imported goods...

  • Plantation Archaeology in French Guiana: Results Investigations at Habitation Loyola (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only Antoine Loyer Rousselle.

    The Habitation Loyola (1668-1778) is a Jesuit mission and plantation located in French Guiana that was occupied between 1668 and 1768. The establishment was dedicated to the production of sugar, indigo, coffee, cocoa, and cotton to finance the evangelization of Amerindian groups in South America. This vast plantation site has been studied since 1996 through a partnership between Université Laval and French researchers. The latest excavations (2011-2015) have been conducted on the storehouse and...

  • Spatial Analysis of the Free African Community of Kingstown, Tortola, British Virgin Islands (2016)
    DOCUMENT Citation Only John Chenoweth.

    Forming a different kind of plantation community, a unique group of African people who were never enslaved existed in the British Virgin Islands (BVI) in the 1830s to 1850s.  Captured for slavery in Africa after the British ended the slave trade in 1807, and after much loss and time, these people were given a plantation on Tortola where they lived—surrounded at first by enslaved people—in a settlement known as Kingstown.  An 1831 map of their settlement exists, providing insight primarily into...