Phase II Archaeological Investigations of 18ST233 and 18ST329 Aboard Webster Field Annex Naval Air Station, Patuxent River St. Mary’s County, Maryland

Summary

This report presents the results of Phase II archaeological investigations undertaken at two colonial sites, 18ST233 and 18ST329, located aboard the Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Webster Field Annex (NAS WFA), in St. Inigoes, St. Mary’s County, Maryland. Testing of the two sites was conducted in partial fulfillment of Section 110 of the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966. The project was undertaken by the Southern Maryland Regional Center at the Jefferson Patterson Park and Museum, in cooperation with the Natural and Cultural Resources Branch of the Environmental and Natural Resources Division of the Naval Air Station Patuxent River (NAS PAX). Funding for this project was provided by a grant from the Department of Defense’s Legacy Resources Management Program.

The purpose of this investigation was to determine the level of integrity and the research potential of these two sites. This information will be used for resources management decisions. Fieldwork was conducted from March through October 2000. Field methods for this study consisted of the excavation of 20 five-by-five-foot archaeological test units at 18ST233 and 19 units at 18ST329, for a total of 39 test units. The plowzone was removed from all test units, and all features below the plowzone were recorded. One feature at each site was selected for testing based upon the likelihood of recovering important data regarding the temporal affiliation and function of each site. Feature soils were removed stratigraphically in order to assess the integrity of the feature and/or the impact of disturbances upon it. Materials retained from the plowzone and from the features have slightly altered our understanding of the two sites. There were 619,049 artifacts recovered from 18ST233, while 95,385 were found at 18ST329. Site 18ST233 dates to the mid seventeenth century; 18ST329 dates from the late seventeenth to mid eighteenth century. The presence of intact, stratified cultural features on both sites indicated a high level of integrity and, therefore, great research potential. Additionally, the identification of at least three historic grave shafts on 18ST233 mandates that special resource management initiatives be considered.

This project resulted in a better understanding of the sites examined. In 18ST233, speculation as to the dates of occupation was resolved through the recovery of numerous diagnostic artifacts. This site was occupied during the earliest period of European settlement in Maryland, in the second and third quarters of the seventeenth century. Original identification of this site was based on a faint scatter of potentially early colonial artifacts. Testing exposed the material richness of this site, demonstrating the footprint of early colonial occupations. The discovery of grave shafts during the testing is significant as it locates previously unrecorded human remains. Additionally, the identification of these graves may have major repercussions on future development and resource management in the area.

Although 18ST329 has been investigated several times, Phase II testing on this site yielded new and unexpected results that affected previous interpretations. Relying on broad-scale historical research and upon conservative analysis of previously recovered artifacts, a late seventeenth to mid eighteenth century occupational range was assigned to this site.

Cite this Record

Phase II Archaeological Investigations of 18ST233 and 18ST329 Aboard Webster Field Annex Naval Air Station, Patuxent River St. Mary’s County, Maryland. Christopher Sperling, Laura J. Galke, Tricia Pyne. 2001 ( tDAR id: 393596) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8FX7BHP

Spatial Coverage

min long: -76.442; min lat: 38.13 ; max long: -76.413; max lat: 38.166 ;

Record Identifiers

MAC Lab Accession Number(s): 2001.002

Notes

General Note: The following physical records are held at MAC Lab: Field Notes, Lab Notes, Maps, Artifact Catalog, Color Negatives, Kodachrome Slides, Photologs, List of Documentation, acid-free copy of all paper records stored in the secondary records storage room

General Note: Date Collected:MARCH- DECEMBER 2000

Redaction Note: This document has been redacted. To request access to a nonredacted copy, contact the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory.

File Information

  Name Size Creation Date Date Uploaded Access
Old-Chapel-Field-report-draft.pdf 7.90mb Jul 30, 2014 2:47:35 PM Confidential
DISCLAIMER: The following report is a DRAFT that was never officially finalized when completed in 2001. The project ended and project staff moved on to other positions before the editing process was completed. The work left undone primarily involved fine tuning of text, integration of figures, and the compilation of appendices. In 2001, the inclusion of the figures and appendices in the final formatting were not easily done in one document because of technological limitations. In preparation for inclusion in tDAR, this document was therefore updated in 2014 so that all figures and appendices are incorporated into one file. The current version is very close to being final. It should be noted that the Old Chapel Field sites are among the most frequently accessed and researched collections at the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory. As a result, analysis of the collection is ongoing, and some results and artifact identifications included in this report have been superseded by later studies. There will never be a “final” word about Old Chapel Field as long as people are still interested in examining it, so keeping the report in a not-quite-finished state leaves room for incorporating new discoveries. Sara Rivers-Cofield Curator, Federal Collections ; MAC Laboratory; July 23, 2014
Old-Chapel-Field-report-draft-_Redacted.pdf 7.22mb Aug 28, 2014 2:32:59 PM Confidential
This report has been redacted. DISCLAIMER: The following report is a DRAFT that was never officially finalized when completed in 2001. The project ended and project staff moved on to other positions before the editing process was completed. The work left undone primarily involved fine tuning of text, integration of figures, and the compilation of appendices. In 2001, the inclusion of the figures and appendices in the final formatting were not easily done in one document because of technological limitations. In preparation for inclusion in tDAR, this document was therefore updated in 2014 so that all figures and appendices are incorporated into one file. The current version is very close to being final. It should be noted that the Old Chapel Field sites are among the most frequently accessed and researched collections at the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory. As a result, analysis of the collection is ongoing, and some results and artifact identifications included in this report have been superseded by later studies. There will never be a “final” word about Old Chapel Field as long as people are still interested in examining it, so keeping the report in a not-quite-finished state leaves room for incorporating new discoveries. Sara Rivers-Cofield Curator, Federal Collections ; MAC Laboratory; July 23, 2014

Accessing Restricted Files

At least one of the files for this resource is restricted from public view. For more information regarding access to these files, please reference the contact information below

Contact(s): Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory Federal Curator; Michael Smolek