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[Not] Finding Vann’s Quarters: Landscape Dynamics and the Archaeology of the Subaltern on a 19th Century Cherokee Plantation

Author(s): Travis Williams

Year: 2016

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Summary

Historical archaeologists, to varying degrees, have long been interested in researching the lives of people from the past who left little (and about whom little was left) in the form of textual documentation. In North America and beyond, such interests most often take the form of archaeology of slavery and bondage. Unfortunately, the forces that conspired to prevent the voices of enslaved peoples from entering the historical record (i.e., colonialism, racialization, ethnocentrism, capitalism) have also contributed to the obfuscation or destruction of the material records those peoples left behind. This poster presents findings from research in the context of destruction and its implications for our capacity to understand the past. Through the juxtaposition of historical surveys, decades of aerial photographs, and contemporary, computer-generated map projections, this poster explores the landscape dynamics of an early 19th century plantation in the then heart of Cherokee country, contemporary Northwest Georgia. It documents the researcher’s unsuccessful attempts to find and document a specific slave community, and, more importantly, what can be learned from such a research endeavor.


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[Not] Finding Vann’s Quarters: Landscape Dynamics and the Archaeology of the Subaltern on a 19th Century Cherokee Plantation. Travis Williams. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Orlando, Florida. 2016 ( tDAR id: 405265)


Keywords


Spatial Coverage

min long: -91.274; min lat: 24.847 ; max long: -72.642; max lat: 36.386 ;

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America