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Digging in the Wilderness: Uncovering George Washington’s Formal Mount Vernon Landscape.

Author(s): Leah Stricker ; Luke J. Pecoraro

Year: 2015

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In January of 1785, George Washington began work to create a western vista that would be visible from his home based on European landscape design principles. This process included developing and redesigning the grounds around the mansion into a single system, reshaping the upper and lower gardens, laying out a bowling green, planting shrubberies and wildernesses, and planning walks around and through these elements. Archaeological investigations in the spring of 2014 focused on the north wilderness, and revealed features related to multiple phases of planting and configuring trees and paths in the wilderness area. This paper will summarize the excavation, which are part of an on-going attempt to understand the complexities of Washington’s formalized home plantation layout, as well as efforts to preserve or restore the varied landscape features.

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Digging in the Wilderness: Uncovering George Washington’s Formal Mount Vernon Landscape.. Leah Stricker, Luke J. Pecoraro. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 433714)


Temporal Keywords
18th Century

Spatial Coverage

min long: -129.199; min lat: 24.495 ; max long: -66.973; max lat: 49.359 ;

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 534

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