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The Elk Horn and the Miller Whose Front Name Was George: Places and People Without History

Author(s): Robert Schuyler

Year: 2015

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Summary

Most places and people who have existed in world history have left few if any primary or personal records (archtectural descriptions, ground plans, inventories, personal letters, journals, diaries, or memoirs). The excavation of a standard 19th Century saloon in Utah and the biography of its owner serve as an example of how multiple ranges of information can be used to reconstruct many average past institutions on both a physical and human level. Only one saloon owner on the Western frontier left an extensive diary. If in contrast attention is moved from such powerful personal documents to social historic sources and material remains it is possible in some situations to produce detailed, focused, almost ethnographic images of the past. The Elk Horn Saloon was established in 1876/77 at a mining town, Silver Reef, in southwestern Utah and was abandoned by 1895. Its excavation and extensive archival research recreate it as an "historic ethnography."


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Cite this Record

The Elk Horn and the Miller Whose Front Name Was George: Places and People Without History. Robert Schuyler. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Seattle, Washington. 2015 ( tDAR id: 434062)


Keywords


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 479

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