Scratching the Surface: Using GIS to Understand Richmond Archaeology

Author(s): Jolene Smith; Ellen Chapman

Year: 2016


Richmond, Virginia’s first official archaeological site record dates to 1963. In the intervening half century, the archaeological landscape has changed in physical and metaphorical ways. One important yardstick of these changes is the 1985 Richmond Metropolitan Area Archeological Survey (RMAAS), a large regional planning project conducted by Virginia Commonwealth University Archaeological Research Center. This paper explores Richmond’s archaeological landscape through a Geographical Information System (GIS) that compares modern development data and site inventories with information from the RMAAS predictive model and archaeological sensitivity zones. This analysis will consider the trajectory of the city’s archaeological resources and potential over the past thirty years through identifying likely site destruction, locating city neighborhoods with high archaeological integrity, and comparing archaeological survey coverage in the Richmond municipal boundaries with its surrounding counties.

Cite this Record

Scratching the Surface: Using GIS to Understand Richmond Archaeology. Jolene Smith, Ellen Chapman. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434394)


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 643