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LEARNing with Archaeology at James Madison’s Montpelier: Engaging with the Public and Descendants through Immersive Archaeological Programs

Author(s): Meredith P. Luze ; Matthew Reeves ; Terry Brock

Year: 2016

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Summary

At James Madison’s Montpelier, the LEARN program (Locate, Excavate, Analyze, Reconstruct, and Network) provides visitors with an immersive, hands-on experience in the archaeological process. The week-long LEARN expedition programs for metal detecting, excavation, laboratory analysis, and log cabin reconstruction offer participants an in-depth view of how Montpelier examines, interprets, and preserves its archaeological heritage. This paper examines the efficacy of these programs in communicating the methodologies and relevancy of archaeology to members of the public with no prior archaeological experience. This paper particularly examines an excavation expedition held from April 12-17, 2015 for descendants of enslaved people and the dynamic created through collaboration between archaeologists and descendants with a keen interest in their history. During the course of the excavation, on-site interviews, roundtable discussion, and a groundbreaking ceremony, archaeology proved to be a catalyst for revealing and creating memories and for broader conversations about heritage and reclaiming the past.


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LEARNing with Archaeology at James Madison’s Montpelier: Engaging with the Public and Descendants through Immersive Archaeological Programs. Meredith P. Luze, Matthew Reeves, Terry Brock. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Washington, D.C. 2016 ( tDAR id: 434920)


Keywords


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 829

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