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Blacksmithing for Fun and Profit: Archaeological Investigations at 31NH755

Author(s): Natalie Pope ; Tracy A. Martin ; William G. Green

Year: 2017

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Archaeological investigations at an early 19th century historic site along the banks of the Lower Cape Fear River near Wilmington, North Carolina, uncovered evidence of a small blacksmith shop and adjacent domestic occupation.  Archaeological features included the footprint of the burned blacksmith shop, approximately 15 by 15 feet in size, along with a dense scatter of charcoal, slag, and scrap iron.  Adjacent to this building were structural posts and artifacts that appear to be related to a domestic occupation. Historical records indicate that during the early 19th century, the 1,400-acre plantation where this site was located was under the ownership of the Julius Walker family who was primarily involved in the cultivation of rice. Skilled African-American artisans, such as blacksmiths, were common on rice and other plantations. This paper describes the site and its possible role at the plantation and in the local market economy. 

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Blacksmithing for Fun and Profit: Archaeological Investigations at 31NH755. Natalie Pope, Tracy A. Martin, William G. Green. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Fort Worth, TX. 2017 ( tDAR id: 435379)


Spatial Coverage

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

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 172

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