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From Colony to Country: The archaeology of national identity formation at New York City’s South Street Seaport

Author(s): Diane George

Year: 2014

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Summary

The half-century following the American Revolution was a vital time in the development of a national identity for the United States, as it moved from being a British colony to a newly-independent country. The assertive role of the United States in the 21st century world, including its involvement in ‘preemptive’ wars, is underlain by a sense of national superiority. This paper poses the question of whether early manifestations of this characteristic can be found in late 18th and early 19th century materials recovered during recent excavations at New York City’s South Street Seaport. The author will review some of the preliminary findings from those excavations and begin to interpret what the material remains might tell us about the formation of national identity in this transitional period of American history.


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From Colony to Country: The archaeology of national identity formation at New York City’s South Street Seaport. Diane George. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 436751)


Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): SYM-19,01

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