The Changing Landscape of Indian Camp, a piedmont Virginia plantation


Indian Camp, a plantation in the eastern Virginia piedmont, served as an outlying quarter farm for tobacco cultivation from 1730 to the 1790s. Just prior to 1800, an ordinary and retail store were built there and continued in operation into the 1840s. Since 2011, archaeologists working on the property, now known as French’s Tavern, have concentrated efforts in a field west of the surviving historic structures. The site contains a complex array of post holes, pits, piers and other features, evidence of a dynamic landscape that took shape in the final quarter of the eighteenth century and was reconfigured throughout the antebellum period. This paper reviews the archaeological evidence uncovered to date and considers the roles of ordinaries and stores as important places of exchange for both free and enslaved piedmont residents, allowing rural people to cross plantation boundaries and participate, to some extent, in wider social and economic networks.

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The Changing Landscape of Indian Camp, a piedmont Virginia plantation. Barbara Heath, Meagan Dennison, Crystal Ptacek, Hope Smith. Presented at Society for Historical Archaeology, Quebec City, Quebec, Canada. 2014 ( tDAR id: 437200)

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Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

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PaperId(s): SYM-65,05