Pig Manure and Swizzle Sticks: Defining an Archaeological Site Type

Author(s): James Gibb

Year: 2018


Low-density scatters of historic-era artifacts can be interpreted as byproducts of manure spreading. These are pieces of trash inadvertently mixed with food refuse that was fed to pigs. While most of these artifacts were not ingested, they became mired in the resulting manure which farmers spread on their fields as fertilizer. Whether or not a scatter of late historic artifacts represents manure spreading or some other kind of behavior can be tested archaeologically, and that is the subject of this paper. Archival data confirm that archaeological findings at the Ellsworth K. Russell farm site (18AN917) in Maryland connect World War II era commercial and institutional kitchens in Washington, DC, with the feeding of pigs and subsequent use of their manure on nearby fields.

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Pig Manure and Swizzle Sticks: Defining an Archaeological Site Type. James Gibb. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 442741)

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Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 20640