Good Living in Hard Times: De-Urbanization and Personal Wealth in Nineteenth Century New Market, Maryland
Author(s): Ralph Koziarski
New Market is a small community in Frederick County, Maryland, whose origins and early nineteenth century economic peak are tied to travel and trade, on the National Turnpike. Following the development of the B&O railroad during the mid-nineteenth century, use of the turnpike declined, subsequently shrinking the town’s economy.
Excavations sponsored by the Maryland State Highways Administration have recovered datasets from two properties in New Market. Identified components include a late eighteenth century tavern or inn, an early nineteenth century home, mid-nineteenth century parsonage and workshop, and a late nineteenth to early twentieth century African-American home.
Faunal remains collected from each component were used to establish the relative economic and nutritional value within each assemblage. Access to meat at each component was then measured against the economic potential of the community as a whole, as documented in the historic record. Preliminary results show that decline in personal wealth, as measured by ability to purchase meat, lagged behind the decline of New Market as a commercial center. The lag may relate to improvements in trade and communications, which had allowed for the decentralization of the local economy, which in turn allowed individual actors to weather economic declines at specific nodes.
Cite this Record
Good Living in Hard Times: De-Urbanization and Personal Wealth in Nineteenth Century New Market, Maryland. Ralph Koziarski. Presented at The 82nd Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Washington, DC. 2018 ( tDAR id: 443163)
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Abstract Id(s): 22763