The Hunting and Foraging Strategies of an Enslaved Population at the Belvoir Plantation

Author(s): Ralph Koziarski

Year: 2020


This is an abstract from the session entitled "Archaeology and Analysis of the Belvoir Quarter" , at the 2020 annual meeting of the Society for Historical Archaeology.

Historic literature frequently alludes to plantation owners being unable to or unwilling to adequately feed their slaves. It was therefore not uncommon for slaves to supplement their diet with wild game. There has been little said of how this was done. Specifically how were the work intensive tasks of hunting and foraging incorporated into the already physically demanding and time-starved day-to-day lives of plantation slaves?

Faunal remains recovered from the Belvoir plantation’s slave-quarters demonstrate that the basic protein sources provided to the slaves were supplemented by hunting and foraging of a broad array of wild fauna from local habitats, and further via possible small animal husbandry. Ethnohistoric data and animal behavioral data were used to reconstruct how the hunting and foraging activities may have been scheduled and incorporated into the slaves’ daily lives, and how task and resource sharing might have mitigated against risk of starvation.  

Cite this Record

The Hunting and Foraging Strategies of an Enslaved Population at the Belvoir Plantation. Ralph Koziarski. 2020 ( tDAR id: 456816)

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Spatial Coverage

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

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contact(s): Society for Historical Archaeology

Record Identifiers

PaperId(s): 692