Archaeology Blog

2022 Field School Week One

By Emma Coffey


Poplar Forest’s 2022 Archaeology Field School began this week and already students are finding incredibly interesting things. Before the students began their initial excavations, they were given a tour of the house and the archaeology lab along with a lecture on Poplar Forest’s history on Monday. Since then, they have been digging test units in one of the fields located on the property in search of the stables that would have existed during Thomas Jefferson’s ownership.


So far, students have found a variety of artifacts including different types of nails, ceramic fragments, pieces of glass, and more. Fortunately, these artifacts indicate that they are of the right period as many of them come from the early 19th-century when Thomas Jefferson was alive. We currently have six excavation units and students will continue to dig them, hopefully finding more artifacts which will indicate we are in the right area for the stables. On Thursday morning, students focused on wrapping up their first units which included taking pictures. They also practiced drawing maps and profiles of their completed units which included making note of important features.