Jul 23, 2019

Field School Week 6

By J. Brooks McCabe This was the last week for our Field School students. The students wrapped up the remaining units behind the South Tenant House. The recovered artifacts date after Jefferson’s life, such as possible iron handles, tableware and other ceramics. Along with the units at the South Tenant House, the two remaining 5×5 […]


Jul 9, 2019

Field School Week 5

by Savhanna Long This week was very exciting for our Field School students, as they finished up their units from the Stable Survey and moved onto the area behind the South Tenant House! The students began to close up their larger 5’x5’ units that were focused in areas of particular interest due to their artifacts […]


Jul 5, 2019

Field School Week 4

By Mary Del Vecchio This week is about landscape archaeology. We began learning about the different subfields of archaeology like what pollen analysis can tell us and how GIS (Geographic Information Systems) were used at Poplar Forest to help find where sites could be located. We learned how this technology could assist and we also […]


Jun 26, 2019

Field School Week 3

by Lewis Ward This week for Field School at Poplar Forest, we did quite a bit of traveling mixed in with our usual itinerary of digging. For the past few weeks, we have mainly been working on 2’ x 2’ holes, at the South East Curtilage site, in hopes to find evidence of a stable. […]


Jun 19, 2019

Field School Week 2

by Melissa Penner The Archaeology Field School at Poplar Forest learned about the artifacts found during excavations in the past and applied these lessons to the theme of the week: material culture. Lectures taught by Dr. Jenn focused on the types of materials excavators have- and will- find in the Poplar Forest field grounds such […]


Jun 7, 2019

First Week of Field School 2019

The department kicked off its 30th annual archaeological field school this Monday and welcomed seven undergraduates as students. For the next six weeks they’ll be writing our blog posts and recounting their excavations, finds, and field trips as the class progresses.


Jul 16, 2018

Field School Week 6

By Eric Taylor and Alice Keith The sixth and final week of the 2018 Archaeology Field School at Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest has drawn to a close. It was an amazing week for the students, intern, and staff working on the North and South Tenant House sites. We finished excavating builder’s trenches, took final elevations, […]


Jul 9, 2018

Field School Week 4

by Mat Parsons In the fourth week of the Poplar Forest Field school we once again returned to Monticello for a lesson in dendrochronology. We started the morning with a classroom instruction on how plantation landscapes change through time when left in fallow through woodland reclamation and the applications of dendrochronology. We then headed into […]


Jun 25, 2018

Field School Week 3

By Keilah and Kennis We started out the 3rd week at field school by visiting Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello. Whereas Poplar Forest represents Jefferson’s design interests as a private individual, his plantation house outside of Charlottesville demonstrates his affluence and responsibilities as a public figure. After attending a palynology lecture on site, our field school was […]


Jun 20, 2018

Field School Week 2

by Alaina Foster These past weeks at Poplar Forest have been exciting ones!  The field school students were introduced to archaeological field methods and excavation techniques for digging this fun Piedmont clay. First things first, teach them how to dig!


Jun 8, 2018

Archaeology Field School 2018 Week 1

The archaeology department began its 2018 field school this past Monday, welcoming six students and a summer research intern to the museum. Our project this summer focuses on the South Tenant House, a structure built in mid nineteenth century during the Hutter family’s ownership of the Poplar Forest plantation.   The brick South Tenant House […]


Nov 4, 2017

“Take heede when ye wash”: Laundry at Poplar Forest

Karen E. McIlvoy Who does the laundry in your house? Do you have a machine? According to the most recent statistics, almost 78% of laundry in the US is done by female household members. Today’s modern conveniences allow a single load of laundry to be completely cleaned and dried in about 90 minutes, but laundry […]