On a typical day at George Washington’s Boyhood Home at Ferry Farm, visitors experiencing the house tour are ushered into the main hall upon which a dining table is set out before them with 18th-century reproductions of plates, glassware, wine bottles, and serving dishes. This setting creates an interactive experience for our visitors, transporting them … Continue reading Dig These Dishes! We Recreate an 18th Century Table Setting Using Only Artifacts.
The end of the 2020 dig season at George Washington’s Boyhood Home at Ferry Farm last October required we tidy up of all our tools used during the excavation. We cleaned and stored away the multiple shovels, trowels, and wheel barrels used at the site and hauled the sifting screens back to the shed. We … Continue reading Spot the Differences: Tools of the Trade
Like so many of you, in the middle of March this year, nearly all employees of George Washington’s Ferry Farm & Historic Kenmore began working from home and did not return to our offices for two and a half months. We expected a lengthy time away and, as such, prepared as best we could for … Continue reading How to Do Archaeology During a Pandemic
It’s that time of year again! Actually, it’s past that time of year but better late than never! The annual summer archaeological dig at George Washington’s Ferry Farm – delayed like so many other things by the COVID-19 pandemic – has finally begun! Ferry Farm’s summer archaeological excavation has become a fall dig too as … Continue reading We’re Digging!: A Preview of This Year’s Archaeology Excavation at Ferry Farm
Rodents are usually seen as one of a museum’s greatest enemies. They damage valuable artifacts and buildings, leave a mess wherever they go, and frighten unsuspecting visitors. Like most museums, Historic Kenmore does its best to make sure no pests make their home in the 18th century plantation house. But, before it became a museum … Continue reading The Unlikely Curator: What a Rodent’s Nest Reveals about Historic Kenmore
In this video, we pick apart a rodent's nest discovered by archaeologists investigating Historic Kenmore’s walls and floors for architectural artifacts. Like most museums, we take extensive pest prevention measures today but, back when it was an actual home, Kenmore was not always rodent-free. This nest revealed some fascinating history and told us a bit … Continue reading An Unlikely Curator: Inside a Historic Rodent’s Nest [Video]
Ferry Farm’s tens of thousands of years of human habitation has provided archaeologists with nearly 800,000 artifacts to date, consisting of discarded items left by the people who lived on, worked, or visited this land. A question we often receive from visitors is where are graves of the PEOPLE who left behind these discarded items? … Continue reading Where Are the Human Remains?: The Washington Family
In this video, curator Meghan Budinger and archaeologist Laura Galke discuss how small things like eating utensils recovered archaeologically reveal big things about the Washington family.
Editor’s Note: Looking back in time, people’s personal hygiene, fashion choices, medical treatments, and more sometimes look, at the very least, bizarre, if not outright disgusting. When confronted with these weird or gross practices, our first reaction can be to dismiss our ancestors as primitive, ignorant, or just silly. Before such judgments, however, we should try … Continue reading Time for Some Trash Talk: The Social Role of Garbage at Historic Kenmore