Archive for March, 2008

Nash Farm Battlefield Park Opens
March 31, 2008

Here is a Youtube link to a video interview with B.J. Mathis as she discusses the recent history of the Nash Farm battlefield park at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lMqMH9ynI-8

Henry County’s Nash Farm Battlefield Park is Now Open!

March 15, 2008, Hampton/Lovejoy, Georgia

Henry County, Georgia officially opened it’s Nash Farm Battlefield Park for daily public use on this date. This 204 acre park occupies the site of a fierce Civil War Cavalry battle and a later major Infantry battle. The park, located along the Clayton-Henry County line east of Lovejoy, Georgia, is mostly in former cattle and buffalo pasture and it represents a fast-disappearing rural landscape on the outskirts of metropolitan Atlanta. In 2007 the LAMAR Institute conducted a historical archaeology survey of the battlefield. The report from this study, authored by Daniel Elliott and Tracy M. Dean, was submitted to Henry County Government in August, 2007. This same report is available to the public online at this link:

Click the link below for a .pdf version of the LAMAR Institute’s report on the Nash Farm battlefield:

publication-123

or for a copy of the same report in Microsoft Word format, click on:

Nash Farm Battlefield: History and Archaeology, LAMAR Institute Publication Series, Report 123. The LAMAR Institute, Savannah, Georgia, 2007.

For more historical information, visit Henry County’s website for the Nash Farm Battlefield Park at http://www.henrycountybattlefield.com/

Atlanta’s Sprawl Threatens Georgia’s Greenspaces.

Metropolitan Atlanta Sprawl, 1973-1997 (Courtesy NASA)

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Marty Willett–Man with a Plan (for Fort Hawkins)
March 31, 2008

 Fort Hawkins Master Plan Unveiled

March, 2008, Macon, Georgia

The Fort Hawkins Commission, led by Chairman Marty Willett, have published their Master Plan for the future of Fort Hawkins. Willett’s ambitious$3.5 million dollar stewardship plan addresses the needs for the fort and should result in a wonderful heritage tourist attraction for Macon and central Georgia. The LAMAR Institute is delighted to have been a part of this effort and we look forward to continued participation in bringing this strategically important United States Army post, circa 1806-1819, back to life through historical archaeology.

See also this recent newspaper article by Matt Barnwell in the March 28 edition of the Macon Telegraph, posted online at http://www.macon.com/149/story/307025.html

Kettle Creek Revolutionary War Battlefield Project
March 31, 2008

Virginia Gazette April 2, 1779

SEEKING PRIMARY DOCUMENTS ABOUT THE BATTLE

We are currently searching for primary documents relating to the February 14, 1779 battle at Kettle Creek in Wilkes County, Georgia. If you have any letters, maps, military documents, or other primary records from the time of the battle, or other (reliable) secondary documents that are obscure, we would love to see them and take a digital photo for use in our current research project. If you would like to help, contact: dantelliott@windstream.net

Kettle Creek Battlefield

Description
Archaeological survey of the Kettle Creek battlefield in rural Wilkes County, Georgia began in February 2008. A second phase of the field survey will continue to build on the discoveries made during the initial work. The battle of Kettle Creek on February 14, 1779 was a fight between North Carolina and South Carolina Loyalist militia and Georgia and South Carolina Patriot militia. The Patriots emerged the victors in this three hour firefight. Although casualties were relatively slight, this Patriot victory sent a powerful signal to the British invaders that Loyalist support in the Southern colonies was far less than expected. The survey will make detailed topographic maps of the battlefield and carefully locate and recover battle related artifacts. This project is funded by the US Dept Interior, National Park Service, Preserve America grant program and the City of Washington, Georgia.

Contact information

Daniel T. Elliott
P.O. Box 2992
Savannah, Georgia 31402
United States of America
7063417796
dantelliott@windstream.net

Bibliography
Robert Scott Davis, Jr., Georgians in the Revolution: at Kettle Creek (Wilkes Co.) and Burke County. Southern Historical Press, . Easley, 1986.Janet H. Standard, The Battle of Kettle Creek: A Turning Point of the American Revolution in the South. Wilkes Publishing Company. Washington, GA, 1973.

Archaeofest 2008
March 31, 2008

ArchaeoFest 2008

May 31

SOLD OUT!

10AM-3PM
Phone: (912) 651-6850
Admission: Yes
Location: Battlefield Memorial Park, corner of MLK and Louisville Rd., Savannah, GA

Visit the Coastal Heritage Society’s webpage at http://chsgeorgia.org for more information.
A one-of-a-kind hands-on experience with archaeology. Kids of all ages will enjoy learning about the “real-life CSI” techniques historical detectives employ to learn secrets from the past. Activities, puppet show, ground penetrating radar (GPR) demonstration–Fun for adults too! Sponsored by the Savannah History Museum, Coastal Heritage Society, Savannah.

KEEP TUNED TO THIS STATION FOR ARCHAEOFEST 2009!

Archaeology of Savannah’s Revolutionary Past
March 30, 2008

PRESS RELEASE

COASTAL HERITAGE SOCIETY

For release Friday, March 21, 2008

Archaeologists Discover Artifacts from 1779 Battle of Savannah in Madison Square

Today Coastal Heritage Society archaeologists unearthed several artifacts from the October 1779 Battle of Savannah in Madison Square in downtown Savannah. Lead archaeologist Rita Elliott and her team discovered two musket balls—one French, the other British—as well as a shoe buckle, a brass ring, and lots of loose brick fragments, in the northeast corner of Madison Square (the corner sandwiched between the DeSoto Hilton Hotel and E. Shaver, Bookseller). The discoveries come on the fifth and final day of a series of digs that began in Emmett Park on East Bay Street.

Elliott believes the site occupies the location of a French and American false attack on British lines, designed to distract attention away from the main attack on the Spring Hill Redoubt—now the site of Battlefield Memorial Park on MLK and Louisville Road. The brick fragments may be remnants of a former military barracks which were torn down prior to the battle to provide cover for British troops defending the city. Ironically, today’s discoveries took place in the shadow of a monument to Sgt. William Jasper, who died in the 1779 battle.

Quick facts:

  • The work is funded by a $37,857 American Battlefield Protection Program grant from the National Park Service.
  • The team used computer software to match modern maps with more than a dozen historical maps, and pinpoint the most likely place to find artifacts.
  • The team is headed by CHS Archaeologist Rita Elliott, who also headed the CHS team that found artifacts and fortifications on Battlefield Memorial Park in 2005. archaeologists Dan Elliott and Laura Seifert round out the team, along with veteran volunteer archaeologist Carl Arndt.
  • This is a year-long project with multiple phases of research, field work, lab work, and report writing.
  • Between 8,000 and 12,000 troops took part in the October 1779 battle. The British forces defeated a combined French and American army, and roughly 800 soldiers were killed or wounded.

This material is based upon work assisted by a grant from the Department of the Interior, National Park Service. Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of the Interior.

UPDATE: 04/20/2008.

Since this past Monday our crew dug up six feet of Revolutionary 
War dirt, actually only 5 feet as the top 1 foot covered the period from 1783-
2008.  In the top 3 feet of it was the backfill dirt that was put there in late 
1782 by Major General Anthony Wayne (fellow PA guy) and his men. Beneath that 
is 2 more feet covering the period from September 1779-mid 1782. The very 
bottom 6 inches or so is the Siege of Savannah layer, September and October 
1779. It had small lead musket balls, possibly from Pulaski's Legion. We were 
in a British ditch outside of an earthen fort. We discovered it about a month 
ago and returned this week for a bigger sample. We found it through several 
means including historical map research, GPR survey, and dumb luck. Our 2 meter 
by 2 meter test unit came down on the edge of it perfectly so that we also have 
a good idea of its orientation. This part of the Savannah battlefield was lost 
since soon after General Wayne's men filled it in. Oh, and in the level just 
above the battle, which had lots of post-battle debris, we found a single lead 
musket ball that was made into a die. Lucky seven, lucky seven. 
It was in great condition. 
The British troops that garrisoned this part 
of the defenses were "Armed negroes and pickets", or the enslaved people 
belonging to Loyalist jerks and some watchful sharpshooters. The crack British 
troops were kept safe from harm, about a half mile to the northeast.