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Blackmar-Eaton Project Archaeological Investigation

The Phase III Data Recovery project area was subdivided into south-eastern (Locus I), south-western (Locus II) and northern (Locus III) portions.  Ap-Horizon soils were sampled in a series of forty (40) 1×1 m (3.3 x 3.3 ft) test units (TUs), a total area of 40 sq. m (131.23 sq ft) and constituting a 1.08 % site sample. This was followed by the mechanical removal of topsoil from a series of six (6) 5 x 30 m (16 x 98 ft) stripping trenches (STs), constituting a total area of 900 sq m (2,952.76 sq ft), after which all features observed at the plowzone – subsoil transition were investigated and documented.

Data recovery excavations produced substantial subsurface cultural deposits that are associated with the 19th and early 20th century occupation of a rural tenant property, including the physical remains of a small frame tenant house (MDS 1001), outbuildings, fenced yards/pastures/lawns and/or refuse disposal areas.  The majority of cultural materials were recovered from three large historic features that represent the central domestic core of the former rental property.

Feature 3 contained artifacts associated with clothing as well as other small personal artifacts lost during the use of the feature as a privy during both the first and second occupations; material evidence of sewing and writing was found as well as other small personal artifacts that may have been lost during privy use.

Feature 4/42 was used as a outbuilding in the first occupation; that was converted into a agri-processing and refuse disposal area during the second occupation, and includes material evidence for animal butchery, lard rendering and cheese making.

Feature 44 was a wood-lined, L-shaped cellar pit belonging to MDS 1001, containing house contents, architectural materials, both in-situ, and collapsed upper story(ies?), capped with a collapsed brick chimney. Material evidence for the domestic activities that once took place in and around MDS 1001 / Feature 44 include: food preparation, consumption and storage; in-house manufacture and/or repair of shoes and clothing; as well as leisure activities, evinced by an array of tobacco smoking pipes and alcoholic beverage containers.