New Archaeology Exhibit Showcases Local, State History - Southern Maryland Headline News

New Archaeology Exhibit Showcases Local, State History


LA PLATA, Md. (Sept. 24, 2009)—A new archaeology exhibition is on display in the lobby of the Charles County Government building, at 200 Baltimore Street in La Plata. The new exhibit, developed and installed at no cost to Charles County Government, reflects Charles County history through artifacts discovered here but conserved and stored at the state-of-the-art Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory at Jefferson Patterson Park & Museum (JPPM) in Calvert County.

The exhibit showcases Native American artifacts from the Indian Head area that were excavated after an explosion in 1957 revealed evidence of early Indian settlements. Since that time, investigators have recovered more than 11,000 items, including artifacts and animal bones. Objects discovered in the successful 2008 search for Moore’s Lodge, Charles County’s first courthouse, will also be on display.

The new exhibit was developed in partnership with the Maryland Historical Trust, the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab, the Naval Support Facility Indian Head, and Charles County’s Department of Economic Development and Tourism. A grant from the Institute for Museum, Preservation, Archaeology Research and Training (IMPART) provided a stipend for a St. Mary's College of Maryland student intern to research artifacts and to work with JPPM staff to develop and install it for Charles County’s citizens and visitors.

“The Maryland Historical Trust and the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Laboratory were pleased to work with Charles County on this exciting project that highlights some of the county’s buried past,” said Dr. Patricia Samford, Director of the Maryland Archaeological Conservation Lab. “Our long-term goal is to place archaeological exhibits in every county in Maryland, and we are delighted that Charles County was willing to be our pilot for this statewide project.”

Charles County Board of Commissioners President Wayne Cooper said, “We are happy to bring a chapter of Charles County history to light in this exhibit for our citizens and visitors, and to be the first project of this type in the state of Maryland. We know from archaeological digs at Port Tobacco, Moore’s Lodge, and other areas of Charles County that much of our County’s rich history can be uncovered through archaeology, and we hope to be able to discover more of it this way in the future.”

This exhibition, meant to be a model for other Maryland counties, showcases local and state history through artifacts that the public does not usually have the opportunity to see. People are welcome to view the exhibit in the Charles County Government Building Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

Source: Charles County Board of Commissioners

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