Tag Archives: great dismal swamp

Update on Excavations in the Great Dismal Swamp

New archaeological excavations at the Great Dismal Swamp, near my hometown in Virginia, continue to yield fascinating finds, highlighting the world of run-away slaves and the Underground Railroad.

I have written about the excavations in two previous posts: “Archaeology in the Great Dismal Swamp” and “Continued Excavations in the Great Dismal Swamp.”

This month’s Archaeology Magazine highlights the season’s findings including solid evidence of human occupation (to support earlier historical documentation of the events) including postholes for housing, rubbish pits, and interesting portable human artifacts.

To read more about these findings, see the article “Letters from Virginia – American Refugees” in this month’s Archaeology Magazine.

Archaeology in the Great Dismal Swamp

Archaeologists in the Great Dismal Swamp (right where I grew up) are researching and exploring the swamp area that served as a refuge for run away slaves and those operating on the underground railroad.

The swamp, originally 2,000 square miles of wetland, was the ideal hiding place for those looking to escape slavery or life outside of the norms of society.

Since 2001, Sayers has been researching and exploring the presence of maroons (African-Americans who permanently escaped enslavement) and other communities in the swamp’s approximately 200 square miles of undeveloped, densely wooded wetlands in southeast Virginia and northeast North Carolina.

Read more about the research in this Science Daily article