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Archaeological Excavation

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A group of archaeologist, historians, forensic experts and a collage intern were determined to uncover the truth behind the secret in the cellar. The site for the research was within the colonial settlement of Providence. The settlers were mostly Europeans. The research goal was about gathering of evidence that led to the discovery of the skeleton remains of a young man found in a cellar in a place that was believed to be a colonial settlement. The archaeologists were to do a pedestrian survey of a recently plowed field in the Chesapeake Area. There they would further investigate the 17th century artifacts scattered in the area.  

During the investigation, the archaeologists and the team in general used the excavation technique, which required digging of the debris where the archaeological remains were believed to exist. The team needed to do geographical survey in order to collect information on the subsurface features, such as burials. The team also conducted a shovel test pit, an archaeological technique used to discover the exact area of investigation in early parts of an excavation. The team then dug several quadrants within the shallow trench. The quadrants were to help in the research process without causing damages to the research site. From the shovel pits, the team was able to discover remains of a human being, which they believed was buried under a house together with the thrush in a shallow trench.

The body was folded into a small space between the floor beams. The cellar was without a coffin, which raised some questions to the researchers. Clues were needed to answer these questions, so the team asked for help of a local historian who shared his knowledge on the local history. The team then needed to estimate the year the remains were buried in the cellar. Dating the site technique was used by investigating the artifacts that were found in the site. Using the terminus post quem, the archaeologists were able to tell the date, after which the mystery man was buried,

After the discovery of the terminus post quem of the remains, the team needed the help of a forensic archaeologist to examine the body in situ before taking it to the lab for actual analysis. From the initial examinations by the forensic archaeologist, the sex of the skeleton was identified as male, the ancestry as European and age as a teenager. In order to find out more about the remains, the team conducted a lab result analysis. From the analysis, the team found about the exact age of the teenager as between fifteen to seventeen years old since the growth plates in his arm and legs were unfused. The team also observed that the perimortem fracture of the right wrist might have caused some trauma near the time of death. 

Based on the archaeologist’s research and analysis, the archaeologists concluded that the discovered bones were from a young boy of about sixteen years old who had a European ancestry. The boy’s life and death fit that of an indentured servant who was experiencing hard labor, poor health and a hidden burial. The masters during that time have been hiding their servant’s death. The archaeologists concluded that the boy worked too hard like a slave and was buried like a dog.

The boy might have died in a violent way. The wrist fracture was an indication that the boy did not die because of disease or accident, but was murdered. The wrist fracture was a consistent of a defensive injury which when combined with his hidden burial indicates the violent death.        

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