Articles, Books, Videos & Blogs

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A Selection of Articles, Papers, Books and Blogs on Philadelphia Archaeology
(Please forward your suggestions to phillyarchaeology@gmail.com)

Click here for Philly-area blogs…
Click here for Philly-area archaeology videos…
Click here for Project Report Index…
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ARTICLES AND BOOKS
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FEATURED JOURNAL
riverchron

Recent archaeological excavations in the Philadelphia waterfront communities North of the Benjamin Franklin Bridge — Port Richmond, Kensington-Fishtown, and the Northern Liberty — the topic of a new annual journal entitled River Chronicles. The new journal, to be published annually, is the creation of local Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey-based employees of AECOM, an American multinational engineering firm that provides design, consulting, construction, and management services to a wide range of clients.

AECOM is conducting excavations along Highway I-95 in Philadelphia as part of the I-95 Highway Improvement Project on behalf of the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PENNDOT) and the Federal Highway Administration. The new journal explores evidence of Native Americans, nineteenth-century glassworkers and potters, and everyday life in Philadelphia’s waterfront communities.

This first issue includes articles on the construction of privies (outhouses) (written by By George Cress and Daniel Eichinger), Native American life along the Delaware (by Doug Mooney), a saloon token (written by Thomas J. Kutys and Samuel A. Pickard), a moon man figurine (by Rebecca White), chamber pots (by Meta Janowitz), a Native American fire-cracked hearth (by Jeremy W. Koch), and a glass garden cloche (by Mary Mills). History about the Schuylkill Rangers gang is also presented (by Samuel Pickard) along with a write up about the web-based, interactive ‘smart report’ being created for the I-95 archaeology project (contributed by digital cultural specialists Mark Petrovich and Chester Cunanan). An introduction to the River Chronicles project is provided by Steve Tull, alongside a Letter from the Editor, Grace H. Ziesing.
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FEATURED ARTICLES

jedscanPhiladelphia Story: “We the People” and 3D Scanning at the National Constitution Center Site
In August of 2016, artifacts excavated from the site of the National Constitution Center (NCC) in Independence National Historical Park were 3D scanned for an upcoming display at the NCC. Bernard Means of the Virtual Curation Laboratory at Virginia Commonwealth University blogged about on the process on August 14th, 2016. Means also scanned the mastodon tooth found at the Franklin Court site and he scanned NPS archaeologist Jed Levin and AECOM material culture specialist Debbie Miller! See Mean’s follow-up Facebook posts: painted 3D printed toy wooden boat, painted a 3D printed replica, auintal vase , child’s slip decorated dish, toothbrush, thimble, corset stay, slip pot, scanning a green glazed plate, scanning a cremeware baking dish, scanning NPS archeologist Jed Levin, carved wooden horse toy, 3D printed toy horse, wine bottle seal, domino, redware plate,a thimble, a 3D printing of the thimble, and very cool combination of two 3D scans– the Ben Franklin statue at the National Constitution Center’s signer’s room combined WITH the mastodon tooth discovered at the location of the Franklin mansion site of Franklin Court in Independence National Historical Park.

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archaeologymag
Dyottville Glass Factory archaeology is featured in this ARCHAEOLOGY MAGAZINE article entitled, Empire of Glass: An unusual industrial history emerges from some of the city’s hippest neighborhoods, by MARGARET SHAKESPEARE (February 2017).
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20140829_Libby__Mary_and_Kelly_Author_Photos_0243_becklund-Edit_copyThe Things We Treasure
This reflection on archaeology by Elizabeth Mosier was published in the News Currents section of the Philadelphia Inquireron Jan. 3, 2016. Mosier, who is a writer, volunteered in the Independence National Historical Park archeology lab helping to process artifacts recovered from the National Constitution Center site.
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sm01RLWBonnin and Morris Waste Bowl by Robert Hunter and Jeffrey Ray, Ceramics in America, Chipstone, 2007.
This article reports on a Bonnin and Morris slop or waste bowl excavated by archaeologist Barbara Liggett in New Market, Philadelphia, the area east of Second Street and between Pine and South streets about 1980.
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FEATURED NEW BOOK
FirstPennsylvaniansCover_medium
First Pennsylvanians: The Archaeology of Native Americans in Pennsylvania
By Kurt W. Carr, PhD, Senior Curator of Archaeology at The State Museum of Pennsylvania, and Roger W. Moeller, PhD

In First Pennsylvanians, Kurt Carr and Roger Moeller provide a broad, accessible, and wide-ranging overview of the archaeological record of Native Americans in Pennsylvania from early prehistory through the Paleoindian, Archaic, Transitional, Woodland, and Contact periods, stretching from 16,500 years ago to 1750 c.e. The authors present and analyze specific traits of each archaeological time period covered and use the archaeological record to provide a glimpse of Native Americans’ daily life in Pennsylvania. First Pennsylvanians also includes personal stories and anecdotes from archaeologists about their experiences in the field as well as a wealth of illustrations and diagrams. The chapters examine the environment, social groups, tools, subsistence, and settlements of patterns of Native Americans in Pennsylvania and describe how these factors profoundly affected the populations and cultures of these early inhabitants of the region.

256 pages, paperback; 124 color photos and illustrations. This Commonwealth of Pennsylvania publication can be purchased here…
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Historical Archaeology of the Delaware Valley, 1600-1850
Edited by Richard Veit and David Orr
2014 University of Tennessee Press
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The Delaware Valley is a distinct region situated within the Middle Atlantic states, encompassing portions of Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Maryland. With its cultural epicenter of Philadelphia, its surrounding bays and ports within Maryland and Delaware, and its conglomerate population of European settlers, Native Americans, and enslaved Africans, the Delaware Valley was one of the great cultural hearths of early America. The region felt the full brunt of the American Revolution, briefly served as the national capital in the post-Revolutionary period, and sheltered burgeoning industries amidst the growing pains of a young nation. Yet, despite these distinctions, the Delaware Valley has received less scholarly treatment than its colonial equals in New England and the Chesapeake region.

In Historical Archaeology of the Delaware Valley, 1600–1850, Richard Veit and David Orr bring together fifteen essays that represent the wide range of cultures, experiences, and industries that make this region distinctly American in its diversity. From historic-period American Indians living in a rapidly changing world to an archaeological portrait of Benjamin Franklin, from an eighteenth-century shipwreck to the archaeology of Quakerism, this volume highlights the vast array of research being conducted throughout the region. Many of these sites discussed are the locations of ongoing excavations, and archaeologists and historians alike continue to debate the region’s multifaceted identity.

The archaeological stories found within Historical Archeology of the Delaware Valley, 1600–1850 reflect the amalgamated heritage that many American regions experienced, though the Delaware Valley certainly exemplifies a richer experience than most: it even boasts the palatial home of a king (Joseph Bonaparte, elder brother of Napoleon and former King of Naples and Spain). This work, thoroughly based on careful archaeological examination, tells the stories of earlier generations in the Delaware Valley and makes the case that New England and the Chesapeake are not the only cultural centers of colonial America Vol. 25, 2006:77-92.
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“What’ll Thou Have”: Quakers and the Characterization of Tavern Sites in Colonial Philadelphia.
Neff's Tavern Independence Park Archaeology
In this article, John Chenoweth explores the roles of taverns in colonial America, drawing upon artifacts excavated in Independence National Historical Park at the site of the National Constitution Center. Northeast Historical Archaeology,
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Pioneer’s Life is Dug Up at Independence Hall: New Archaeological Approach Focuses on a Freed Slave
steThis article, by Stephan Salisbury, published in the African Diaspora Archaeology Newsletter in September 2005, is some of the earliest reporting on the archaeology of James Oronoko Dexter, whose home site was excavated in Independence National Historical Park.

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City Garden
Philadelphia-Bartram-Garden-Excavation-Snow bart
This article on the archaeology at Bartram’s Garden in Philadelphia was in the April, 2014 issue of Archaeology Magazine.
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Artifacts of Democracy:
Archaeology in the DNC Host City of Philadelphia

Slide7
This webpage of content was created as part of an archaeological outreach social media campaign activated during the period of the Democratic National Convention held in Philadelphia July 25-28, 2016. Learn about the selected artifacts of Democracy here…
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The President’s House in Philadelphia: Liberty, Slavery, and the Creation of a New Nation

The President’s House à Philadelphie : la liberté, l’esclavage, et la création d’une nouvelle nation Publié le vendredi 20 avril 2012 · Mis à jour le vendredi 1 juin 2012, Archéologie de l’esclavage colonial. Par Jed Levin, musée d’archéologie et d’anthropologie de l’université de Pennsylvanie.
In English (second option shown) and French (first option, dubbed). Presentation by Jed Levin on the President’s House site given in Paris, France in May of 2012. Levin was invited to present the research as part of a conference on the archaeology of colonial slavery. The conference was convened in recognition of the 200th anniversary of the abolition of slavery in France. (21 minutes, 28 seconds)
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This Week in Pennsylvania — Dyottville Glassworks

This article, a posting of The State Museum of Pennsylvania/Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission’s “This Week in Pennsylvania Archaeology” blog, discusses the excavations at the Dyottville Glassworks in Philadelphia.
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A Biography of Paul Schumacher

This article chronicles the history of an important Philadelphia archaeologist. The article was written by Karen Swope as a Society for Historical Archaeology Liaison Report to the Society for California Archaeology (Vol. 47, Issue 3, 2013).
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Independence NHP Welcomes Australian Churchill Fellow Louise Zarmati


Australian Churchill Fellow Louise Zarmati visit to Philadelphia in the summer of 2013 is explained in this Independence Park Quarterly Newsletter article. Dr. Zarmati’s research focuses on how archaeology is used to teach national history.

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This Week in Pennsylvania Archaeology — Philadelphia County

This June 28, 2013 blog posting summarizing the archaeology of Philadelphia County is by The State Museum of Pennsylvania/Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
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Public Historical Archaeology in the Mid-Atlantic Region

This July 2012 post by Rebecca Yamin was written for the M.A.R.C.H. (Mid Atlantic Regional Center for the Humanities at Rutgers University, Camden) blog Promoting Collaboration and Innovation in Public Humanities.
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Interstate I-95 Artifacts Showcased in Philadelphia

Write up of the exhibit at the Independence Seaport Museum by the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation’s Gene Blaum (Public Relations, District 6) in E-PennDot Digest, April/May 2013. PDF — scroll to page 9.
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British Redoubt No. 1 — Archaeology at Point Pleasant

Chevaux-de-frize recovered from the Delaware River


2008. A discussion about whether further archeology at the site of the proposed SugarHouse Casino might help reveal the location of British Redoubt [fort] No.1. Compiled by Torben Jenk with contributions from Denis Cooke, Ken Milano, Rich Remer, Hal Schirmer, Dr. Robert Selig & others. Hosted at the Oliver Evans Chapter of the Society for Industrial Archaeology web page, Workshop Of The World — A Selective Guide to the Industrial Archeology of Philadelphia.
Click here…
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lovelyDigging Our Past
The Philadelphia Women’s Journal. Oct/Nov 2008:27

The activities of several female archaeologists are featured in this article published in a Philadelphia monthly in 2008. The article, by Patrice L. Jeppson, highlights talk being presented at the 2008 “Explore Philly’s Buried Past” archaeology month celebration.
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Black History Showcase Features African American Archaeology This report by Patrice L. Jeppson was published in the July 2010 issue of the African Diaspora Archaeology Newsletter. It reports on an exhibit of Philadelphia-area African American archaeology that was presented in March as part of the annual Black History Month Showcase at the Convention Center.
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2010 CU Participation in the 7th Annual Black History Showcase
(scroll to page 2)Vital Communications, Cheyney University newsletter, 3(4):2, April.
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2006 Independence NHP Archeology at Franklin Court. This summary on the archaeological assessment done for the Benjamin Franklin Tercentenary was written by Patrice L. Jeppson for NPS Archeology in Parks collumn of the NPS Archaeology E-gram.
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2007 The Archaeology of Freedom and Slavery at the President’s House, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. This brief report by Patrice L. Jeppson was published in the July 2007 issue of the African Diaspora Archaeology Newsletter.
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1960 Digging an Historical Shrine: Philadelphia’s Independence Park [PDF format]. This 1960 article by John L. Cotter was published in Expedition, the Magazine of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Volume 2(3), Pages 28-32.
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2005 What was there before the Museum? [PDF format]. Ann Blair Brownlee wrote this article about the site of the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. It was published in Expedition, the Magazine of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology in 2005. Volume 47, Number 1.
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2003 Out of Heaviness, Enlightenment: NAGPRA and the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology [PDF format]. This 2003 article by Robert W. Preucel, Lucy F. Williams, Stacey O. Espenlaub and Janet Monge discusses the return to Native Americans of artifacts held in the collections of the University of Pennsylvania’s Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. This article was published in Expedition, the Magazine of the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. Volume 45(3), Pages 21-27.
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2007 Digging Up the Past: An Exhibit Review [PDF format]. This review presents an archaeological perspective on the First African Baptist Church Burial Grounds exhibit at the African American Museum of Philadelphia (AAMP). Written by historical archaeologist Patrice L. Jeppson, it was published in the September 2007 issue of the African Diaspora Archaeology Newsletter.
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1996 Engaging the Public Through Mortuary Archeology: Philadelphia’s First African Baptist Church Cemeteries [PDF format]. This article by physical anthropologist Thomas A. J. Crist and archaeologist Daniel G. Roberts was published in 1996 in the government publication, CRM (No. 10 — 1996, Vol. 9, pages 5-7).
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2012 Public Archaeology Via Skyscraper: Outcome and Experience
Patrice L. Jeppson(1), Glen Muschio(2), Hannah Winograd(2),(3), Matthew Haas(2),(3), Geoffrey Oxholm(4), and Ko Nishino(4)
[1) Philadelphia Archaeological Forum; 2) Digital Media Program, College of Media Arts and Design, Drexel University; 3) STAR Fellowship Program, Pennoni Honors College, Drexel University; 4) Drexel University Computer Science Department; The 3D Colonial Philadelphia Project − Digital Restoration of Thin-Shell Objects for Historical Archeological Research and Interpretation (National Science Foundation IIS Grant 0803670)] A recent archaeology awareness campaign projected Public Service Announcements from the top of a Philadelphia city skyscraper — the PECO Building. These 30-second videos featured animated 3D artifact reconstructions alongside an archaeology-themed message. The videos were made by Drexel University students using Drexel University computer vision research data. This paper shows how communities make use of the past for their own needs in the present. Keywords: new media and archaeology, computational archaeology, convergence theory, dialogic public archaeology. In Online Journal in Public Archaeology, 2012(2):55-80.
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1998 Plates in Graves: An Africanism? Archaeologist John P. McCarthy prepared these comments for a panel discussion entitled ‘Lessons from Historic Period Cemeteries’. It includes data on Philadelphia’s First African Baptist Church Cemeteries. The talk was held at the 1998 Meeting of the Society for Historical Archaeology, Atlanta.
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1981 Medical Archaeology in Philadelphia: A Study of Early Twentieth Century Medicine Bottles Excavated at Bartram’s Garden [PDF format] by Michael Parrington, 1981, Volume 23(3), Pages 34-38.
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1986 Acculturation in an Urban Setting: The Archaeology of a Black Philadelphia Cemetery” [PDF format, 4.3MB], by Michael Parrington; Janet Wideman, 1986, Volume 28(1), Pages 55-62.
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2010
Digging in the City of Brotherly Love, Stories from Philadelphia Archaeology.
By Rebecca Yamin. Yale University Press, New Haven, 2008.

Winner of the Society for American Archaeology 2010 prize for the best book in the public audience category, Digging in the City of Brotherly Love brings to life both Philadelphians from the past discovered through archaeology and the archaeologists in the present who tell their stories. Taking up where The Buried Past left off, Digging describes the archaeological projects conducted during the redevelopment of Independence Mall in the late 1990s and the results of analyzing the thousands of artifacts that belonged to the people who lived and worked there in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Among the residents were bureaucrats in the federal government when it was seated in Philadelphia and African Americans involved in the founding of St. Thomas’s African Episcopal Church. In the eighteenth century the blocks buzzed with workers — coachmakers and cabinetmakers, butchers and bakers — and in the nineteenth century there were merchants who would become the city’s middle class. The story of the enslaved members of George Washington’s household is told and so is the story of the struggle that led to the memorial now standing on the site. The book also covers some landmark archaeological projects from the past including the excavation of two burial grounds belonging to the First African Baptist Church and the uncovering of a slipway used for repairing boats on the shore of the Delaware River. Digging in the City of Brotherly Love is an overview of archaeological research in Philadelphia and it is also an introduction to urban archaeology — to the methods used to make and interpret the finds and to the politics that surround the projects. Available in hardback and as an ebook.

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2007 Witness to the Past: The Life and Works of John L. Cotter
Philadelphia was home to John L. Cotter, a leader in the field of archaeology who is often thought of as a role model for current and future archaeologists. Cotter worked for the National Park Service in Philadelphia and at the University of Pennsylvania. He conducted and supervised archaeological research across the nation as well as here in the city, including within Independence Park. Cotter’s life story mirrors the development of 20th century American archaeology. This 2007 book gathers together a large number of his popular and scholarly works on Native American and Colonial American archaeology. An entire section of the book is devoted to Philadelphia Urban Archaeology. Also included are Cotter’s writings about the importance of educating the public about archaeology and his reflections about working as an archaeologist during the Depression, about being a retired archaeologist, and of ‘being there at the beginning’ as a pioneer breaking new ground. Tributes and memorials submitted by his colleagues and by students he mentored summarize and analyze Cotter’s contributions to the discipline. A vast bibliography of his works is provided that includes unpublished reports and manuscripts in the John Cotter Papers and Collections archived at Independence National Historical Park and at the University Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology at the University of Pennsylvania.

This informative and inspirational book was edited by archaeologists Daniel D. Roberts and David G. Orr. Its production was supported and promoted by the Philadelphia Archaeological Forum (PAF) which is dedicated to the protection and preservation of archaeological resources in the City of Philadelphia. Published by The Society for American Archaeology in cooperation with The Society for Historical Archaeology (ISBN: 0-932839-31-2 ), this volume is available for purchase at SAA Press.
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1992 The Buried Past: An Archaeological History of Philadelphia. Edited by John L. Cotter, et al. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, c1992. 524 pages ISBN-10: 0812231422 ISBN-13: 978-0812231427 The ‘bible’ of Philadelphia archaeology.
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2003 Philadelphia and the Development of Americanist Archaeology. Edited by Don D. Fowler and David R. Wilcox. University of Alabama Press, Hardcover: 240 pages ISBN-10: 0817313117 ISBN-13: 978-0817313111 (also available in paperback)
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2007 [1990] Workshop Of The World — A Selective Guide to the Industrial Archeology of Philadelphia. Oliver Evans Press, 1990; adapted for the internet in 2007. This 1990 guidebook, created by members of the Oliver Evans Chapter of the Society for Industrial Archeology (SIA) was recently reissued in cyberspace. At this new set of web pages, a sampling of the City of Philadelphia’s industrial history is examined neighborhood by neighborhood. The sites included were selected based on three criteria: their cultural significance (historical, architectural, engineering, and or industrial reasons), their representation of the industries prominent to a specific neighborhood, or their status vis a vis imminent danger of demolition or collapse. Each chapter provides a discussion of the history and development of the neighborhood company, a discussion of its extant buildings and structures, and a discussion of the technologies, processes, and machines that survive in place at www.workshopoftheworld.com .
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The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly:
Bioarchaeology and the Modern Gun Culture Debate

[*PAGES 118-119 of which report and analyze gunshot victims in the Philadelphia archaeological record, namely ca. 1750–1799 burials at the Second Presbyterian Church Burial Ground excavated during construction of the National Constitution Center and from the First African Baptist Church Burial Ground, dating between ca. 1810 and 1822, discovered in the 1990’s during construction of the Vine Street Expressway.
By Thomas A. Crist
Historical Archaeology, 2006, 40(3):109–130.

In this article, Crist considers “personal gun ownership during the early history of what is now the United States that lies at the root of the modern argument between supporters of gun control and those whose interpretation of the Second Amendment endows private citizens with the right to keep and bear arms”. Using historical evidence, including from early burials in Philadelphia, he shows that with growing gun ownership, during and after the 1830s, “an ever-increasing number of homicides (have) resulted from gunfire, particularly in the large cities” (Crist, HISTORICAL ARCHAEOLOGY 40(3):126.

Dr. Thomas A. Crist, Professor of Anthropology and Anatomy at Utica College in Utica, NY, has conducted several studies in Philadelphia.

Dr. Thomas A. Crist. Professor of Anthropology and Anatomy at Utica College in Utica, NY, has conducted several studies in Philadelphia.

Previously Director of Archaeological Services at Kise Straw & Kolodner Inc. in Philadelphia and now a consultant to AECOM Corporation, Dr. Crist has served since 1990 as the Forensic Anthropologist for the Philadelphia Medical Examiner’s Office. He is a member of the U.S. Public Health Service’s Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team (DMORT) and served two deployments assisting in the recovery and identification of victims from the World Trade Center attacks in 2001. Since 1992, Dr. Crist has been an Adjunct Professor at the School of Dental Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, where he co-teaches an annual short course in Forensic Dentistry and Anthropology every spring. In 1994, Dr. Crist was one of three co-founders of the American Academy of Forensic Science’s Young Forensic Scientists Forum and served as the group’s first secretary.

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FEATURED TALK
The Creation of I-95 in Philadelphia and the Rise of Historical Archaeology: Or, How I Stopped Worrying about Classicism and Loved the Sherd
Temple University’s Dr. David Orr discussed the history of 1970’s-era Philadelphia archaeology during this October 2012 Archaeology Month talk presented at Explore Philly’s Buried Past, 2012. Read the text of Dr. Orr’s presentation here…
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