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Museum to start archeological dig on newly donated land

today03/20/2023 33

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EASTON, Md. (AP) — The Academy Art Museum has acquired the properties at 106, 108 and 110 Talbot Lane for the creation of an annex, thanks to a generous donation by AAM trustee Elizabeth “Diz” Hormel.

Land records and archeological studies have identified that the land was originally owned by Henny and James Freeman beginning in the 1780s. The Freemans were one of the earliest documented free Black landowning families in Easton.

Through the end of the month, the Ottery Group, a Maryland consulting firm that offers services in archeology, historic preservation and the environmental sciences, will conduct an archeological study that builds on three previous studies of the Freeman site led by University of Maryland Department of Anthropology researchers Mark Leone and Tracy Jenkins in 2017, 2018 and 2019.

Through rigorous testing, including ground-penetrating radar, shovel testing, and test unit and feature excavation, the UMD team collected approximately 20,000 artifacts. Based on the results of these investigations, it is likely that the site contains additional, well-preserved archeological deposits from the period of Henny and James Freeman’s ownership, from 1787 to 1828.

On March 29, community members are invited to the site to meet the archeologists and learn about their initial findings. AAM Director Sarah Jesse will also be on site to share the museum’s future plans.

Hormel’s gift is one of the largest in the Museum’s history.

Source: AP – All contents copyright 2023 Associated Press.  All rights reserved.

Written by: Editor

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