A Successful Field School Summer

The 2010 University of Connecticut Battlefield Archaeology Field School has come to an end, and a successful summer it was!

Nine university students from six states, as far as Iowa, migrated to Mystic, Connecticut and to the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center for eight weeks. During one of the hottest New England summers on record, these students learned battlefield archaeological methods, traditional archaeological methods and were taught about the cultural and historical significance of the Pequot War. The students excavated at two sites of the Battle of Mystic Fort, one at Porter’s Rocks, known as the evening encampment  previous to the early morning attack at Mystic Fort, and at Mystic Fort itself.

Field School students learn how to measure a datum point out in the field, at the site of Mystic Fort.

The Field School students also had the opportunity to visit Windsor, Connecticut and the  Windsor Historical Society, the John Mason Monument on the town’s historic Palisado Green and observe Ground Penetrating Radar (GPR) with Connecticut State Archaeologist Nicholas Bellantoni.

Students also spent a day touring Block Island and assisted the Block Island Historical Society in the opening of a new historical exhibit. They visited the site of Crescent Beach, the site of the first action of the Pequot War. At Crescent Beach in late August 1636, a force of ninety soldiers (who launched as expedition against the Manisses, the Native group of Block Island) landed at Block Island, the first recorded amphibious assault in the New World. Artifacts found among Crescent Beach have shown evidence of both the English landing and the assault on the Manisses.

Field School Students with Dr. Kevin McBride pose for a picture at the Southeast Light on Block Island.