On July 30th and 31st, the archaeologists at Historic St. Mary’s City will be celebrating the 29th annual Tidewater Archaeology Days. Tour excavations at the home of Maryland’s first governor, Leonard Calvert, and discover what the soil reveals about Maryland’s beginnings then help screen excavated material and see what bits of the past you recover. Meet the new Chief Archaeologist, Travis Parno, as he and the archaeology students help you interpret the stories of the past that each piece tells. An exhibit of artifacts recovered from the site will be on display.
There will be special tours throughout the day. At 11:00, 1:00, 2:30, or 4:00, enjoy a once-a-year opportunity to tour the archaeology laboratory with the Curator of Collections and Archaeological Laboratory Director, Silas Hurry. This year, for the first time, the tours will feature the new archaeological laboratories and curation space, located on the campus of St. Mary’s College adjacent to the parking lot for Farthing’s and the State House. Discover what happens to artifacts after they are unearthed and see the unique care the new facility will provide for these remnants of Maryland’s past. At 11:00, join Research Director Henry Miller for a special tour of the Brick Chapel, including the opportunity to see the lead coffins in their permanent home beneath the floor of the chapel. In the afternoon at 3:00, take a break in the air-conditioned St. John’s Site Museum, where Dr. Miller will guide you through this unique exhibit. Space is limited for all of these tours, so be sure to sign up at the Visitor Center (18751 Hogaboom Lane, St. Mary’s City) when you arrive. Also, throughout the day, special kid activities are planned.
The excavations will be open from 10 a.m. – 4 p.m. on Saturday and Sunday. Admission ($10 adult; $9 seniors; $6 youth (6-18); and free for those 5 years and younger and Friends members) includes access to special activities, living history sites, and the St. John’s Site Museum.
Historic St. Mary’s City is a museum of living history and archaeology on the site of Maryland’s first capital in beautiful, tidewater Southern Maryland. For more information about this program or the museum, contact the Visitor Center at 240-895-4990, 800-SMC-1634, or info@HSMCdigshistory.org.