From Civil War Defenses of Washington to Fort Circle Parks: Making Community-Driven Archaeology Part of the Archaeology of Conflict Arsenal
Degree awarded: M.A. Anthropology. American University
Community-Driven Archaeology is an important tool in giving voice to marginalized groups and neighborhoods; it has the power to engage and inform communities of their past, as well as strengthen ties and stewardship to public lands, cultural resources and national heritage. It is a particularly effective approach when engaging contexts within which various groups interacted in times of crises. As components of the region's Civil War heritage the Civil War Defenses of Washington (CWDW) represent some of the more overt manifestations of conflict associated with the city. In addition to their original defensive character CWDW also have long associations within the African-American community, beginning with their construction and extending to the present day. Applying Community-Driven Archaeology to CWDW would allow us to examine a landscape created by the African-American community within the larger context of military use of land and resources in the city.