Archaeological Field Session at a Prehistoric Village Site

JUNE 28, 29, 30 and JULY 1, 2017 (9a-3p daily)



During the spring and summer of 2016, Anne Arundel County partnered with the State of Maryland, the Archaeological Society of Maryland and the Lost Towns Project to investigate a Native American VillaFeature_RiverFarmge Site located at Jug Bay Wetlands Sanctuary. Over the course of 15 days, over 100 people, most of them volunteers excavated 36 test units, found 18 features, and recovered thousands of artifacts that span at least 10,000 years of human history on the shores of the Patuxent River.

Jug Bay is one of the largest freshwater wetlands on the East Coast and is tremendously rich in natural and cultural resources. This stretch of the Patuxent River has long been known as a hotbed of Native American activity. Nearly 25 archaeological sites have been recorded in the area, including base camps, resource procurement camps, and ritual areas, which span at least 12,000 years, or nearly the entire length of human existence in Maryland. Perhaps the most significant of these sites is Pig Point (18AN50). The Pig Point archaeological site is located on private property about one mile up the Patuxent River from River Farm and was excavated between 2009 and 2014. Nearly 700,000 artifacts were recovered from Pig Point, along with hundreds of features situated within a seven foot thick stratigraphic column. To expand of the area around Pig Point, archaeologists began work at River Farm in 2015. Three areas were excavated during 2015-2016: Area 1, located in the southern end of the floodplain, contained a Late Woodland period feasting midden, area 2 was located just to the north of the midden and contained several features were found radiating out of this cultural level, including hearths and large posts and, area 3 located in the northern extents of the floodplain, where a more prominent Early Woodland and Late Archaic component was found.

Now we’re headed back, and we need your help to discover more!

Join the Lost Towns Project for this real-world archaeological dig, where you will work alongside professional archaeologists and help us discover the mystery of this rare prehistoric house site right here in Anne Arundel County, MD.

No experience required, and we’ll give you “On the Job Training”.

Reservations are required for this special program, and the max number of participants each day is capped at 12 to ensure the quality of the scientific work. Daily cost for this program is $20 per person. Sign on for all four days for the discounted program fee of $55 for the entire session.

Participants must be at least 12 years old.
Children under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

If you or your child has a physical or mental condition that would limit his or her participation in our program and you believe we can accommodate the needs of your child, please contact us at projects@losttownsproject.org to request special accommodations.

By registering yourself or your children for this event, you indicate that you agree to release and discharge Anne Arundel County, the Lost Towns Project, Inc. its employees, and agents from any injuries sustained by your child or yourself as a result of participation in this program. You will agree to indemnify and hold harmless Anne Arundel County, the Lost Towns Project, its employees, and agents against any liability incurred as a result of such injury or loss. It is understood and agreed that Anne Arundel County, the Lost Towns Project, its employees, and agents cannot be responsible for any aggravation or injury caused as a result of a pre-existing disability, including but not limited to allergies. You must notify us of any such disabilities or sensitivities in writing prior to enrolling in this program.

*Participant may at some time be photographed for use by Anne Arundel County for publicity purposes.