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Rappahannock Landing Archaeological Survey ... - Fauquier County

Rappahannock Landing Archaeological Survey ... - Fauquier County

In addition to the

In addition to the isolated material remains recovered from shovel tests, several individual artifacts were also found during the metal detector work across the project area (Table 5). Although several of the detector finds were associated with sites 44FQ0225 and 44FQ0224, eight artifacts were not found near the boundaries of these sites or within a relative proximity to other artifacts. Because of this, these hits were also classified as isolated occurrences and not as part of the defined archaeological sites. Most of the materials found during the survey are likely tangentially associated with the Battle of Rappahannock Station, but because they were not found in association with other artifacts or in intact subsurface deposits, they can only tell a limited amount about Civil War activity in the area. No additional archaeological work is recommended at the locations of the isolated finds or the individual metal detector recoveries. Table 5: Isolated Artifacts Recovered from Metal Detecting. Artifact Count Percentage Hitch 1 12.5% Copper Plated Finial Furniture Fragment 1 12.5% Cast Iron Kettle Rim Fragment 1 12.5% 58-caliber Yankee Bullet 1 12.5% Square Nut 1 12.5% Ball for model 1841 smoothbore .54 caliber T&T 127 & 128, M&M 555 series 1 12.5% Melted Bullet 1 12.5% Buckle 1 12.5% Total 8 100% In addition to isolated finds, the archaeologists examined a pond on the west side of the property to determine the origins of the pond creation. According to local tradition, the pond could have been partially formed using earthworks left over from the Civil War. An inspection of the pond materials and construction methods, however, suggests that the berm was created through the excavation of the pond itself. This formation method is very typical for cattle/agricultural ponds created in the first half of the twentieth century, where earth removed to create the ponds depth was piled in a circle around the newlyformed hole. This action then created berms that also helped to hold water for use in areas used for agriculture and husbandry. Therefore, it is recommended that the pond was created for farm use rather than as a military earthwork during the Civil War. 39

SUMMARY AND RECOMMENDATIONS On behalf of the FCDPR, Dovetail conducted a Phase I archaeological survey of the 23 acre Rappahannock Landing project area located in Fauquier County, Virginia in May and June 2006. The project area is located 167.6 meters (550 feet) north of the Rappahannock River, 121.9 meters (400 feet) east of Business Route 15/29, 274.3 meters (900 feet) west of Route 15/29, and 182.9 meters (600 feet) south of west Main Street. The survey included an examination of approximately 6.07 hectares (15 acres) through surface observation, excavation of shovel test pits and metal detecting. The goal of the survey was to identify any archaeological remains from the Battle at Rappahannock Station and make recommendations on the need for any subsurface investigations. Archival research shows that the area is part of both the first and second Battles of Rappahannock Station. During the research, it was found that most of the original core of the battlefield has been destroyed by residential and commercial development, though much of the surrounding land has not changed since the time of the battles. The original Orange and Alexandria Railroad bridge support structures remain. Several small earthworks are still visible near the site of one of the forts at the head of the old railroad bridge. Two archaeological sites, four isolated finds, and eight metal detector hits were identified during this survey. 44FQ0225 is a third quarter of the nineteenth century site likely associated with the Battle of Rappahannock Station. The site measures approximately 53.34 meters (175 feet) north/south by 45.72 meters (150 feet) east/west and is situated in the central portion of the project area. The current survey recovered nine artifacts from this site, which include green wine bottle glass, nails, and a whole Colt Pocket Pistol bullet. This site is recommended as Not Eligible for the NRHP (Table 6). 44FQ0224 is a third quarter of the nineteenth century historic site also likely associated with the Battle of Rappahannock Station. The site measures approximately 106.7 meters (350 feet) southeast/northwest by 22.86 meters (75 feet) north/south and is situated in the southwestern portion of the project area. The current survey recovered 78 artifacts from this site. Some of these include a 58-caliber Yankee bullet, machine cut nail fragments, lime soda container glass, a rusted cast iron fragment, porcelain, and a copper-plated finial fragment (possibly from a piece of furniture). In addition, a moderate amount of hand-made brick bats were visible on the surface within the site boundaries. This site is recommended potentially eligible for the NRHP. Table 6: Summary of Eligibility Recommendations. DHR # Description NRHP Eligibility 44FQ0224 Military Battle/Camp site Recommended Eligible 44FQ0225 Military Battle Site Recommended Not Eligible 40

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