Archaeological Collection Returns from Monticello

Andrew Jackson’s Hermitage Collections team recently returned from Thomas Jefferson’s Monticello with nearly 300 boxes of archaeological artifacts that have now been fully cataloged. In 2009, a grant-funded partnership allowed The Hermitage to send thousands of artifacts to the Digital Archaeological Archive of Comparative Slavery (DAACS), based at Monticello. These artifacts were discovered during archaeological digs in and around the Triplex, Field Quarter and First Hermitage that took place between the 1970s and early 2000s. DAACS has been fully cataloging all the excavated archaeological material related to the enslaved people at The Hermitage. Some of that data and information is available on the DAACS website, with the rest coming soon.

All the materials were housed in archival bags and stored in acid-free boxes. In October, Jennifer Schmidt, Collections Manager, and Raechel Willis, Curatorial Aide, loaded 265 boxes in a moving truck and safely secured them before making the drive back to The Hermitage.

Raechel Willis and Jennifer Schmidt at Monticello before returning to The Hermitage with archaeological collection.

Approximately 265 boxes were loaded into a moving truck and driven from Monticello to The Hermitage.

In total, The Hermitage has approximately 400 boxes of DAACS cataloged archaeological material that provides invaluable evidence about the people enslaved at The Hermitage, which will enable the site to better and more deeply interpret and tell the stories of their lives.