Dovetail Cultural Resource Group President and Principal Investigator Dr. Kerri Barile (left) and former Fredericksburg mayor Bill Beck (right) examine artifacts at the former site of Prince Hall Lodge on Sophia St. in Fredericksburg

Archaeology Work Begins Again at Riverfront Park

by | Jan 10, 2017 | Government

By Susan Larson. File photo copyright Robert A. Martin for Fredericksburg.Today

Archaeology work began again January 9, 2017, at the Riverfront Park site on Sophia Street in downtown Fredericksburg.

The city has hired Dovetail Cultural Resource Group to continue fieldwork and laboratory analysis on portions of what the city calls “the mound,” near the site of the former Prince Hall Lodge. Work is expected to last two weeks.

Dovetail located what they believe are Civil War-era human remains and thousands of historically significant artifacts from the archaeologically sensitive land that was excavated in October 2015, in what then City Manager Bev Cameron called “a really terrible miscommunication.”

Editor’s Note: Read more at Additional Human Remains, Thousands of Artifacts Recovered from Riverfront Park Site

“This work will serve to complete the archaeological excavation that was undertaken at the time of the demolition of the Prince Hall Lodge in the autumn of 2015,” City Manager Tim Baroody said. “The goal is to further explore the building foundations, back yard area, and Civil War trenches that were found during the earlier work.”

Any artifacts uncovered during this month’s work will be taken for laboratory analysis, and a final report prepared, Baroody said.

“The archaeological features we found during the initial dig tell us an incredible amount about Fredericksburg’s past,” said Dr. Kerri Barile, president of Dovetail. “Civil War soldiers didn’t just fight here, they convalesced here, mourned here, and some died here. We need to tell their story.”

The site work will be open to the public from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. each day. The sidewalk along the east side of Sophia Street will be closed during this period, so please plan accordingly.

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