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More than Fill: Using GIS and Historical Documents in Urban Archaeology [Foundational Skills]

Urban Archaeology, or archaeology within a highly developed city, presents a number of unique challenges compared to archaeology that happens in open, presently rural areas. Although urban archaeology adds additional requirements for safety and logistic issues, it also presents archaeologists with a large amount of useful information in the form of historical maps, photographs, census data, newspaper articles, etc. that help create a picture of who was living within a project area and when. Historic maps in particular can be used for GIS analysis to determine how much the landscape has changed over time. This can help in decisions about the appropriate survey type to determine if cultural materials are present within a project area. This presentation will focus on the Barry Farm neighborhood in Washington, D.C. as a case study.