This week we continued our excavation of the topsoil of trenches QG5 and QG6. It was a beautiful day, and we worked productively.

Before doing anything else, we cleared out mounds of sod that were still by the trenches. This was in preparation for Brown’s 250th anniversary celebration events on the Quiet Green.

Our end-of-day shot for trench QG5.

Our end-of-day shot for trench QG5.

In trench 5, we cleared away almost all of the topsoil of context 1. A context is a unit of archaeological measurement used to understand past events at a site. It can be anything from a layer of a certain kind of soil, to a pit cut into the ground, to any sort of architectural structure. The idea is that by telling the differences and physical relationship between contexts one can tell the rough chronology of what happened to the land. Context 2, the context beneath context 1, seems to be made of compacted yellow clay. It was difficult to perceive where exactly the boundary between the two contexts was, as there were clumps of clay interspersed in the edge of context 1’s brown, less heavy soil. We spent most of our time carefully trying to dig down enough but not too far. The soil we sifted with a sieve gave no finds, but we did find a green-glazed ceramic sherd while digging.

Trench 6 was full of roots, so we focused on getting those out of the way with shears and digging where we could with picks and trowels. It was slow and hard going, and context 1 is still the only visible context in trench 6. However, we did get a lot of soil out of the way in the process, and in sifting we found several pieces of glass, plastic, and ceramic, both brick and green-glazed. We also found a small monogrammed metal pin with the initials “LPG” engraved on its front. Catherine told us that the style of these kinds of monograms calls for the middle initial to be read first, followed by the left and right initials. According to this style, the correct initials of the pin read “LGP.”

Raffaele Gans-Pfister ’16