Hello, readers! My name is Nadia and I’m Strawbery Banke’s archaeology intern for summer 2014. Since I’m going to be updating the blog pretty frequently for the rest of the summer, I thought it would be a good idea to introduce myself.
I got my B.A. in anthropology from Adelphi University in Garden City, NY in 2011. Now I’m finishing up my Master’s thesis in historical archaeology at the University of Massachusetts Boston. My focus is a site on Shelter Island way out at the eastern end of Long Island, NY called Sylvester Manor. I’m studying the assemblage of personal adornment artifacts (buttons, buckles, jewelry, etc.) from the period between 1652 and 1735 to see how individuals at the site expressed identity including ethnicity through the things they wore. The occupants of the site were diverse and included the Anglo-Dutch Sylvester family, indentured servants from England or Ireland, enslaved African people likely transported to the island from the Caribbean, and Native American day laborers from the local Manhanset community that had been occupying Shelter Island long before it was ever settled by Europeans.
Our focus for the Strawbery Banke field school is quite different as you all know, but I’m very excited to participate in the excavation of a more modern site. One of my favorite things about historical archaeology is the endless diversity of sites and stories to be explored. This is especially important when it comes to populations that are not well represented in written history, from enslaved Africans to immigrant families. I’m sure the site of the Pecunies house has some surprises for us to uncover and I’m looking forward to sharing those with all of you through this blog. Be on the lookout for more updates soon!