Hampden Heritage

Archaeology, History, and Heritage in Central Baltimore

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Workshop Tomorrow!

Just a quick reminder that the Workshop on Material Culture is tomorrow, April 22nd, at 7 pm at the Roosevelt Recreation Center in Hampden. All of the details are in the flyer from the previous post.
Come out and see some of what was uncovered at the five sites excavated in Hampden and learn about what happens after excavations. Everything depicted on the blog over the last few weeks will be at the workshop so come out and see these artifacts and more!


Friday, April 17, 2009

Material Culture Workshop Wednesday

Here is a copy of the flyer for the workshop we will be holding this Wednesday at 7 pm at the Roosevelt Recreation Center in Hampden. Stop by to see some of the artifacts you've seen on the blog and others while learning about the complete archaeological process and the Hampden project.
We hope to see you there!


Monday, April 13, 2009

A Different Type of Artifact

Above is a small plaque that would have been attached to a house that had a mortgage. The plaque was a way for the City Trust and Banking Company to advertise. This is similar to the small plastic signs landscapers and other companies often require homeowners to place in their yard after completing some service for them. The above plaque is just a little more subtle.

Monday, April 06, 2009

Spring Walking Tour of Hampden

Hi Folks,

Its Maryland Archaeology Month! I'll be leading another history and archaeology tour of Hampden beginning at 10:00 AM on Saturday April 11. Details below:

Tour: Archaeology Walking Tour of Hampden

Description: A 1-2 hour walking tour of Hampden, Baltimore's "Mill Village in an Urban Setting." Participants will tour the neighborhood's archaeological and historic sites, learning about the historical development of the industrial landscape, as well as HCAP's efforts to engage the community through archaeology. The tour will conclude in Hampden's 36th Street shopping district, where participants will be able to enjoy the neighborhood's eclectic assortment of retail establishments and restaurants. Participants should be able to negotiate moderately steep hills and moderately difficult on- or off- pavement terrain. Comfortable walking shoes a must.

Sponsor: The University of Maryland's Center for Heritage Resource Studies, and the Hampden Community Archaeology Project

Location: Tour begins at Roosevelt Recreation Center at 1121 W. 36th Street.

Time: 10:00 AM

Fee: Free

Contact: David Gadsby. More information can be found at: www.hampdenheritage.blogspot.com or at the Center for Heritage Resource Studies Website

Sunday, April 05, 2009

Name that Artifact

One of the more interesting items uncovered on Falls Road is a mystery item. I've done some internet searches, but I haven't found anything that matches what we have so I'm hoping someone out there knows what this is. If you do, please leave a comment!

The first picture is to provide the scale so you can see how small the face is in reality. The second provides a better shot of the face. It's a piece of darkly glazed stoneware and the poor guy is missing large chunks of his face. Hopefully someone recognizes him anyway.


Friday, April 03, 2009


Quite a few toys were found at the various sites in Hampden. These range from more recent army men to clay marbles. Below are some interesting porcelain pieces with which some little girl in Hampden once played. Be sure to note their size as both items are quite small.

This is the head of a Frozen Charlotte doll. These dolls were small, solid items with no movable limbs. If you go to the following site and scroll down just a little, you can see a complete doll with some information about the history of the doll.

Above is half of a toy porcelain saucer. This could have been part of a toy tea set.

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Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Post-Excavation Artifacts


My name is Abbie and I am a graduate student at the University of Maryland. I have been interning with the Hampden project for approximately the last year. I and some undergraduates here at the University of Maryland have been working on washing, bagging, cataloging, and labeling the artifacts uncovered at the five sites in Hampden. This work has to be done after the excavation in order to prepare the collection for storage. As evidenced by the list of tasks that need to be done, the bulk of archaeological work actually takes place in the lab after the excavation.

As we wrap up this portion of the project, I wanted to share some of the artifacts with you. I will be posting various pictures over the next few weeks to lead up to a community workshop to be held April 22nd at the Roosevelt Rec Center in Hampden. The workshop will be at 7 pm and will allow you to see a sample of the artifacts from the various sites in person.

In working with the project, I have seen pretty much every artifact, which includes everything from bricks and coal to plastic army men and buttons. I have enjoyed seeing it all, but I am assisting with an analysis of the ceramics specifically. Due to this, I am going to start out with pictures of some of my favorite ceramic sherds from the primary Falls Road site.

This picture shows some lovely hand-painted whiteware sherds. If you look closely, you can see that these two portions of a tea cup are actually multiple sherds that have been mended.

In contrast to the decorated whiteware tea cup above is this plainer ironstone cup, which was most likely a local piece as there appears to be a matching plate that has a Baltimore stamp on the base.

Please check back between now and April 22nd as I share more images. I will also be posting a few images of items you might be able to help us identify. If you have information about any of the items pictured, please let us know in the comments section. Thank you.