44FQ0140 Fauquier Co.VA

Archaeology · Architectural History · Preservation Planning

Working for Delta Airport Consultants and in support of the regional airport’s proposed T-hangar construction, CCR completed the archaeological evaluation of Site 44FQ0140 in 2012.  The testing included hand excavation in a 1.25-acre wooded parcel as well as mechanical stripping within a partially disturbed 0.5-acre parcel. The purpose of the project was to assess the significance of a nineteenth-century domestic component and to investigate the potential presence of a family burial plot.

Additional archival research and intensive soil stripping revealed no evidence of a burial plot within the project area; however, during backhoe stripping in an area that had been previously somewhat graded, the partial remains of a stone-lined cellar were uncovered.  The bottom course of stones from the northwest and northeast cellar walls was uncovered and had apparently survived the previous earthmoving activities.  The presence of a French drain verified that the stones were part of a cellar rather than low stone footings.

Approximately 200 domestic artifacts were recovered during the evaluation, and these suggested a potential occupation range from the 1740s to the 1850s.  However, no features or in situ material were found in association with the documented foundation and drain elements of the site, making the potential for additional significant information low.  Documentary research established that the site was occupied during the first half of the nineteenth century by members of the Pilcher family and also suggested abandonment of the dwelling sometime around the 1850s, which is consistent with the date range suggested by the artifacts.