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College students go high-tech to learn about Native Americans on Shore

August 28, 2015

Often, when one thinks of an archaeological survey, the image is of teams of people with shovels and sifters carefully digging into the ground to see what they can find.

In a field on the Queen Anne’s County side of the Chester River north of Centreville, an archaeological team has been working this summer with high-tech equipment to see what’s in the ground. Depending on what they find, the shovels will come later.

The project is led by Dr. Julie Markin, assistant professor of anthropology at Washington College, who is trying to learn more about the Native Americans who lived on this part of the Eastern Shore hundreds of years ago.

“No solid leads yet, but some good clues. They were definitely on this river,” she said, looking over a clearing where two of her undergraduate students were gathering data. Noting that Native Americans predated European settlers by thousands of years, Markin and her team are focusing on a time period roughly from 900 A.D. to the 1400s and 1600s.