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Archeology for Interpreters > 9. Use What You Know: Highlighted Case Study

What happens next?

[photo] Hooe Dependency Site uniquely contributes to our understanding 
                  of Manassas National Battlefield Park's cultural landscape. 
                  This photograph shows the Henry House and Civil War-period artillery 
                  at Manassas National Battlefield Park. (NPS)

Hooe Dependency Site uniquely contributes to our understanding of Manassas National Battlefield Park's cultural landscape. This photograph shows the Henry House and Civil War-period artillery at Manassas National Battlefield Park. (NPS)

Examination of the Hooe Dependency Site concluded in August 1999. The archeologists backfilled all excavation units and completed paperwork and photography. They cataloged and analyzed all artifacts and prepared them for long-term storage. The collection is now housed at the NPS National Capital Region's Museum Resource Center in Landover, Maryland and is available to researchers.

Archeological investigations suggest that the Hooe Dependency Site is potentially eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. This is based on five outstanding characteristics of the site:

The Hooe Dependency Site has high research potential. Further study of the site could shed light on the types of goods that were available to an enslaved field laborer household. Additional research could determine the quantity and forms of Colono Ware present at the site and how its distribution reflects its use. In addition, the comparison of this enslaved household's possessions would serve as a valuable comparison with other artifact assemblages from local slave sites. All such inquiries could contribute to our knowledge of how the site's occupants-who are often invisible in historical records-lived their daily lives.

Given the Hooe Dependency Site's potential eligibility to the National Register of Historic Places, its treatment must involve either avoidance and in situ preservation—the preferred alternative—or a full data recovery program (often referred to as Phase III mitigation). Utility companies hold the right-of-ways to the underground utilities located within the Hooe Dependency Site's boundaries. One of these lines runs through the densest concentration of materials at the site. Any digging activities by the utility companies responsible for these lines could severely damage the site. With the current right-of-way and conditions of the easement, no restrictions are in place to prevent such an impact. Unless the current easement can be relocated outside the Hooe Dependency Site boundaries without ground disturbing activities, the only option is for archeologists to conduct a Phase III program to excavate and document the site before it is destroyed. Future cooperation between National Park Service managers, utility companies, and the public will determine how the Hooe Dependency Site will be recognized, preserved, and interpreted among Manassas National Battlefield Park's many archeological resources.

Use What You Know

The What do Archeologists Do? section of this guide introduces you to treatments available for archeological resources. The What are Issues of Sensitivity? section discusses the importance of interpreting African American cultural traditions. The Cultural Resource Management (CRM) section explores laws, regulations and NPS policies regarding archeological resources as well as the National Register of Historic Places. Questions you may wish to consider as you plan to interpret treatment of the Hooe Dependency Site at Manassas National Battlefield Park are:

  • What difference does it make if an archeological site is eligible for nomination to the National Register of Historic Places?
  • What treatment options are available for archeological resources?
  • What other questions might be answered if the Hooe Dependency Site is studied further?
  • Do visitors feel that archeological resources in the national parks are adequately treated, studied and preserved?
  • What message or messages about the treatment of archeological resources do you want visitors to take away with them?

TSM/MJB