A couple of weeks ago the volunteers cleaning remains, led by Kim Eberle-Wang, in the summer Mutter pop-up lab made an interesting discovery – mysterious blue markings on some of the bones they were cleaning from G-260. What could it be? Was it intentional? Was it some sort of strange mold? Thanks to the sleuthing skills of Dr. Allison Grunwald, our blue substance was determined to be vivianite. The damp, iron-rich... Read More
During the Fall Semester (Sept - Dec 2017), Kimberlee Moran ran a "Bones and Bioarchaeology" class at Rutgers-Camden to connect students to the Arch Street project. Over 14 weeks students learned archaeological and anthropological basics within the context of the First Baptist Church of Philadelphia's cemetery. Students helped to clean and assess some of the remains at Rutgers-Camden and helped to organize material culture and human remains at our off-campus facility. As a final... Read More
“How are things going with the project?” “What have you guys been up to?” These are questions that I get asked a lot. The answer is: washing.
The last coffin was internally excavated on January 2, 2018 meaning that since then, all the skeletal material is now a collection of bones in boxes. Before any analysis can be done, all those bones have to be cleaned. Why? So we can really “see” all the features and marks on the bones that help us determine things like sex, age... Read More
Back in March of 2017 when coffins were being excavated from the First Baptist Church’s cemetery on 218 Arch Street, we had a problem: where to put the coffins. At the time, the property developer took them from the site and stored them in shipping containers. But this was not a long-term solution. Neither could we internally excavate the remains in that sort of facility. After a few false starts, a solution emerged: Rutgers-Camden would provide funding for an off-campus warehouse from... Read More