Abstract: Continue reading
Imagine Indiana Jones worked in Delaware. Imagine he found the Ark of the Covenant and donated it to the state, and that he questioned where it was and who was taking care of it. He would be told (as he was in the movie), “Our top people are working on it.”
Imagine that, and know that it has its basis in real life. Even in our small state.
State archaeologist for Delaware’s Division of Historical and Cultural Affairs since 2003, Craig Lukezic has been leading archaeological studies of several colonial forts from the period when the Swedes and Dutch controlled the Delaware Valley, including a recent excavation at Fort Casimir in New Castle and preliminary investigations at Fort Christina State Park. He is also excited about the “search for Fort Christina,” partly because of the site’s significance and because no serious investigation of the fort has ever been conducted.
Craig presently serves as the president of the Archaeological Society of Delaware. He has been instrumental in establishing the Early Colonial Symposium of the Delaware Valley and has contributed to the Lewes Maritime Archaeological Project and to the ongoing research at both Avery’s Rest and Wildcat.
When not “getting dirty” and supervising projects for the state, Craig also teaches as an adjunct at Delaware State University.
Captain John Smith Chesapeake, American Indians and the Indigenous
Landscape of the Upper Nanticoke River, Delaware
Daniel R. Griffith, MA
Griffith Archaeology Consulting
Virginia R. Busby, PhD
Hillside Consulting, LLC
The upper Nanticoke River watershed in Delaware is significantly associated with the voyages of exploration of Captain John Smith in June 1608, the Indian people of the watershed and is illustrative of the 17th century natural environment of the Chesapeake Bay watershed. In the field, archaeologists would identify the Nanticoke town sites identified by Captain John Smith as roughly linear arrangements of discrete households or household clusters paralleling the river, though during the period of occupation the households would be linked by wood lots, land and water trails, and active and fallow agricultural fields defining an integrated cultural landscape. The upper Nanticoke River drainage in Delaware was a rich and varied Indian cultural landscape. Over time, John Smith’s voyage of exploration led to increasing English trade and then European settlement which had profound and lasting effects on the watershed’s indigenous population – the Nanticoke Indians