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Burlington's War of 1812 Soldiers' Burial Grounds

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09/12/2005

During the War of 1812, the village of Burlington, VT, served as a supply depot, campground, and major hospital site for the United States Army. While little trace of the military's presence remains visible today, poignant evidence of this often overlooked early nineteenth-century conflict survives below ground, awaiting rediscovery.

As a result of new construction projects, between 2002 and 2005, the university of Vermont Consulting Archaeology Program excavated fifteen burials on North street in Burlington. Personal and military issue items, including buttons, straight pins, fabric, musket balls, folding knives, etc., recovered with the remains clearly indicate that these burials are just a few of an estimated five hundred soldiers believed to have been interred here between 1812 and 1815. Extensive archival research conducted by the Consulting Archaeology Program in conjunction with the excavations has not only provided a detailed historical context for the burials but has also revealed numerous human-interest stories. This talk presents the history of the military cemetery, details the archaeological excavations (highlighting the work conducted in 2005), reports on the analysis of the skeletal material, and reveals discoveries made during the conservation of the artifacts. Presented by Kate Kenny, archaeologist and historian for the UVM Consulting Archaeology Program.

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