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DC Archaeology: Exploring the District’s Archaeological Legacy with Dr. Ruth Trocolli

December 15, 2022 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

Have you ever thought about what lies beneath the city’s surface?


Image of Christine Ames during an archaeological excavation. Courtesy of DC Archaeology.


Join the DC Preservation League and Dr. Ruth Trocolli from the DC Office of Planning on December 15th at 12:00 PM EST for an illuminating webinar on DC’s (literally) underground history.


This program will focus on the District’s Archaeology Program, including curation of the archaeological collections and management of the data generated over the last 50+ years of archaeological investigations. The program was started in response to the establishment of the District State Historic Preservation Office as mandated by the passage of the 1966 National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA). The program came of age in the 1980s and the number of projects has increased steadily, with a resulting increase in the number of sites identified, reports completed, data packets submitted, and artifact collections generated. Managing these data has become a large part of the program.

Recently, the Archaeological Program started the lengthy transfer process of moving hundreds of boxes of artifact collections to a shared, environmentally controlled curation facility at the MLK, Jr. Memorial Library. These collections represent the objects left behind by generations of people and provides us with the opportunity to tell stories about past lives for those who are no longer present and some who never became part of the documentary record.


“The Screen Team at the Shotgun House,” image courtesy of the DC Archaeology Facebook Page.


Dr. Ruth Trocolli is the District Archaeologist for Washington, D.C., in the Historic Preservation Office/ Office of Planning. She was a 2015 winner of the Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Award for exemplary public service, and a 2016 Society for Historical Archaeology Award of Merit for her work in the District. Dr. Trocolli’s prime goals are to identify, record, and protect the District’s archaeological resources. Her duties include reviewing federal and local constructions projects, maintaining the archaeological site files (including GIS), curating the archaeological collections and technical report library, and conducting public outreach. She received her doctorate from the University of Florida in Anthropology with a specialty in North American Archaeology, and a BA from Douglass College, Rutgers University in Classical Archaeology. Dr. Trocolli has been employed as a professional archaeologist since completing her undergraduate degree. She previously worked in the private sector as a consulting archaeologist, in academia, and as a contractor at the Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History.


Summer interns working in the new facility. Image courtesy DC Archaeology.



Join Zoom directly on the day of the event: https://us06web.zoom.us/j/84312839211


DC Office of Planning ||  DC Historic Preservation Office  || DC Preservation League


Questions? Ask us. We’re happy to help. Email info@dcpreservation.org or reach out to us through any of our social media platforms. 


December 15, 2022
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm