Community Archaeology at Mount Clare
Carroll’s Hundred Archaeological Collections Project
In 1756, Charles Carroll the Barrister commissioned the construction of Mount Clare, a Georgian-style house today situated in Baltimore’s Pigtown neighborhood. Carroll inherited his plantation — known in various records as Georgia, Carroll’s Plantation on Patapsco, Carroll’s Hundred, and The Baltimore Company –from his father Dr. Charles Carroll. It consisted of about 2500 acres, and he brought his wife Margaret Tilghman and dozens of enslaved persons, indentured servants, and servants to work and live there.
Over time, the plantation’s contours have shrunk with the development of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad to the north and the construction of housing and industry on the other sides. The Mount Clare Museum House is today part of Carroll Park, a Baltimore City park. The Carroll Park Foundation (CPF) manages Carroll’s Hundred and the archaeological collections. Interpretation of the house and its contents is conducted by the National Society of Colonial Dames of the State of Maryland.
In recent years, the Carroll Park Foundation has undertaken public outreach and education projects with students at the Baltimore Talent Development High School (BTDHS), located several blocks north of Carroll’s Hundred in Harlem Park. The “Carroll Park Foundation Collection Management, Stabilization and Research Project” is a phase one collections survey of over two decades of archaeological artifacts from the landscape. CHRS staff, with Pamela Charshee (CPF), Thomas Acampora (BTDHS) and several of their students, are conducting a collaborative project to assess the condition of the Carroll’s Hundred collections. Students are encouraged to develop research questions, with particular focus on African American history, about which little is known materially relative to the Carroll family.
On February 21, 2007, the CHRS staff joined Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, faculty, staff, and BTDHS students in a ribbon cutting ceremony to start the collections project. Members of the student body danced, sang, and read poems in celebration. Click here to view some photos of the event.