Star-Spangled Archaeology: Commemorating the War of 1812 Through Maritime Archaeology, will be the final topic for the Historical Society of Cecil County’s winter speakers program, as we wrap up a series of popular talks. Taking place on Saturday, April 13th at 2:00, the speaker, State Underwater Archaeologist Susan Langley, is sponsored by the Maryland Humanities Council and the Maryland War of 1812 Commission.
The waters of the Chesapeake conceal many hidden treasures, and Dr. Langley will help us dive into the subject of those submerged cultural resources. She describes the fascinating process of researching and excavating these artifacts while investigating the sites of maritime battles.
Locally, her staff has worked on the Elk River several times, exploring the mysteries under the waters of the Elk River, over the years. Those investigations, headed by then assistant state underwater archaeologist, Stephen R. Bilicki, have included a phase one survey of the Upper Elk River, which took place in 2003. That broad survey focused on identifying the location of submerged cultural resources, including Elkton’s industrial harbor near Bridge Street, the boatyard at Elk Landing, War of 1812 artifacts at Frenchtown, and more.
During two more specific investigations, Bilicki, working with two students from the University of Eastern North Carolina, Michael Hughes and Mike Plakos, worked to pinpoint underwater War of 1812 relics at Frenchtown.
We will hear all about this in the final lecture for this season.