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Archaeologists begin excavations at Joint Base Langely-Eustis

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JOINT BASE LANGLEY EUSTIS, Va. – Archaeologists from the 733rd Civil Engineer Division Environmental have started excavations on three new sites at Joint Base Langley-Eustis.

Archaeologists and their teams started the excavations after looking at installation records and maps provided by Virginia Department of Historic Resources. Then, they drug one meter by one meter holes approximately 25 to 50 feet deep to look for artifacts and clues that indicate the historic significance of the location.

“Surveys on these areas were done in the 1980s when the sites were found, so now we’re trying to determine if these sites have the potential to yield significant historical information and if they are eligible for the National Register of Historic Places,” said Andrew Wilkins, Louis Berger archeologist. “Our job is to figure out if they are important. That’s a matter of doing some more shovel testing a little closer together so we can find out where there are concentrations of artifacts.”

The archaeologists found a few small projectile points and stone tools at the sites, which most likely date back to the archaic period.

“Our studies tell about all people that lived in this area so the whole American experience can pretty much be experienced by looking at the archeological sites here at JBLE,” said McDaid. “We have sites on this installation where people lived 10,000 years ago. We have sites where English colonists lived in 1618. The real takeaway is that all of Joint Base Langley-Eustis has significant pieces of American history on them.”