Profile

Richard Dent

Associate Professor
Department of Anthropology

  • Additional Positions at AU

    Anthropology Faculty
    Affiliate Associate Professor, Department of History
  • Prof. Dent is the author of Chesapeake Prehistory: Old Traditions, New Directions and a significant number of other publications on the archaeology of the Chesapeake and Middle Atlantic regions. He maintains interests in both prehistoric and historic archaeology. His active program of field investigations in the Potomac Valley currently focuses on the origins of settled village life and the incorporation of horticulture into subsistence bases after AD 1200. He maintains a strong interest in Paleoindian and Southwestern archaeology. Much of his research in historical archaeology has taken place in Annapolis and more recently in Philadelphia. The latter research focused on the excavations of numerous 18th through early 19th century house sites along Arch Street in Old Philadelphia. An important element of his overall research program is a passionate commitment to cultural resources management, as both preservation and as dissemination of archaeological knowledge to the general public.
  • Degrees

    PhD Anthropology, American University. 1979
    BA, Anthropology, University of Maryland, College Park. 1975
  • Languages Spoken:

    Spanish
  • OFFICE

  • CAS - Anthropology
  • Hamilton - 301
  • CONTACT INFO

  • (202) 885-1848 (Office)
  • Send email Profile UserID
  • FOR THE MEDIA

  • To request an interview for a
    news story, call AU Communications
    at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.

Teaching

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Research Interests

A profound transformation in lifeways occurred in the Potomac Valley late in prehistory.  To investigate the nature of these changes he has been excavating a series of three former Native American villages along the river north of the city.  A particular interest has been changes in community and household structure and the degree to which domesticated plants were incorporated into diet along with reconstruction of regional paleoecology.  He is also currently undertaking research on an Appalachian woman’s life and times in eastern West Virginia during the early 19th century.  Recently he has participated in archaeological surveys of Ancestral Pueblo sites in the Llaves Valley of New Mexico.

Grants and Sponsored Research

       
  • National Park Service Cooperative Agreement
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  • Numerous Privately Funded Cultural Resources Management research contracts
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  • Federal Bureau of Prisons and Louis Berger, Inc. Funded Analysis of Philadelphia Artifacts
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  • Excavations at the Winslow site funded by the Archaeological Society of Maryland and Maryland Historic Trust
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  • Excavations at the Claggett Retreat site funded by the Archaeological Society of Maryland and Maryland Historic Trust
  •    
  • Excavations at the Hughes site funded by the Archaeological Society of Maryland and Maryland Historic Trust

Professional Certifications

       
  • FAA Licensed Aircraft Pilot
  •    
  • Special Training in HAZMAT and Confined Spaces Entry

Work In Progress

       
  • Time’s Shadow: An Archaeology of the Chesapeake Bay Region and Its Peoples. Monograph.
  •    
  • Remember Me:  The Life and Times of Margaret House, A Nineteenth Century Appalachian Woman. Monograph.
  •    
  • Excavations at the Hughes Site: The 2006 Season for Journal of Maryland Archaeology.
  •    
  • The Claggett Retreat Site and the Mason Island Complex for Journal of Maryland Archaeology.

Selected Publications

       
  • Chesapeake Prehistory: Old Traditions, New Directions - Monograph
  •    
  • Archaeological and Historical Investigations at 36PH91, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania - Monograph
  •    
  • Amerinds and the Environment: Myth, Realty, and the Upper Delaware Valley - Book Chapter
  •    
  • Gentrification: The Redefinition of Urban Neighborhood - Book Chapter
  •    
  • See Collecting and Fishing at the Shawnee Minisink Site - Book Chapter
  •    
  • Deep Time in the Potomac River Valley: Thoughts on Paleoindian Lifeways and Revisionist Archaeology - Journal Article
  •    
  • Winslow Site: Household and Community Archaeology in the Middle Potomac Valley - Journal Article

Professional Presentations

       
  • Winslow Village Site: Early Agriculture in the Potomac Valley - Society for American Archaeology
  •    
  • The Post Hunter-Forager World: The Potomac Valley Experiments - Southeastern Archaeological Conference
  •    
  • Excavations at the Hughes Site: Village Life in the Potomac Valley - Eastern States Archaeological Confederation
  •    
  • Accokeek Creek: Chronology and the Potomac Creek Complex - Middle Atlantic Archaeological Conference
  •    
  • Redating the Paleoindian Component at the Shawnee Minisink Paleoindian Site - Society for American Archaeology

Exhibitions/Performances

Archaeological Exhibition : Middle Potomac Valley Prehistory - On the Edge of a Marshalltown

AU Expert

Area of Expertise: Archaeology, cultural and historic preservation, prehistoric Chesapeake Bay, historic archaeology

Additional Information: Richard Dent is the author of Chesapeake Prehistory: Old Traditions, New Directions and a significant number of other publications about the archaeology of the Chesapeake and Middle Atlantic regions. His interests include prehistoric and historic archaeology. His active program of field investigations in the Potomac Valley focuses on the origins of settled village life and the incorporation of horticulture into subsistence bases after AD 1200. He maintains a strong interest in Paleoindian and Southwestern archaeology. Much of his research in historical archaeology has taken place in Annapolis and more recently in Philadelphia. The latter research focused on the excavations of numerous eighteenth- through early nineteenth-century house sites along Arch Street in old Philadelphia. An important element of his overall research program is a passionate commitment to cultural resources management, as both preservation and as dissemination of archaeological knowledge to the general public.

Media Relations
To request an interview please call AU Media Relations at 202-885-5950 or submit an interview request form.