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PhD Anthropology, American University. 1979
BA, Anthropology, University of Maryland, College Park. 1975
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.
Archaeological Exhibition : Middle Potomac Valley Prehistory - On the Edge of a Marshalltown
Area of Expertise:
Archaeology, cultural and historic preservation, prehistoric Chesapeake Bay, historic archaeology
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.
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