The Raven site (18HO252) is a multi-component site
at the Triadelphia Reservoir that is comprised of intermittent prehistoric
occupations, an 18th-century domestic site, and a scatter of artifacts
from the 19th and early 20th centuries that most likely resulted from
activity on a neighboring peninsula. The 18th-century component represents
one of the earliest Colonial settlements in Howard County. The property
was patented in 1732 when Thomas Hutchcraft claimed 175 acres there.
Hutchcraft was a planter and apparently lived at the Raven site until
he sold it to Benjamin Purnell in 1768. It is unknown whether anyone
lived at the site under Purnell’s ownership
The Raven site is generally flooded by the Triadelphia
Reservoir, but when water levels recede more than usual, they leave
the site and some of its artifacts exposed. In June and July 2006, a
controlled surface collection and non-ferrous metal-detector survey
were undertaken while water levels were low so that the site could be
documented and artifacts collected before they were resubmerged.
Surface collection covered an area of approximately 3000 square feet.
The core of the site was surveyed on a grid of 400 10’ by 10’
squares to allow the creation of distribution maps. The survey determined
that soils were deflated, with subsoil only about 2”-3”
below the surface, and the soil that remained was primarily redeposited
silt. The metal detector survey did identify an intact feature, however,
which was interpreted as the cellar of Hutchinson’s main house.
This feature was not excavated, but diagnostic artifacts recovered during
the surface collection and metal detector survey fit well with the period
of Hutchinson’s ownership.
|Schiszik, Lauren, and Al Luckenbach
||A Controlled Surface Collection and Metal Detector
Survey of the Raven Site (18HO252) at Triadelphia
Reservoir, Howard County, Maryland. Prepared for the Washington
Suburban Sanitation Commission. Report
on file at the Maryland Historical Trust.