Technological Change in a Coastal New England Village, 1790-1990 -- The Duck Creek Harbor Site, Wellfleet, Massachusetts
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This curriculum unit has been developed through my participation in the seminar, “Art and Artifacts: The Cultural Meaning of Objects,” offered through the YaleNew Haven Teachers Institute and led by Professor Jules Prown. The unit takes an interdisciplinary approach to learning, bringing together information from material culture, historical archaeology, ecology, and environmental science. I identify strategies for the study of excavated objects from an archaeological site using the language and methodologies of material culture. The evidence gained from these studies is used to examine changing technologies and associated environmental problems in a coastal New England village, Wellfleet, Massachusetts, an Outer Cape Cod town. It is my intention that my students develop an understanding of the changing beliefs and values of a society and its evolving culture over the two hundred year period from the late 1700s to the late 1900s. The curriculum unit is intended for use in my Environmental Science course, an elective science course for high school juniors and seniors. It is based on an historical archaeology project I have been conducting in Wellfleet for the past 28 years.