An examination of landscape analysis in Bahamas plantation archaeology


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An examination of landscape analysis in Bahamas plantation archaeology
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Hicks, Katherine E.
Katherine E. Hicks ( donor )
College of The Bahamas
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University of Cincinnati
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Archaeology -- Bahamas   ( lcsh )


In this thesis the history of the Bahamas, its geographic and historical connections to other Caribbean islands and the American mainland, and its participation in the plantation economy of the 16th to 19th centuries are used to explain how employing comparative landscape studies in the archaeological analysis of the Bahamian plantation context would benefit the archaeology of the Bahamas archipelago by providing further insight to the role and experiences of the suppressed slave population, and how their traditions persist today within the living inhabitants of the Bahamas.

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U UNIVERSITY OF CINCINNATI Date: I, h ereby submit this original work as part of the requirements for the degree of: in It is entitled: Student Signature: This work and its defense approved by: Committee Chair: Approval of the electronic document: I have reviewed the Thesis/Dissertation in its final electronic format and certify that it is an accurate copy of the document reviewed and approved by the committee. Committee Chair signature: June9,2009 KatherineE.Hicks MasterofArts Anthropology AnExaminationofLandscapeAnalysisinBahamasPlantationArchaeology KatherineE.Hicks KennethB.Tankersley,Ph.D. SarahE.Jackson,Ph.D. KennethB.Tankersley


An Examination of Landscape Analysis in Bahamas Plantation Archaeology A thesis submitted to the Graduate School of the University of Cincinnati in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Master of Arts in the Department of Anthropology of the McMicken College of Arts and Sciences by Katherine E. Hicks B.S. Kent State University September 2009 Committee: Kenneth B. Tankersley, Ph.D., Chair Sarah E. Jackson, Ph.D.


ii ABSTRACT Landscape archaeology has been successfully used in the study of plantation contexts within the Caribbean and United States as a method of comparative analysis across regions and sites, and as a tool for detecting and interpreting the existence of agency, or the actions and resistance, of the slaves who inhabited those sites during the period from the 16th through 19th centuries. Within the Bahamas, however, there is a lack in landscape analysis; though surveys of former plantations reveal the standing remains of the built environment, these buildings are used for little more than locating site features and recording construction techniques used during the Loyalist period of 1783 to 1834. In this thesis the history of the Bahamas, its geographic and historical connections to other Caribbean islands and the American mainland, and its participation in the plantation economy of the 16th to 19th centuries are used to explain how employing comparative landscape studies in the archaeological analysis of the Bahamian plantation context would benefit the archaeology of the Bahamas archipelago by providing further insight to the role and experiences of the suppressed slave population, and how their traditions persist today within the living inhabitants of the Bahamas.




iv ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I would like to express my sincerest gratitude to my thesis committee, Dr. Kenneth Tankersley and Dr. Sarah Jackson. Thank you for standing by me and supporting me in finishing this thesis, and for putting me back on track when this project seemed to derail. Thank you also to Dr. Mary Jane Berman, of Miami University, and to Michael Pateman, who provided me with resources and materials I could have not found elsewhere and helped to develop the topic of this thesis, offering inspiration and guidance. And thank you to my family: Mom, Dad, and Jackie, and to my dearest Iain, who have supported me through it all, offering words of encouragement and putting up with my frustrations. And to my grandparents, Grandma and Grandpa Burford; you have been my inspiration, my motivation. I could never imagine my life without you and I hope I have made you proud.


v TABLE OF CONTENTS Abstract .ii Acknowledgements ...iii Table of Contents ...v List of Figures ..vii List of Tables...viii Chapter 1 Introduction ....1 Chapter 2 Overview of the History of the Bahamas from First European Contact to the End of Slavery........................................................................................................5 The Bahamas Archipelago 8 English Colonization .9 The Loyalist Period, 1783-1834 ..12 Chapter 3 Landscape Archaeology and its Application to Plantation Studies .....16 Spatial Analysis and Scale ...19 Landscape Analysis through Historic Documents ...28 Landscape Analysis through Ethnographic Resources ....33 Landscape Analysis through the Material Record ...37 Landscape as an Analytical Tool .43 Chapter 4 Landscape Archaeology in the Bahamas.. ........50 Bahamas Landscape Archaeology, 1970 present ..51 Architectural Survey ....53 Spatial Distribution as an Indicator of Activity ...57 Future Directions for Bahamas Landscape Archaeology 61


vi Chapter 5 Conclusions ..78 References Cited .... ..82


vii LIST OF FIGURES Figure 1. Map of the Bahamas Archipelago 6 Figure 2. Map of the Caribbean ...7 Figure 3. Map of Early Slave Village, Seville Plantation ......25 Figure 4. Map of Late Slave Village, Seville Plantation ........26


viii LIST OF TABLES Table 1. Percentages of Ceramic Shape/Function Analysis at Wade's Green69 Table 2. Percentage of Hollowware in Assemblages .....70


1 Chapter 1 Introduction Landscape archaeology is the study of past populations through the examination of the use and modification of their environment. It can be applied to any cultural group, region, or time period and is particularly useful in understanding how suppressed populations viewed and utilized their environment, in the absence of written documentation. This makes landscape analysis particularly useful to the study of plantation environments, where the personal experiences of the enslaved workforce are often only visible through the remains of archaeological record. This thesis will examine how landscape archaeology, when considered among other forms of archaeological analysis, provides insight to the larger context of the plantation and the interactions that occurred there. The study of landscape archaeology in the plantation context requires interpreting the landscape through the use of material remains and written documentation in an effort to learn how people used and shaped their environment. Landscape archaeology includes a variety of archaeological studies and methods, such as landscape reconstruction and use interpretation, analyzing relationships among structures or natural features to derive social, economic, or political elements that shaped their construction and use, and the changes in these features over time. This practice of examining the landscape has been applied to plantation contexts throughout the Caribbean and United States; its use in the Bahamas, however, is infrequent and underdeveloped. Often studies of Bahamian plantation archaeology include a list of building features, but do not examine the relationships that exist between those buildings and other site


2 features. This thesis is an effort to display how the use of landscape analysis would benefit future plantation studies in the Bahamas by providing archaeologists with the ability to form interpretations that reveal the connections between the material record and the non-material elements of human activity, experience, and ideology. This thesis will begin with a brief account of Bahamas history, from the arrival of the European colonizers, in 1492 and again in the mid-16th century to the abolition of slavery in the mid-19th century. This time period is commonly referred to as the African period. By including this historical account, the events and economic setting of this African period can be understood for the effect they had in shaping the Bahamas plantation system, influencing the economy, and altering the culture of the Bahamas. The historical events of the Bahamas influenced how the islands within the archipelago interacted amongst themselves and with other island colonies as participants in a regional plantation economy, and serve to validate comparative studies that analyze plantation features and general patterns across islands and regions. Landscape analysis in the archaeology of plantations has been used to interpret a variety of information from the available archaeological remains. Chapter 3 of this thesis will offer a discussion of landscape archaeology and explain what types of information can be gained from conducting a landscape analysis at a plantation site. Using various archaeological studies undertaken throughout the Caribbean and United States, this chapter will explain how different archaeological methods, such as artifact analysis, the examination of historic documents, and other forms of information available to the archaeologist, can be combined with landscape analysis to better understand how those elements interact across the site. By providing an array of studies in which landscape analysis has been applied to interpret human experience and activity from the archaeological record, I will show how the characteristics of landscape


3 archaeology make it a beneficial tool to archaeological study. The landscape is a versatile element within the archaeological record, and the variety of methods, applications, and theoretical viewpoints applied to its study reflect that. Drawing on the examples provided within Chapter 3 and the discussion of landscape archaeology's application to the archaeological record, Chapter 4 will focus on the application of landscape archaeology to studies of the plantation context in the Bahamas. Archaeological studies of the Bahamian plantation context often give little consideration to the role of the landscape as an active force in the expression and creation of human activity and relations. Those that do examine the landscape usually fall within two categories: studies cataloging built features and studies that use the artifactual record, or other archaeological evidence, as a means to identify buildings as the settings for human activity. By examining the current limitations in landscape analysis as it is applied to the Bahamas plantation context, I conclude that future studies in the Bahamas would benefit from the variety of methods available to the landscape archaeologist as part of the versatile nature of landscape archaeology. The landscape is multiscalar, multi-temporal, and can be examined by multiple archaeological methods or theoretical viewpoints. Landscape analysis also allows for the application of the concept of middle-range theory to the plantation context. All of these aspects of landscape analysis allow plantation archaeologists to construct interpretations that consider the entirety of the material record, the relationships between landscape features, and the human qualities of culture, experience, and social relations. This thesis will show, by offering examples of plantation landscape analyses, that interpretations of landscape help to satisfy the current research goals of plantation archaeologists to identify the role, experience, and identity of the slave population within the archaeological


4 record and larger systems of economic and social relations. The landscape is not only a physical backdrop for human activity, created by actions and behaviors. It is an active participant in human relations, revealing intentions and motives and offering its inhabitants the ability to reinterpret those meanings as a form of resistance or expression. In the landscape of the plantation, the social agents of slaves and planters interacted through their activities, but also through their landscape. In the Bahamas the artifactual remains, such as ceramics, have been examined for information on slave identity, cultural tradition, and expression; by applying landscape analysis in the same manner, it is my view that these interpretations will provide a broader look into planter/slave relations and their influence on the plantation system.


5 Chapter 2 Overview of the History of the Bahamas from First European Contact to the End of Slavery The historic events that occurred in the Bahamas during the periods of colonization and plantation slavery directly impacted the plantation context, as understood through archaeological analysis. This chapter provides a brief background of historic events in the Bahamas (Figure 1). This thesis is a review of the application of landscape analysis to Bahamas plantation archaeology; therefore it is necessary to know under what circumstances the plantation system developed within the archipelago and how those events influenced life and the economy on the various islands. The economy of the Caribbean (Figure 2) was built on the production of plantation crops, primarily sugar, which was made possible through the use of slave labor. Slavery existed in the Caribbean since the establishment of the first European settlements in 1495, but the slave trade began the importation of African slaves as early as 1502, when the first African slaves arrived on Hispaniola from Spain (Palmer 1997:10). The African slave trade peaked between 1670 and 1830. In 1700 there were an estimated 150,000 slaves of African descent living and working in British America. Plantations were not necessarily founded on slave labor, though they did thrive off of its use. Instead they were initially worked by convicts and indentured servants, brought from Europe; this practice did not ensure a constant source of labor, though, and the large-scale import of African slaves began between 1505 and 1510, when King Ferdinand of Spain urged the use and importation of African slaves, citing their greater strength over that of the native Indians (Palmer 1997:10-11, 13-14). This early period of colonization in the Caribbean is referred to as the African period, or plantation period, and lasted until the emancipation of the slaves.


6 Abolition was a drawn out process, occurring first in 1834 in the British colonies and lasting until 1886 when Spain finally declared emancipation in Cuba (Knight 1997:334-338). Figure 1. Map of the Bahamas Archipelago


7 Figure 2. Map of the Caribbean In 1640 began the Sugar Revolution, when plantations were established for the largescale production of sugar and its byproducts, rum and molasses (Eltis 1997:107). In the English Caribbean the Sugar Revolution began on Barbados, while on the French islands Guadeloupe was home to the first sugar plantations. This Sugar Revolution coincided with an increased demand for sugar by the population of Europe while advances in technology and new production methods allowed for its export and sale to the masses. During the seventeenth century the English island of Barbados was the largest producer of sugar (Eltis 1997:107). In 1720 it was surpassed by Jamaica, also under English rule. By the late eighteenth century France's Caribbean holdings became the new sugar power, with Cuba


8 following as the dominant sugar producer after the Haitian rebellion and resulting independence in 1804. Cuba's continued import and use of slave labor into the nineteenth century also contributed to its success as a sugar producing island; England, along with the newly independent United States, abolished the slave trade in 1807. England ended slavery in 1834, while France officially ended slavery in 1848. As mentioned, Spain did not end slavery in its American colonies until a period stretching from 1864 to 1886 saw the gradual emancipation of its American holdings (Knight 1997:334-338). Sugar was not the only crop produced for export by the Caribbean island plantations, though. Coffee, indigo, and cotton were all grown and exported, though they experienced differing periods of importance and increased production (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:17). Coffee and cotton production increased on the British holdings after the fall of the French sugar producing industry in the Caribbean at the beginning of the nineteenth century. This coincides with the large-scale arrival of loyalist planters after the American Revolution and the establishment of a plantation economy in the Bahamas archipelago, the archeology of which is the focus of this thesis. The Bahamas Archipelago The Bahamas archipelago is a chain of 700 islands with a land area of 5,350 square miles (Johnson 1996:1). Unlike the volcanic islands of the Antilles, the islands of the Bahamas archipelago are formed from coralline limestone, and surrounded by reefs (Johnson 1996:1-2; Newsom and Wing 2004:174). As a result, the soil is too thin and stony to support large-scale agricultural production. Located within a subtropical climate, dry and exposed areas with little vegetative growth are found throughout the Bahamas, and fresh water is very sparse, with no


9 rivers or streams being found among the islands. On these small, low elevation islands the lowest rainfalls in the Caribbean occur, with most areas receiving between 200 and 750 millimeters of rainfall each year (Johnson 1996:2). Other islands receive 1000 to 2000 millimeters, while upland regions can receive as much as 7000 millimeters. It is from this rainfall that most drinking water on the Bahamas is obtained for human consumption (Newsom and Wing 2004:174-175). The environment of the Bahamas directly influenced its early history. The island of San Salvador in the Bahamas archipelago is believed to have been the site of Columbus's first landfall in October of 1492 AD (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:14). There he encountered the Lucayans, the indigenous inhabitants of the Bahamas and a faction of the Taino peoples who inhabited the islands of the Greater Antilles in the period prior to European contact. The Bahamas did not meet the expectations of the Spanish with its limited resources and the Europeans moved on to the islands of the Greater Antilles, establishing settlements on the more fertile island of Hispaniola (Craton 1986:37-38). The Bahamas did have one resource of interest to the Europeans, though: the Lucayan population. By 1525 the Lucayan population had been destroyed by new diseases, hostility, and by the European practice of exporting their population to other Caribbean islands where they were forced to labor as slaves (Craton 1986:39; Craton and Saunders 1992:48, 53-59, 63-64; Johnson 1996:2-3; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:14). The Bahamas are considered to have become uninhabited after the extinction of the Lucayans. English Colonization European interest in the archipelago did not rise again until 1565 AD with the establishment and failure of a French settlement on the islands (Johnson 1996:3). Though Spain


10 held claim to the Bahamas, due to the initial landfall by Columbus, and did not formally relinquish the islands until 1783 under the Treaty of Versailles, the English laid claim to the islands in 1629. English settlers did not create a permanent settlement on the island until 1647, with the arrival of the Eleutherian Adventurers (Craton 1986:54, 1997:77; Craton and Saunders 1992:64, 66, 74; Johnson 1996:3-4; Lawlor 1998:5-8; Lawlor and Lawlor 2008:9; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:15-17). In reaction to oppression resulting from differences between Royalist supporters of the Anglican church and independent and Puritan worshipers, immigrants from the English island of Bermuda, 800 miles to the northeast of the Bahamas, arrived in the Bahamas in search of political and religious freedom (Johnson 1996:3; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:15). The religious and political controversies affecting the population of Bermuda corresponded with the Civil War occurring in England, and reflects the fighting between the Royalist Cavaliers and Puritan Roundheads. With Parliament ruled by Puritans, the Eleutherian Adventurers found support for their cause and were granted permission to settle in the Bahamas, though a charter for the colony has yet to be uncovered (Lawlor 1998:5). Financially supported by the Company of Adventurers for the Plantation of the Islands of Eleutheria, commonly referred to as the Eleutherian Adventurers, a group of Puritans and English settlers traveled to the Bahamas from Bermuda in search of economic, political and religious freedom. They settled on the island of Eleuthera and established the settlement of Governor's Bay, which acted as a political and religious center until it was attacked by the Spanish in 1685 (Lawlor and Lawlor 2008). Though the population fluctuated with the departure of settlers who returned to Bermuda or left for the American mainland colonies, the settlements of the Bahamas experienced population growth, though its slow pace is believed to indicate the hardships and difficulty in obtaining resources experienced by the early colonists. Despite this slow rate of population


11 growth, the settlers were able to expand to the islands neighboring Eleutheria, such as Current Island, Cat Island, Harbour Island, and New Providence. In 1670 a Proprietary government established the new capital of the Bahamas at Charles Town on the island of New Providence. Charles Town would later be renamed to Nassau, and is the current capital of the Bahamas (Craton 1986:79; Craton and Saunders 1992:101). After a period of violent rule by pirates in the early 18th century, the insistence of other colonies provoked the British Crown into making the Bahamas a Crown Colony, under the rule of an appointed Royal Governor (Craton and Saunders 1992:115; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:20-21). Throughout the eighteenth century the English government sought to standardize the industry of the Bahamas, while promoting economic and population growth. The economy of the Bahamas prior to the arrival of the loyalist planters was composed of a variety of industries, as a result of the climate and resources available on the islands of the archipelago, and diverged from those practiced in the other British Caribbean territories (Craton and Saunders 1992:86-89; Johnson 1996:4-6; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:17). Most were seafaring activities, such as the hunting of marine species, like turtles and fish, and practiced wrecking, or looting the wrecks and using or selling their finds. Shipwrecks were common along the shipping routes that passed the Bahamas, due to the reefs surrounding the islands of the Bahamas (Johnson 1996:5). Other resources were also available in the Bahamas archipelago. The woodcutting industry produced hardwoods, dyewoods and those used for medicinal purposes and materials for building and ship construction (Craton and Saunders 1992:85-89; Saunders 2002:130). On the southern islands of Crooked Island and Exuma salt was raked and produced for local use as well as export (Craton and Saunders 1992:197-198). These industries had been practiced on the islands of the Bahamas since before the establishment of a permanent colony, with colonists


12 from the Spanish islands and sailors from Bermuda visiting the islands to gather its resources (Lawlor 1998:4). The Loyalist Period, 1783-1834 The widespread practice of establishing plantations throughout the Bahamas archipelago began with the arrival of the loyalist planters from the American Southeast. Between 1783 and 1790 the population of the Bahamas tripled as almost 1600 loyalists migrated with their slaves from Eastern Florida and the American colonies, resulting in the mass movement of over 7000 people to the Bahamas (Johnson 1996:11). With this population increase the percentage of black slaves and freemen rose to three-fourths of the total population. The number of permanently inhabited islands, previously only being three, Eleuthera, Harbour Island, and New Providence, was expanded to twelve (Craton and Saunders 1992:179). This population boom in the Bahamas coincided with European industrial growth and a worldwide increase in the demand for cotton (Johnson 1996:12). The loyalist migrants replicated the plantation economies in which they had lived in the American colonies and East Florida, and established plantations throughout the Bahamas devoted to the cultivation of cotton. These were not the first plantations in the Bahamas, however. Plantation slavery was introduced to the archipelago in 1721, with slave gangs employed on small plantations where they labored to grow indigo, cotton, sugar cane, and provisional produce for local consumption (Craton 1997:156; Johnson 1996:15). At that time slaves were being imported to help promote the economic growth of the islands, though it had little effect. The British government in 1785 offered to grant forty acres of land to each household head, with an additional twenty acres for each dependent, including family members and slaves


13 (Johnson 1996:11). This incentive program was available to all of the newly arrived loyalist migrants as well as the existing population. The land granted was exempt of quit rents, or charges for securing tenure, for ten years (Craton and Saunders 1992:191). This allocation of land promoted the expansion of the population to new islands, though half remained on New Providence, and began the large-scale commercial production of cotton. Period writings on the success of cotton production are believed to have influenced its development as a primary plantation crop within the Bahamas. It was described as a versatile plant, being able to grow in soils of poor quality, like those found in the Bahamas. Planters who had experienced great success with their efforts to produce cotton were publicized throughout the islands. For example, in 1800 Joseph Eve published an editorial praising the success of a planter named Abraham Pratt (Johnson 1996:10). At its height, the Bahamian cotton industry was producing and exporting over 400 tons of cotton, such as in 1790 and 1791 (Saunders 2002:130). The decline of cotton production was blamed on several influencing factors. Joseph Eve, inventor of Eve's cotton gin, postulated that the soil, inadequate from the beginning, was exhausted (Johnson 1996:26-28; Saunders 2002:131). The Bahamian planters did not use manure to fertilize their fields, primarily because of the lack of livestock, which would have produced the fertilizer (Johnson 1996:26-27). The soil was yet another Bahamian resource that was overexploited with the arrival of a new population, just as the Lucayan had been over 200 years before. The planters were also inexperienced. While some had no experience in plantation agriculture prior to arriving in the Bahamas, those that did had grown rice and indigo, first in South Carolina and Georgia then in East Florida (Johnson 1996:14, 27; Lewis 1985:40-41). Though it is a common assumption that they would have been familiar with cotton production,


14 cotton did not become an important crop in the American colonies until shortly after the arrival of the loyalist planters in the Bahamas (Johnson 1996:14). The planters, therefore, would have had little to no experience with its cultivation prior to their migration to the Bahamas. In addition to the inexperience of the planters and the quality of the soil, natural forces also affected the production of cotton and other crops. Insects, such as the chenille caterpillar and red bug, invaded the crops and resulted in production declines in 1788 and 1794 (Saunders 2002). Between 1798 and 1800 no cotton was exported from the Bahamas, and by 1805 the plantation system of the Bahamas was on the decline. Hurricanes were also recorded as affecting crop production. In reaction to this crisis of production, new varieties of cotton were researched in an attempt to find one that was better suited to the subtropical climate and soil quality. Actions were taken by the government to aid the planters in combating insect infestations, but were poorly funded and made little difference (Johnson 1996:27). The downward trend in cotton production continued into the early nineteenth century and many plantations were abandoned (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:33). Slaves were sold to pay debts, and the failed planters returned to England or the United States. Some planters, however, remained on the islands. Planters moved to new islands and established plantations on the unused soils there. Two common methods of coping with the failure of cotton were undertaken by converting one's plantation to another crop or industry, and by hiring out slaves to participate in maritime activities and other sectors of the economy (Johnson 1996:19; Saunders 2002:143-144). Former cotton plantations were converted from producing cotton and began to produce food crops and other resources for local consumption. Also with the decline of cotton, salt production expanded and there was a


15 return to the varied industries practiced prior to the growth of the plantation economy, such as wrecking and other maritime industries. Slavery ended in the British Caribbean in 1834 (Craton and Saunders 1992:231). At the abolition of slavery, many of the Bahamas plantations were already abandoned, with the slaves continuing to live and work on them in enclaves devoted to subsistence agriculture. It was from these slaves that the modern population of the Bahamas has developed, and the islands remain inhabited by groups who continued to live and work on the lands of the former plantations through the 19th and 20th centuries (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:33-34). The history of the Bahamas illustrates how the archipelago shares historic ties with other former British colonies, which offer the ability and justification in completing comparative analyses of plantation archaeology. In addition, the historic events that occurred throughout the African period in the Bahamas shaped the cultural, economic, and social situations experiences by the plantation inhabitants. The effects of these historic events, the mass migration of loyalist planters to the Bahamas, their subsequent abandonment of their plantation estates, and the resulting effects on the economy of the Bahamas, can be seen within the archaeological record, and by cultivating a familiarity with the history of the archipelago and the larger colonial region, archaeologists can recognize how historical events are reflected within the archaeological remains at plantation sites. The remaining chapters of this thesis are devoted to defining how plantation landscape archaeology and methods applied in related regions may be used to expand this area of study within the Bahamas.


16 Chapter 3 Landscape Archaeology and its Application to Plantation Studies This chapter serves to express the importance of landscape archaeology within the broader study of plantation archaeology throughout the Caribbean and United States. In the Bahamas, the region of interest for this thesis, landscape archaeology and the ability to draw connections between regions and archaeological methods from its application has been grossly underused. Often the only reference to the plantation's landscape comes with a brief description of the standing architectural remains at the site; the relationships between the buildings and other archaeological features of the site are not developed. Landscape studies outside the Bahamas, however, have, for over twenty years, been effectively used to examine planter-slave relations, identify continued African cultural practices evident from site modification by the slave community, and connect historical elements of slave life to the Caribbean population today. Vernacularly, the word landscape is used to describe the features, natural and built, that exist within a space and the visual views of it. The word landscape also has been used to refer to intangible concepts, such as the political landscape or the economic landscape. Archaeologically, landscape refers to the human interactions that occur with and within an environment or space. It is the network of interpretations, experiences, physical structures, both built and natural, and the political, economic, or social aspects active within a culture that serve as motivations driving those interactions. Landscape archaeology is a form of spatial analysis that grew in popularity during the 1970s among various schools of archaeological thought (Clarke 1977:3-4). Spatial analysis includes such archaeological methods as the study and interpretation of artifact, feature, and site


17 distributions, otherwise known as spatial patterning, landscape reconstruction, site use interpretation, and contributes to the understanding of regional interactions, trade, diffusion of people or resources, or changes occurring across time (Clarke 1977:5-6; Hodder and Orton 1976:1; Kelly and Norman 2007:176). By retrieving information from spatial relationships within the archaeological record, spatial archaeology can examine all levels of human activity, the remains of the activity, the environment in which it took place, and the resources available there that influenced that activity (Clarke 1977:9, 11-13). Landscape archaeology can analyze the activity and lifeways of the hidden or voiceless majority, or those whose viewpoints are not represented in historical documents (Bograd 1995:26; Croucher 2007:59; Farnsworth and Wilkie Farnsworth 1990:10-11; Lange and Handler 1985:15-17; Singleton 1985:5). It can be applied to the study of any period or region. Systematic analysis of the physical landscape can serve to reveal the presence of built structures that did not survive in the archaeological record, which in turn may alter population estimates for a region, influence changes in interpretation of the relations between the elite and common sectors of the population, and reveal how settlements and cultures developed within the context of the broader human and material landscape (Croucher 2007:59). Landscape studies are useful in that, through this variety of methods and scales, they can portray large, general patterns that exist within or across regions, as well as display how individuals on specific plantations may have lived and witnessed the landscape, reacting to the influences placed on them through the landscape by other players within it (Clarke 1977:9; Hauser 2009:4-6; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:20, 24). Landscape analysis also allows for the combination of processual and post-processual approaches to archaeological study, in that they ask both what was the function, the economy, and practices quantitative studies of artifacts, but


18 also aim to reveal how the symbolism and aspects of social life and identity are reflected in the landscape (Croucher 2007:64; Hauser and Hicks 2007:258, 259-260; Yamin and Metheny 1996:xiii-xv). The study of how social aspects exist within the landscape can serve to develop or reinforce a common culture. In the Caribbean the preservation, development and expression of identity, particularly the African and Creole identities, is a popular research goal for both archaeologists and anthropologists. Understanding the cultural influences and identities of the historically enslaved populations is important to the cultural heritage of the modern Caribbean populations, the descendants of former slaves (Turner and Fairclough 2007:137-139). The archaeological record reflects changes in culture as they occurred throughout different periods of time and are not confined to a single moment or culture. Landscape analysis is one example of how the changes and interactions among past peoples can be viewed from the archaeological interpretation of the material record. By examining the archaeological landscape and revealing how the identity of the slave population is expressed within it, a historical background explaining the common heritage of the modern Caribbean population, with their cultural ties to African, European, and North American cultures, is constructed (Turner and Fairclough 2007). Landscape archaeology is closely related to other disciplines, such as geography, ecology, and geology. These additional fields help to facilitate the analysis of the human construction of landscape by providing a holistic view of the environment and contributing general theories and concepts to its study (Clarke 1977:1, 9). The environment influences the behavior and interpretations of the cultural group living within it, as much as the activities and the motivational forces directing those actions influence and shape the environment. Landscape analysis draws on methods and concepts from these other fields, leading to its classification as an


19 interdisciplinary approach to archaeology. The complex nature of the plantation system and the varied forces at work within it require consideration of interdisciplinary approaches and themes, and an understanding of how they interact (Singleton 1985:3). The landscape is a network of human interaction, with other humans and with the environment (Croucher 2007:59-61; Heilen 2005:21-23, ; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:15, 24). The impact of varying cultural, social or political influences can be contextualized by examining them within the broad network of the landscape and its different degrees of scale. How landscape studies are used in conjunction with other forms of archaeological analysis will also be discussed in this chapter. The interpretation of the landscape is supplemented by historic documentation, the material record of artifacts located within a site, the ethnobotanical remains, and ethnological records or observations of relevant social groups. Spatial Analysis and Scale Spatial analysis offers insight to the relations of power and resistance among varying scales of human interaction and activity (Anderson 2004:26; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:20). The issue of scale has become a topic of much consideration for those archaeologists studying spatial archaeology. A variety of scales exist in landscape analysis, which reflect the diverse nature of the landscape, the information it may reveal, and the subject matter it may be employed to examine (Croucher 2007:61; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:25). These scales reflect the social and spatial elements of the landscape. Scales of social analysis consider that landscape exists through human interpretation as a reflection of the land's economic potential, and human cultural institutions and behavior. The archaeological environment is composed of the remains of everyday life and experiences, which


20 took place within that landscape and therefore reveals how humans created, acted, and changed that environment through their daily activities (Hicks and McAtackney 2007:24). In turn, the landscape, the environment and its physical opportunities and limitations, shape human behavior and thought, provoking changes within the cultural, social, or economic segments of their human experience. Studies of the plantation landscape employ social scales and analyses as a means of identifying the human aspect of the landscape; by interpreting the landscape and related archaeological remains archaeologists studying plantation landscape archaeology form conclusions detailing human behavior, motivation, and reaction. Examples of such studies are discussed below. Scales used in examining spatial expanse or layout allow archaeologists to consider the physical aspect of the landscape, whether it encompasses a single site or site feature, or an entire region (Delle 1998:13). The variability that exists between regions allows for ideas and approaches to be applied across them, with their differences being reflected as those concepts are adapted to the region or site (Hauser and Hicks 2007:252; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:6-17, 20). Spatial scales can be classed as micro-scalar (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Singleton 2001; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005), or focusing primarily on a single site, or macro-scalar, where the study includes a large selection of sites and compares their spatial features in an attempt at creating a general model, reflecting planter control (Delle 1998; Higman 1988). Multi-scalar studies, where multiple spatial scales are applied in a single study, allow for the study of identity construction in relation to material remains and to the landscape, such as at the spatial levels of the slave cabin, slave village, and the plantation as a whole (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Hauser and Hicks 2007:252, 262-266; Wilkie And Farnsworth 1999, 2005).


21 Studies at the macro-scalar level consider the plantation as an element within the system, or economy, of an individual island or region. Such studies include surveys of plantation layout and land use practices, like those completed by Delle (1998) and Higman (1988) on Jamaica. These surveys conclude that the ideologies and economic or social beliefs of the plantation owner are revealed through the landscape design, and how these motivating factors were shared among the population of planter elites can be examined from the physical landscape. In his study of Jamaican plantations, Higman (1988) surveyed and recorded a selection of coffee and sugar plantations throughout the island. Through this study, general patterns of landscape use, plantation layout, and the relationships between plantation features were identified and used to create models of the plantation layouts followed by the Jamaican planters. By examining historic maps, Higman (1988) constructed a model of typical plantation design for sugar plantations, using average distances between plantation features and the average area of activity zones. He then applied this model to individual plantations, to examined how differences in natural features and plantation size influenced the execution of this ideal model within the landscape. Differences in the physical environment, such as the presence of water features or topography, alter the execution of this general model within the environment (Higman 1988:80-81). The different demands of each plantation's crop, coffee or sugar in these examples, also influenced the design of the plantation; though altered for site variation, these general models were still found to influence the majority of plantation sites and their design concepts are seen reflected in the contemporary plantation literature, confirming that the planters on Jamaica and other Caribbean islands designed the landscapes of their plantations with consideration for the greatest efficiency and control of their product and labor population (Higman 1988:80-83).


22 Following Higman's survey methods, Delle (1998) performed his own study of Jamaican coffee plantations by surveying those located within the Yabbas Drainage in the Blue Mountain region of Jamaica. Focusing on landscape use and the economic motives directing plantation design, Delle (1998:40, 106) concluded that the spatial design of the plantation indicates how the planter incorporated economic efficiency into the landscape. In order to maximize profit by decreasing loss and facilitating crop production, the activity zones of a plantation had to be constructed with regard to their spatial nearness and use of fertile or available land (Delle 1998:120-121). Delle (1998:120) defines six activity zones within his study of coffee plantation in the Jamaican Blue Mountains, and these include the various living and work spaces detailed in the plantation layout: the slave village, the house occupied by the owner or manager, the processing works, the provisioning fields, the main crop fields, and ruinate or land not fit for plantation use. The slave village and processing works were placed near to the owner's house for maximum surveillance, however they were also placed near to each other to minimize the time it took for the slaves to travel between home and work. The house, village, and works were often located within a central compound and surrounded by the fields devoted to the production of the plantation's main crop (Delle 1998:108; Higman 1988:80-82). These macro-scale models are valuable for their representation of general ideologies and culturally accepted standards shared by plantation owners on Jamaica during the African period. From these studies it was found that general rules concerning plantation layout offered by period authors of manuals in estate planning and design were acknowledged by the reality of plantation construction. Knowing this, individual plantations can be examined for their adherence to these landscape norms, and diversions from the standard model can be investigated.


23 Micro-scalar studies of Caribbean plantations account for the variability found across sites that cannot be seen from the general or large-scale models produced by studies conducted on the macro-scale level. Similarities in plantation layout exist due to cultural conventions in plantation ideology, and can therefore be found in their expression in the built environment, which was controlled by the same members of society who shared that ideology, the planters (De Cunzo and Ernstein 2005:255-256). This we have seen from the review of macro-scalar studies above. The actions and methods of resistance used by the slave populations were dependent on the autonomy offered to them by the planter and by that planter's degree of control over the plantation and its landscape (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:369). By examining individual plantations and the features located there, the landscape interpretations of both the slaves and the planters may be considered in relation to one another. It is within this smaller scale of the individual plantation that slave activity can be viewed from the evidence provided by the landscape and surrounding archaeological context. The negotiation of space, by defining new boundaries or the use of a section of the plantation landscape, was a method of resistance utilized by the slaves located on plantations throughout the Caribbean (Anderson 2004:27-30; Armstrong and Kelly 2000:369). On Jamaica, the slave village of the Seville Plantation offers a rare insight into the resistance of the slave population. The construction of the slave village and its location within the estate reveal through historic documentation how the slaves were able to renegotiate the spatial parameters and relations originally imposed on the landscape by the planter (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:369, 371, 375). In 1721, a map was created detailing the layout of the plantation (Figure 3). At that time, the slave village was near to and in sight of the owner's house, being located south of the house along a path that offered surveillance directly through the center of the village. When the


24 plantation was again mapped in 1792, the location of the slave village is revealed to have moved, now being located out of direct site of the owner's house (Figure 4). The organization of the village also was found to reveal a redefinition of space by the slave population. The first village was composed of cabins built in two rows, with their doors facing the road that cut through the village and land surrounding each house was limited. In the new village the cabins no longer followed the design of being placed in neat ordered rows, but took on a more clustered layout. The space between each cabin was increased, which facilitated the house-yard practice of cooking and socializing outside the cabin, and the cabins themselves did not follow a uniform method of construction (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:386-390). This example is distinctive in that it displays how the slaves were able to reinterpret their living space with little involvement or resistance from the planter, recorded through the existence of the Seville maps. This cluster design, random orientation, and use of the house-yard also reveals how lifeways practiced in Africa continued to influence the Caribbean population.


25 Figure 3: Map of early slave village, Seville Plantation. From Armstrong and Kelly 2000:387, Figure 6.


26 Figure 4: Map of late slave village, Seville Plantation. From Armstrong and Kelly 2000:389, Figure 7. The built environment presents another aspect of the plantation environment that offers landscape interpretation at the micro-scalar level (Singleton 2001:102-103, 105). Architecture, its construction and organization, is a part of the plantation landscape. The relationships between buildings and other plantation features have been shown to reflect the social attitudes of the plantation owners who designed their layout (Higman 1988:80-81; Hicks 2007:8, 44-46). At Cafetal del Padre on Cuba, the structure of the slave housing, a dormitory referred to as


27 barracones has been likened to a prison, both by modern and historical authors (Singleton 2001:102, 2005:182, 197). These barracones were constructed with cement and intended to separate the slaves, limiting their interaction with possible raiders from maroon communities who might incite rebellion and violence, but also their interaction with each other by separating the sexes and dividing family units as another method of planter control. At Cafetal del Padre the barracones were also enclosed by a stone wall, measuring 3.4 meters high and was probably built in response to a proclamation decreeing that all plantations in the Matanzas province of Cuba were to enclose their slaves' home in such a wall (Singleton 2001:102-104, 2005:197). The slaves at Cafetal del Padre could not modify the architecture of the barracones in which they lived like the Seville slaves moved their village, but that does not mean they were unable to reinterpret that space. While the barracones were constructed with the intent of separating the slaves, this was not the actual practice. Evidence recovered from excavations has revealed that entire families were inhabiting the cells of the barracones (Singleton 2001:102, 108-109). This example displays how the various interpretations of one part of the landscape, the slave quarters or barracones were used by the various classes of the elites and the slaves. The planter elite interpreted these dormitories as secure structures that would contain and control the slave population, while the slaves redefined the intended use of the cells housed within and used them as single family units instead of their intended purpose to separate families and members of the opposite sex (Singleton 2001:102-103, 108-109). These studies consider how the individual plantation reflects the general models or forces at work, whether the planter there participated in that shared ideology, and how the slaves responded to that model within their environment. Micro-scalar studies are particularly useful for their ability to display how both the planter elites and enslaved laborers were active


28 participants in constructing the landscape of the plantation. This is not always possible at the regional level, as variations that occur among plantations are usually the means by which the slave laborers are visible within the archaeological record as active participants in the plantation economy or power struggle. Archaeological study of the plantation landscape does not only include the process of examining the landscape itself. Other areas of archaeological study have been included with landscape analysis to clarify or support the conclusions drawn from the landscape alone. These areas of study include historical documents, ethnography, and the study of artifacts and ecofacts found within a site. This is not to say that other forms of archaeological study, such as the examination of burial practices or human biological remains, cannot or have not been combined with landscape analysis. However, such studies were not found within the referenced literature to serve as examples in this chapter. Landscape Analysis through Historic Documents Historic documentation of the plantation era occurs in many forms and is greatly useful to the study of plantation landscapes. Resources exist in the forms of maps, government records, individual or personal accounts in journals or correspondence, and guides written to influence plantation layout and construction. These documents offer primary accounts of opinions, ideologies, events, and how the landscape was viewed by those who experienced it. Historic documentation is often biased towards the planters, or European colonists, due to that social group's ability to read and write while others, such as the slaves, could not record their own accounts. By combining the study of the physical landscape with these documentary resources,


29 the archaeology is able to serve as a counterpoint to these potentially biased descriptions (Armstrong 1990:91; Little 1992:4; Savulis 1992:200, 202; Singleton 1992:56). The planter class in the Caribbean struggled to maintain social and economic power, and used the landscape as a tool for establishing their role as ruling class, social and racial superior, and economic success. Planters throughout the New World colonies exerted their power and secured their position by controlling and manipulating the landscape (Delle 1999:143-146, 151-152; Matthews and Palus 2007:230-231). This manipulation of the landscape occurred as the planter imposed their ideology of social relations, the economy, and politics on the landscape in order to solidify their position of power, increase their economic gain, and create an idealized environment (Hauser and Hicks 2007:254-256). The ability to manage a plantation through the organization of the buildings and activity areas became a widespread focus of plantation planning in the first half of the 18th century (Hauser and Hicks 2007:254-256). It was at this time that plantation design appeared as a topic in the literature of the period, offering guidance in constructing plantation layouts. These accounts of plantation design were authored by planters themselves, and are drawn from their experiences. They also reflect the ideology of the elite planting class in terms of how they perceived their economy, their role in the social system and institution of slavery, and their own ability to manipulate and control these aspects of culture, while being driven by them (Delle 1995:18, 1998:135-143; Hicks 2007:44-46; Higman 1988:81, 1998:85-87, 94). Planters were advised by these manuals to follow certain guidelines when planning the layout of their estates. Often these manuals focused on the social or economic role each activity zone played in the success of the plantation, explaining how each zone should operate within the idealized plantation model and how the relations between each plantation feature directed the


30 placement of the other. After finding a tract of land with a water source, roads with access to a port or market, and good soil for planting (Higman 1988:80), planters were first instructed to locate the works, for crop processing, in a central location with access to water for the mill power and supplying the crop fields (Higman 1988:80-81). Since the plantation was, in essence, a factory dedicated to the production of crops, the manufacturing equipment held a primary role in the design and operation of the plantation. The spatial organization of a site, such as a plantation, reflects the social relations among the people who inhabited it and the social tensions or class struggles that existed there (Croucher 2007:69-70). The planter designed their estate with the desire to control the means of production, which included the labor force of enslaved people. In controlling the means of production by designing the plantation layout to maximize efficiency and reduce cost, then the plantation would presumably have greater economic success (Delle 1998:108, 120, 1999:151-152; Hicks 2007:46-47; Higman 1988:80-83, 159-164, 1998:85-87). Once the processing works had been located, the slave village and manor house were placed within that central location. From here all other activity zones: the provisioning fields, crop fields, and unused land, would radiate outwards (Higman 1988:81). The motivation for placing the slave village near to the processing works and adjacent fields was economic; decreasing the distance between the slaves' dwellings and work areas also decreased the necessary time taken each morning and evening for travel between those location (Higman 1988:81). A primary tactic in landscape manipulation and slave control was the use of surveillance. By using the relationships that existed between activity spaces and built features, the plantation owner adapted the plantation landscape to enable visual surveillance of the crops, processing


31 equipment, and labor force, therefore securing the safety and productivity of their plantation. The presence of the plantation owner varied among each location, however their absence was usually offset by the practice of leaving the plantation under the care and management of an overseer or plantation manager (Anderson 2004:104; Armstrong and Kelly 2000:375-377, 385; Higman 1988:81, 1998:100-101, 111-113). The buildings inhabited by the owner, overseer or manager all three may be employed on a single plantation were strategically placed to maximize surveillance of the land, the fields and workspaces, the mills and valuable production equipment, and the social and domestic activities of the slaves as they occupied their village space. The manor house, or that occupied by the manager if the owner was not in residence, was placed near to the slave village and processing works to maximize surveillance, but also at sufficient distance that the social distinction between the two classes could not be forgotten (Higman 1988:81). This could be achieved by placing the manor house on the top of a hill, above the works and village complex, and was recommended within the historic manuals on plantation design. Often the map created by the planter detailing this idealized plantation was completed before construction began, allowing the planters to impose their concepts of layout upon the physical environment of the plantation (Delle 1995:18, 1998:108; Hauser and Hicks 2007:254-256; Higman 1988:80). The guidebooks written by plantation owners even offered drawings of what one should try to achieve when constructing their own estate (Delle 1998:108-112; Higman 1988:80-83, 159-164). Therefore historical maps can provide insight to plantation layout and reconstruction where modern mapping and survey may fail due to changes in boundaries, silences within the archaeological record due to development or disaster, and the ephemeral nature of particular forms of architecture, such as the traditional wattle and daub construction of


32 slave houses (Anderson 2004:26-30; Farnsworth 2001:270). We have already discussed the use of historic maps in conducting surveys of plantations, such as in the studies of Delle (1998) and Higman (1988), and in the work of Armstrong and Kelly (2000) at the Seville Plantation. These examples illustrate how historic maps may be used to reveal the archaeology of the plantation landscape. Other documentary resources exist in the forms of journals or personal accounts and observations of slave life. While maps and planters' guides reflect strictly the ideologies of the planter elites, these accounts, while risking being biased themselves, offer a chance at viewing first-hand accounts of slave activities. Combining these historic observations with the archaeological record then allows archaeologists to broaden their interpretations or disprove false information within the documents (Little 1992:2; Savulis 1992:200; Singleton 1992:65). The relationship of the author with their slave subjects, the amount of time they lived on the plantation, all affect how valuable the observation will be to archaeological study. An anonymous source published in the Columbian Magazine or Monthly Miscellany provides what Armstrong (1990:93) considers to be the best account of Jamaican slave construction practices (Anonymous 1797). The process of house construction, from the clearing of trees and debris, through the construction of the timber frame, to variations in wattling and thatching techniques, is recorded within this account (Anonymous 1797; Armstrong 1990:93-94). Accounts such as this one are invaluable to archaeologists, because they provide descriptions of methods or techniques which cannot be observed first-hand or through the architecture, since wattle and daub constructions are ephemeral, yet was used frequently throughout the Caribbean and United States in slave housing.


33 Accounts providing an individual's description of another group of people via a historical document are referred to as ethnohistorical accounts, or studies from which the development of a people can be understood. Just as their historical counterparts offer some use to archaeologists, ethnographies supply first-person accounts of cultural observations and reflect how the cultures of the people present in the archaeological record influenced and persist in their descendents today. Landscape Analysis through Ethnographic Resources Landscapes are dynamic, holding various meanings and experiences for the different groups and individuals who experience them, both in the past and present (Heilen 2005:50; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:16-17, 19-20). The perception of a landscape and the experiences it influences affect the culture of those humans experiencing them. The opposite is also true, that politics, social conventions such as power and control among classes, and other cultural aspects influence and shape the physical and psychological landscape (Hicks and McAtackney 2007:15, 19-21). Slaves in the Caribbean and throughout the plantation systems of the New World were not passive recipients of European cultural forces, accepting the cultural changes imposed upon them with their transition to a new environment and social system. As any other group, the slave population was able to interpret and redefine their surroundings, the landscape and social structure (Hodder and Hutson 2003:96-99; Singleton 2005:182, 197-198; Stein 2005:30-31). These definitions are found today in the culture of the former Bahamian slaves' living descendents.


34 Ethnographic materials have also been incorporated into the plantation studies of the Caribbean and United States. By drawing connection between the ethnographic and archaeological, analogies are created. Analogical reasoning is not a statement of formal similarities between elements, rather, it is based on implied relationships between entities which are perceived to have similar traits (Binford 1967: 1-2). Therefore any archaeological complex that is being analogized against an ethnographic example must be sufficiently related to that example to justify the analogy. For the period of African slavery, these relationships often materialize as historically recorded common ethnicities among cultural groups, such as the maroon communities of Jamaica and the traditional cultures of West Africa, or shared historical elements, an example being the common colonial origins of Jamaica and the Bahamas, or the Bahamas and the American Southeast. These ethnographic materials include oral traditions (Pulsipher and Goodwin 1999:2122) and ethnographies of modern cultures (Agorsah 1999:39; Armstrong 1999:174). In the Caribbean African context ethnographic information is best applied to situation where the Africanisms, or persisting African cultural practices, can be observed. For studies of landscape this would be the maroon settlements. Maroons were settlements established by runaway slaves. There the former slaves established their own social and political structures and constructed the landscape. On the plantations the planter elites controlled the means of modifying the landscape, whereas in the maroon communities the ex-slaves were autonomous in their choices. In studies comparing ethnographic observations of modern West African traditional groups, Agorsah (1999:39, 41-42) has determined the physical and social structures of Jamaican maroons to be representative of those same structures as they occur in present-day traditional settlements in the Volta Basin of West Africa. In those traditional groups, settlements are


35 formed according to social group, with the dwellings of each spatially laid out surrounding its leader or head. This same layout, of clustered social groups, is followed in the Jamaican maroons, like modern Accompong, though it is not consciously realized by the inhabitants. This occurrence has been interpreted as the survival of African spatial and social practices persisting through planter control on the plantations to be expressed in the maroon setting. Ethnographic analogy has been successfully applied to the archaeological sites at Drax Hall and Seville Plantation in Jamaica to show how African cultural traits persisted through slavery and planter landscape control (Agorsah 1999:49-50). This is found in the house yard design of slave living space. House yards were incorporated into the slave villages at both plantations and in both building phases at Seville (Armstrong 1990:87, 98; Armstrong and Kelly 2000:385, 390). In that layout, the house or dwelling is surrounded by an area of space, which serves to separate that home from the others and act as the location for cooking and craft activities. Gardens and animal pens may also exist within this space. These areas reflect the activities which took place there through the artifacts left behind. The use of the house yard style of living originated in Africa, and its appearance on plantations in the Caribbean is interpreted as another African landscape tradition that survived the plantation social and spatial structure (Mintz 1974:246). The origins of the house yard as a location for meals, socializing, crafts, religious rituals, and even burials, came from its past in Africa and is expressed in different way throughout the archaeology of the colonial Caribbean (Mintz 1974:231-250). Analogies are also formed comparing the architecture or built environment of the slave community to those used by traditional communities in West Africa. While the architecture of the slave village may be an indication of the plantation owner's social status or available wealth,


36 similarities in construction materials and house form do exist between slave villages in the Caribbean and traditional settlements in Africa (Higman 1998:177-178, 182; Singleton 1996:147). The plantation owners, just as they did with the spatial layout, controlled the building materials available to the slaves (Higman 1998:180). Cost effectiveness was often a goal in slave house construction, and so the building materials offered for slave construction use were often available within the surrounding environment or at little cost to the plantation owner. Features of the slave houses have been compared with traditional building methods practiced by West African groups. As previously mentioned, wattle and daub was a common building technique used in slave house construction throughout the Caribbean. The wattle and daub dwelling structure, topped with a thatched roof, is characteristic of both European and African building techniques; which culture receives more emphasis as the main influence differs between studies (Higman 1998:182-182). Features not confined to the selection of building materials, however, do indicate a West African influence in slave built architecture (Higman 1998:183; Vlach 1993:160). Besides the wattle and daub, platforms manufactured of clay were located within several houses at Montpelier, where they were used as seating. Similar platforms are found within the dwelling structures of present-day groups, such as the Igbo, Ekoi, and Ibibio in southern Nigeria (Higman 1998:185). The placement of the house's doorway, beneath the gables of the thatched roof, also reflects West African architecture; placing the entryway in the long side of the house is more common among houses of European design (Higman 1998:187). Present-day societies, located within West Africa and the maroon settlements of the Caribbean, continue to practice social and cultural traditions that have persisted since the period of slavery. By comparing the construction techniques and settlement patterns found among the remains of slave villages with those used by current traditional cultural groups, similarities


37 identified among them are interpreted by archaeologists as reflections of the original West African societies from which both groups, historic slaves and current West African societies, are descended. Landscape Analysis through the Material Record Just as documents and ethnographies of living populations can be applied to study elements of the past plantation landscape, so too can the material record left behind by those who occupied those landscapes. Though we have seen how ethnographic analogies comparing settlement features of West African and Caribbean cultural groups, past and present, allow for the interpretation of slave experiences, examining the material record of artifacts offers a direct link to their actions and environment. Through the comparison of the landscape and recovered artifacts, studies of landscape can be further developed from the interpretation of material culture. The recovery of artifacts and the interpretations derived from their distributions, forms, and use are one of the primary methods through which an archaeologist understands the lifeways of past peoples. Studies of the physical landscape, the organization of buildings and site features, can and should be supplemented by studies of material remains, in order to provide alternative realities and possible contradictions to the idealized landscape designed by the planter elites (Hauser and Hicks 2007:256-257). Artifacts reveal information as to what activities occurred within the landscape; while a plantation owner may create their landscape and designate particular areas for certain tasks and activities, the execution of those tasks and use of the landscape may vary from that planned landscape concept (Croucher 2007:70).


38 Heilen (2005:21-23) states that there are two types of landscape available for analysis: the archaeological landscape, which comprises the material record, the artifacts and features left behind by human activity, and the systemic landscape, or the landscape of behavior and activity, reflecting and influencing the interactions of humans inhabiting them. These landscapes do not exist in isolation, and when utilized by those studying the landscape the archaeology can be interpreted to reveal the systemic, and how the artifacts and their organization reflect the behaviors and opinions of the people who used them. In historical archaeology studies the date or range of dates of a site's occupation can be determined from a collection of recovered artifacts. At Drax Hall, a former sugar plantation on Jamaica, deriving the mean ceramic date was one method of providing occupation dates for the site and its individual features (Armstrong 1985:268). To accomplish this the median date of manufacture was determined for an assemblage of ceramics according to their type. These date medians, reflecting the middle year of the range during which a certain type of ceramic was produced, were then averaged to produce the mean ceramic date for the feature from which with ceramics were recovered. Also dated at Drax Hall were coins, based on their manufacturing year, and tobacco pipes; the bowl shape and maker's mark indicate the production year of a pipe. A second method of dating using tobacco pipes is offered by Deetz (1999:40) in his work at Flowerdew Hundred, Virginia; dating based on the diameter of pipestem bore holes. According to Deetz (1999:40) the size of the pipe stem bore decreased in size at a predictable rate between the years of 1590 and 1800 and allows the dating of features associated with large quantities of pipe stems. Besides the ability to date features, artifacts can be used to interpret the land-use patterns of a site. The quantities, artifact types, and spatial distribution of recovered materials are all


39 reflective of the activity patterns that resulted in their deposition. Different types of artifacts reveal information regarding how the space from which they were recovered was used by the historic occupants of that site. Architecture materials, such as nails, indicate construction techniques used at a site or the location of a decomposed building, while kitchen artifacts indicate that cooking activities occurred within an area. At Drax Hall a feature was identified as the remains of a tool shed. The feature's small size and the high quantity of tools related to construction and agricultural activities present helped to form this conclusion (Armstrong 1990:112). In addition to these tools, domestic artifacts were also recovered, indicating the building's possible use as a lodging (Armstrong 1990:112-113). Also at Drax Hall, test pits indicated the presence of living areas in features where no structural remains or surface artifacts were found upon initial survey (Armstrong 1990:106). The density and types of artifacts found at these features indicate a house and yard area, and its extent in the landscape. In the house yard areas of the site, yards surrounding the slave dwellings, high proportions of kitchen artifacts and concentrations of faunal remains reveal areas dedicated to cooking activities (Armstrong 1990:104, 124). Returning to the example of the Seville Plantation on Jamaica, artifact distribution around the houses of the original slave village, mapped in 1721, reveal that a house yard system of using outdoor space for cooking, crafting, and other activities was active and in use at the plantation prior to the reconstruction of the village c. 1780 (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:385). This is found in the archaeological record by the presence of clean spaces to the south of each cabin, outside the realm of surveillance from the planter's house. Surrounding these clean-swept areas were found an assortment of artifact refuse, from the sweeping of the yard.


40 This same pattern of house yard living was found to be practiced within the new village, mapped in 1792 (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:390). The features of the house yards at the new village are reflective of the earlier settlement; cooking artifacts indicating the location of hearths and kitchen activities exterior to the house, zones of swept space indicated by low artifact densities, and refuse or artifact clusters outlining the perimeters of the house yards. One difference occurs between the new and old village house yard designs, though. The house yards of the new village are larger, as indicated by the areas of swept space. This reflects an increase in not only house yard size, but the change in settlement layout from the ordered rows of the earlier village to the loose organization of the new (Armstrong and Kelly 2000:391). Studies examining artifacts through their relationships with the landscape and what they reveal of activity and use in buildings or spatial units, along with descriptions of structural remains and their construction materials, are the most frequently used methods combined with landscape analysis in the historic archaeology of the Bahamas. No large-scale landscape analysis has been completed in the Bahamas, within the archipelago or comparing settlements from different colonies. By understanding what forms artifact and landscape studies have taken in other parts of the Caribbean and United States, comparative analyses of their results can be conducted. In the next chapter we will see how this has been done as the house yards of Jamaica are referenced in a study of Bahamian features (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:158-162). As the artifacts of a plantation can be used along with landscape analysis to determine land use patterns or identify activity zones, so too can ecofacts, such as the ethnobotanical remains of plants used by past humans. Analyzing plant microfossils, like pollen and phytoliths, reveals information that allows the interpretation of what plant classes or species were present within a location, how those plants reflect the environment there, and how they might have been


41 used by humans (Lentfer et al. 1997:216). Collected from soil samples, plant microfossils can be dated from the soils in which they are found, though interference does occur from bioturbation or continued human activity. Upon identifying these microfossils, the type and frequency of the vegetation they represent can be used to reconstruct the slave diets from evidence of plants grown in provisioning grounds or cooked at hearths, and the layout of activity zones within a plantation based on differences in plant class or species and their distribution through the site. Plant microfossils include pollen, phytoliths, or silica-based plant cells, spores, grains, and leaf fragments. It is possible to identify the class of plants from which these microfossils originate, and use the characteristics of that plant class to recreate the environment. Phytoliths are especially useful in their ability to be identified at this level based on their morphology (Lentfer et al. 1997:217; Twiss 2001:19). Sullivan and Kealhofer's (2004) study of phytoliths at Rich Neck Plantation, Virginia, is an example of how the study of microfossils and soil chemistry may be used as a means of reconstructing land use patterns in an agricultural context. Though Rough Neck was not yet a plantation during the period being analyzed, it later grew into a plantation; its location in Virginia also makes it a valuable reference in this thesis, due to the common colonial histories between the Caribbean and American colonies. In Sullivan and Kealhofer's (2004) study soil samples were obtained from landscape areas demarcated by the remains of historic fences. These soil samples were subjected to tests of phytolith identification and soil chemistry analysis for calcium and phosphorous content. In addition to the samples from the site, samples were taken from another location deemed sufficiently off-site to serve as a control for the tests of soil calcium and phosphorous content (Sullivan and Kealhofer 2004:1662). Calcium levels in the soil are reflective of the presence of shell, while phosphorous indicates the presence of animals,


42 either from animal husbandry or the use of manure as fertilizer (Sullivan and Kealhofer 2004:1662). Phytoliths of different grass types were identified among the soil samples. The characteristics of these grasses and their growing conditions varied, resulting in the interpretation that different growing conditions existed across the site as a result of human activity patterns, with different areas being devoted to specialized activities (Sullivan and Kealhofer 2004:1663-1668). Five patterns were determined from the phytolith analysis: pattern 1 was determined to have been a garden, pattern 2 was interpreted to have been an outdoor work area, possibly for food preparation due to the presence of phytoliths from corn husks and cobs. Pattern 3 was determined to have been an anomaly, reflecting soil admixture or disturbance. Pattern 4 is thought to have been a pasture, due to the preferred hot and open climate of the grass types found there, while pattern 5 might indicate an orchard or another garden, as indicated by an abundance of non-grass phytoliths. The controls indicated that the soils to the north and west of the house held high amounts of calcium, indicating either ash, shellfish processing waste or the use of shells as paving material was present in that area (Sullivan and Kealhofer 2004:1671). High levels of phosphorous were discovered in the soils north of the kitchen, reflecting kitchen activity and the penning of animals nearby, and at the end of the off-site transect, possibly indicating animal pasturing (Sullivan and Kealhofer 2004:1671). Using artifacts and plant microfossils, the examples here display the variety of information that may be gained from examining these archaeological elements in relation to the surrounding landscape. The identification or dating of these remains reflect activity patterns within the landscape, distinguishing individual activity zones and examining building form against function, and indicating the periods or lengths of time that these areas were in use.


43 Landscape as an Analytical Tool Landscape analysis offers many benefits to archaeological study, several of which have already been discussed in depth, such as that landscape archaeology is multiscalar or that landscape analysis can be combined with other forms of archaeological methods for study. The studies examined above detail how this combination of research methods has been executed in the plantation context and the variety of interpretations that are available from their use. The interpretive value of landscape analysis does not end there. Like other parts of the archaeological record, the landscape is multi-temporal (Hicks and McAtackney 2007:16; Knapp and Ashmore 1999:18). It is a palimpsest of previous activities, structural modifications, and the ideologies and cultural practices that shaped those actions. The landscape is not bounded by chronology or to a single point in time and represents multiple temporal periods simultaneously (Hicks and McAtackney 2007:17). Therefore, landscapes depict sequences of events, showing physical representations of cultural development through time. In the plantation landscape these sequences depicting changes over time can be seen through the renovation or repair of buildings and structures, or through differences in artifact type and spatial distribution, which depict changes in use and activities across activity zones (Hicks 2007:1). The archaeologist then is able to interpret those changes and understand what motivations and forces directed those changes to occur. The value of landscape analysis can be summed up in its description as "flexible," (Linebaugh and Robinson 1994:6). Researchers are able to create a variety of interpretations from the archaeological information available within the landscape, using different theoretical viewpoints. Multiple conceptions and understandings of landscape are possible (Hicks and


44 McAtackney 2007:23), as is evident from the wide range of studies included in this chapter. Statistical models of a processual nature, post-processual considerations of social relations, and empirical concern for experience may all be combined in a single study, as they were in those presented above (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Delle 1998; Higman 1988). The interpretations created by these varied studies of material culture and the physical landscape are used to reveal non-material aspects of the cultures that inhabited the landscape. Landscape archaeology has been referred to as a form of middle-range theory. When Binford (1962) developed his concept of middle-range theory he defined it as the correlation of particular material traits with behavioral patterns expressed by living societies, forming general models of behavior such that the appearance of certain material patterns within the archaeological record would indicate those behaviors (Trigger 2006:414-415, 508). This definition has been reinterpreted to mean that any approach that allows the inference of behavior, beliefs, or cultural practice from the archaeological data is a form of middle-range theory. Trigger (2006:508) refers to this as "middle-ranging theory," in an effort to distinguish between the variety of approaches covered under the second definition, as Binford's definition primarily applies to the use of ethnographic analogy. Landscape archaeology qualifies as middle-range theory, or middle-ranging theory. Through the various methods described above, landscape analysis offers archaeologists the ability to interpret human behaviors, ideologies, and experiences from the physical remains of the built and natural environment and their related material culture or historic documents. General patterns of landscape use, as seen in the examination of the physical environment (see Armstrong 1990; Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Delle 1998; Higman 1988), are identified across sites and the ideologies behind their construction interpreted (see Anonymous 1797; Armstrong


45 and Kelly 2000; Delle 1998; Higman 1988; Singleton 2001). The economic and social or political functions of the plantation landscape represent the ideologies that drove their design (Lukizic 1994:13). These ideologies thus constructed a landscape which created boundaries and activity zones that directed the behaviors of their inhabitants, behaviors that are represented in the archaeological record. The landscape serves as the bridge between those ideologies, the activities they directed, and the resulting physical remains (Hicks and Horning 2005:283; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:15; Knapp and Ashmore 1999:1-2, 16). In the plantation context two non-material aspects of human experience, the role of the plantation within the economic system and the social relations between the planter elites and enslaved laborers, have received particular attention within these studies of landscape. The plantation existed for a uniquely economic purpose, to produce crops, whether they were sugar, coffee, cotton, or indigo, and the plantation's physical design was intended to reflect that. Minimizing costs through landscape design have been discussed within this chapter already. Likewise, the expression of ideology and social relations, and how the planter exerted dominance through the design of the plantation landscape were discussed earlier in this chapter for their role in macroscalar studies of landscape design and explanation through historic documents (see Armstrong 1990; Delle 1998; Higman 1988; Hicks 2007). In recent studies of social relations within plantation contexts the role of agency in slave autonomy has become more frequently analyzed and been applied to landscape analysis (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; De Cunzo and Ernstein 2005:259; Singleton 2001). Agency refers to a social or cultural group's ability to act or exert power in an effort to further their own interests, and is often associated with the expression of identity by that group (Ashcroft et al. 2000:8; Gosden 2004:24; Lyons and Papadopoulos 2002:7). This concept


46 developed as the recognition that groups, such as the indigenous or enslaved peoples within a colonial context, were not the passive recipients of the institutions and circumstances forced upon them by the colonizing entity but were instead able to reinterpret and adapt to that situation through the preservation of their culture. Criticisms of agency include the variation in its application to archaeological contexts, the overdetermination of the power held by the agents and their ability to influence other groups, and the problems of researchers relying on their own experiences, thus biasing their interpretations and causing the study to become phenomenological (Ashcroft et al. 2000:8-9; Dornan 2002:309, 310, 312; Fleming 2006:271-271). In archaeology, understanding agency requires the acknowledgement of material artifacts as not only the remains of objects used by a culture but as the material representation of that culture itself, shaping that culture through their significance as status symbols and the embodiment of power and access to resources (Gosden 2004:35-36; Lyons and Papadopoulos 2002:8, 17). The landscape is another element of the archaeological record through which agency is interpreted. The cultural capital (Farnsworth 2001:235) held by slaves, their traditions and cultural influences, was expressed in how they negotiated the landscape by building their homes and employing the surrounding spaces. The exhibition of agency within the archaeological landscape is particularly evident from the studies of house yard settings in Jamaica (Armstrong 1990; Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Higman 1998) discussed earlier in this chapter for their interpretations of slave culture and comparisons to West African traditions. This concept of agency relates to larger trends found among current studies of colonialism (Deitler 2005:64-67; Gosden 2004:18-19). Traditional definitions of colonialism characterize it in terms of the colonialism of the past 500 years, or modern colonialism, when


47 European powers expanded into the New World. Current studies, however, counteract this concept of a powerful colonizing entity subjugating and destroying a weaker, powerless indigenous culture by seeking to understand the forces that directed colonialism, the cultural identities of the colonial participants, both colonized and colonizer, and to understand the views or experiences of these different participatory groups (Gasco 2005:87). Though no single definition of colonialism has been agreed upon by those who study it, current definitions attempt to account for the variety that may be found among colonial contexts, and to create general models into which these various colonial encounters and ideologies can be placed (Gosden 2004:24; Stein 2005:11, 29). This new perspective on colonialism advocates that no group participating in a colonial context was completely powerless or voiceless (Gosden 2004:17-19). Power and dominance within colonialism is not formulaic, like the traditional definition of colonialism states. Current studies of colonialism advocate that within any colonial encounter a variety of social relationships may form, with each participating group holding different types of power or control over the other (Gosden 2004:25; Stein 2005:7). While in examples of modern colonialism there are often written records expressing the experiences and views of the colonizing entity, usually a European country, such records to do not exist for the colonized and indigenous groups (Deitler 2005:50-51). In order to study colonial encounters from the perspective of the colonized, current studies have begun to consider such concepts as agency, hegemony, subaltern voices, identity, and the interplay of various forms of power and resistance, as they were expressed by each group of colonial participants (Gasco 2005:87; Stein 2005:7-8). Like agency, described above, each of these concepts are used to reveal information on the experiences of the suppressed classes or colonized groups.


48 It is my view that this, the ability to bridge between the archaeological record of material objects and the human aspects of culture and behavior (Hicks and McAtackney 2007:23), is the most valuable feature of landscape analysis. Consideration for suppressed groups, such as the plantation slaves, has been growing in archaeological study, along with the desire by researchers to interpret the experiences those groups had from the economic, social, and cultural systems in which they participated (Singleton 1985, 2001). The plantation landscape provides information for the analysis of both groups' activities, the planter elites and enslaved laborers, from a variety of scales and with the ability to understand changes through time. However, these interpretations are not limited to the activities of the planter and slave populations. The ideologies, beliefs, and cultural practices that directed those activities are also contained with the landscape (De Cunzo and Ernstein 2005:255-256; Hicks 2007:8). The landscape is a built reflection of the forces, cultural, social, economic, that directed its construction, and by serving as the environment in which further activity was enacted, directed those actions and behaviors from the interpretations of ideology and social relations embodied within the built environment (De Cunzo and Ernstein 2005:263; Hicks and Horning 2005:283; Knapp and Ashmore 1999:1-2). Landscape analysis provides archaeological study with a variety of interpretive methods, allowing researchers to employ multiple theoretical standpoints and analyses from the different disciplines of history, geography, and others. The landscape is multiscalar and multi-temporal, its study revealing how physical and cultural changes occurred over time across individual sites or entire regions. Most importantly, the interpretations of the archaeological record developed through landscape study are a form of middle-range theory, able to forge connections between the material record, of which the landscape is a part, and the non-material, human aspects of culture, economic and social systems, and the expression of identity through agency.


49 Using studies of sites located throughout the Caribbean and United States, this chapter has shown how landscape analysis has been employed within the archaeological study of the plantation context, and has yielded valuable interpretations of planter and slave experiences. The value in landscape analysis is found in the variety of theoretical viewpoints and analytical methods that may be applied to landscape studies. In the next chapter the limited application of landscape study to plantations within the Bahamas archipelago will be considered. Despite the historical and regional connections that exist between the Bahamas and the Caribbean and United States, studies of Bahamas plantations have not employed landscape analysis to the same extent as those included within this chapter, resulting in the neglect of the landscape as an interpretive resource. In the next chapter I will examine past studies of landscape archaeology among Bahamas plantations, how these studies have developed, and how the Bahamas would benefit from an increased focus on landscape analysis.


50 Chapter 4 Landscape Archaeology in the Bahamas The previous chapter examined various methods of landscape analysis through examples detailing how landscape archaeology has been applied to the plantation context of the Caribbean and United States, and what interpretations have been constructed from the information gathered during those studies. These studies display how landscape archaeology offers archaeological plantation analysis the ability to interpret experience and cultural expression from the material record, and serve as examples of how landscape analysis has been applied to other regions with historic plantation economies. This chapter will now draw from those studies to investigate how landscape analysis has been applied to plantation studies within the Bahamas, and explain how an increased focus on landscape archaeology will benefit Bahamian plantation studies. Using the examples, methods, and results provided in the previous chapter as a comparative framework for landscape archaeology in the Bahamas is validated by the archipelago's historic connections and regional similarities with the Caribbean and the United States (Baxter and Burton 2007a:16; Watters 2001:94, 97). As mentioned in Chapter 2, historically the Bahamas has close ties with Bermuda and the American southeastern lowlands in South Carolina and Georgia, the locations of origin for many of the Loyalist immigrants to the Bahamas (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:28-32). These colonists brought with them African and Creole slaves. Along with these groups arrived their conceptions of slavery, social relations, the economy, and spatial control through design. Because of these historic connections that exist between the former colonies, the importation of slaves, the development of plantation economies, the manipulation of power through material goods and spatial control, and the role of


51 the colonies as the periphery to the European core are all similar, though they may vary in the details. By recognizing the similarities that existed between the colonies, broad models of landscape archaeology and the related interpretations of planter/slave power relations, plantation economies, and material culture can be constructed that allows for further comparisons with the related colonies of the North and South American mainland (Delle 1999:136-137; Weik 1997:85, 88-89). Based on the information in the previous chapter on landscape study and its application to plantation contexts in the Caribbean and United States, the focus of this thesis will now turn to the Bahamas, how landscape archaeology has been applied there, and how it might be better incorporated into archaeological study of Bahamian plantations. In the Bahamas archipelago landscape analysis originated as the practice of recording inventories of standing plantation features. Since the 1990s landscape archaeology has been receiving greater attention in archaeological studies and publications. Most studies have begun to offer inferences of the landscape as they relate to other areas of archaeological interpretation, such as artifact distribution across as site, though studies specifically designed to interpret landscape features, the relationships that exist between then, and their association with non-material aspects of society and culture, have not been executed. Bahamas Landscape Archaeology, 1970s present Historical archaeology in the Bahamas has primarily focused on the plantation context. Archaeologists throughout the Caribbean share this focus on plantations sites, examining those which were in use during the 18th century to emancipation, in 1834 for the British Caribbean (Watters 1999:88). The development of Bahamas plantation archaeology coincided with an


52 increased focus throughout the Caribbean and the American South during the early 1980s on the study of slave lifeways and their methods of adapting to or resisting the cultural forces of the plantation system in which they lived and worked (Anderson 2004:41). Studies of plantation archaeology in the Bahamas have emphasized the experiences and activities of plantation slaves and their descendents through history. For the modern inhabitants of the Bahamas, whose heritage lies in the history of plantation slavery, these studies offer insights to their ancestors' lives. Influences from African and European cultures, adaptations to a new environment, responses to life during and after the period of slavery, and other cultural traditions all persist in the lives of modern Bahamians, as they do on other Caribbean islands. Identifying aspects of Bahamian slave life and how the plantation's social and physical environments contributed to them is a major research goal of professional archaeologists studying plantations in the Bahamas (see Baxter and Burton 2005, 2006, 2008; Farnsworth 2001; Wilkie 1999; Wilkie and Farnsworth 1995, 1996, 1999). In the last chapter I expressed my view that landscape archaeology derives its use from the ability of archaeologists to interpret non-material cultural practices and systems of economy and social relations from the material remains located within the archaeological record. Acting as a tool of middle-range theory, landscape analysis would serve these goals of Bahamas archaeologists well. However, landscape archaeology has received little attention in plantation studies. Instead, plantation archaeology in the Bahamas has approached landscape studies in two ways: through the survey of built features and their construction methods, and through the interpretation of material remains as indicators of building use.


53 Architectural Survey Archaeology of the plantation era in the Bahamas has been primarily conducted as "exploratory reconnaissance," (Anderson 2004:41) concerned with locating the remnants of plantation structures and identifying the possibility of existing artifact assemblages related to the period and institution of slavery (Watters 2001:88-89, 94). Early studies of plantations in the Bahamas began as surveys intended to record the built features remaining on the sites of former plantations. In these surveys building remains, whether foundations or standing walls, are documented along with their possible use as inferred from oral histories or physical construction. During the 1970s, Gerace (1982) completed the first survey of plantations on San Salvador. Her project included four one-month investigations of Fortune Hill, Farquharson's, and Sandy Point Plantations. In her study, the standing remains of the plantation buildings were documented and their construction methods or features described. From those features and the buildings' design the use of each structure was interpreted. Gerace (1982:221) stated that the artifacts were of little use in identifying what activities occurred within the structures and identifying between the assemblages of the planter and slaves. The artifacts were instead used to understand periods of occupation and dates the structures were in use. This study is surprisingly the only study I found that specifically employs built features to identify building use on plantation sites. It does not, however, take the analysis of activity patterns or their significance in interpreting social relations, planter ideology, or slave activity to the same interpretive level as those studies conducted by Delle (1998) or Higman (1988) on Jamaica. Instead, Gerace's (1982) study examined building features to identify the intended use of each building and recorded those findings in an inventory of the site's remains. Along with describing the construction of each feature out of limestone blocks or tabby, a form of limestone


54 cement, Gerace (1982:219) listed building features that held diagnostic value in determining the structure's intended use. At Farquharson Plantation and Fortune Hill industrial features were identified as gin circles, or structures that contained a gin for cleaning the cotton crops, based on the presence of a raised stone platform at Farquharson's and a circle of eight cut stone pillars at Fortune Hill (Gerace 1982:221). Other industrial features, such as crop storage houses, were identified by the elements of crop processing that surrounded them, such as drying patios and walls, for keeping animals away (Gerace 1982:220). Other features of the landscape were included in Gerace's survey, such as the location of buildings and distances between (1982 219-220). The elevations of the manor house and slave villages were recorded, relative to each other, with the manor house being located atop a ridge at each of the three estates and the slave villages being located below that ridge at both Farquharson Plantation and Fortune Hill (Gerace 1982:219-220). By recording these features, Gerace (1982:221) displayed that the design of a building reflects its purpose. This practice of surveying and recording buildings and their construction methods persisted into the 1990s. In three separate publications Turner (1992, 1996, 1998) reviewed plantation studies from the Bahamas, presenting these inventories with little interpretation as to what forces influenced the use of particular building materials or the location of plantation features across the site. This same method, recording built features, was found throughout Bahamian plantation studies, though these studies divert from Gerace's (1982) method of interpreting building use from construction features and instead focus increasingly on the material record of artifacts, primarily ceramics, to interpret use and occupation (Baxter and Burton 2005:48-49; Brooker 2007; Farnsworth 1993:2, 5-7, 1994:22-25, 1999:101, 110, 113; Farnsworth and Wilkie 1998:19-24; Farnsworth and Wilkie Farnsworth 1990:18, 39-40, 43, 45;


55 Turner 1992:31-37, 1996:40-48, 1998:14; Wilkie and Farnsworth 1995:34-36, 1996: 50, 1997:3-9, 2005:104, 112). These surveys, however, do offer archaeologists the ability to examine similar features occurring among plantation sites within the Bahamas. These inventories of building features offer information that displays how the structural remains on Bahamas plantations reflect those found at other plantations or are in accordance with the ideologies presented by historic planters' guides. Elements of surveillance are found in the location and structure of the plantation manor houses recorded in these surveys; these houses are consistently recorded as being two-stories high and located on a hill or ridge at a greater elevation than the slave village (Farnsworth 1993:5; Gerace 1982:219-220; Turner 1992:32-33, 35, 37, 1996:40). On several plantations the manor house is centrally located, near to the plantation's industrial works but with a greater distance between the manor house and slave quarters (Turner 1992:34-35; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:221). Similarities across plantations can also be seen when the inventories of built plantation features are compared. Descriptions of materials used in building construction portray the variety of methods used among Bahamas plantations. Limestone is a widely available resource within the Bahamas, due to the geology of the archipelago (Newsom and Wing 2004:174) and its use on plantations as a building material is visible through the structural remains that exist on former plantation sites (Baxter and Burton 2005: 48-49, 2006:92, 2007b:83-90, 2008:3; Turner 1992:32-33, 36, 1996:40, 1998:14; Wilkie and Farnsworth 1995:35-36, 1996:50, 1999). Modern Bahamians associate these stone-built slave houses with their heritage, though this house form was not constructed prior to 1800 (Farnsworth 2001:235-236). At Promised Land Plantation evidence for another construction method, more closely resembling the wattle and daub


56 construction found throughout West Africa, was recovered through the excavation of pieces of limestone mortar (Farnsworth 1994:25, 1999:101). These mortar pieces retained the impressions of the wattle framework used to construct the slave houses at the plantation (Farnsworth 1994:25, 1999:101). In his 2001 study, Farnsworth completed an examination of plantation construction methods in which he addressed the historical use of ephemeral construction techniques, such as wattle and mortar. His focus, however, was not on a single site, but considered construction techniques found throughout the archipelago. In addition to examining the use of these various construction methods, Farnsworth (2001) applied architectural survey techniques to understanding the role of plantation building construction in slave/planter relations. By compiling data from surveys and excavations throughout the archipelago, Farnsworth (2001:237-239, 270-271) developed an explanation for the occurrence of building construction techniques and how they reflect the elements of African slave identity and planter control, though no other studies like that have been conducted within the plantation context. Farnsworth (2001:263-264, 267-270) concluded that the West African tradition of building dwellings from wattle and plaster construction was practiced throughout the Caribbean and United States prior to the arrival of the Loyalist planters. After 1802, the practice of building with stone and mortar became common among Bahamian plantations, though the house forms retained the features found among wattle and plaster housing. This hybrid of West African and European building techniques was the result of a cultural compromise between the slaves and planter elites and incorporated building features from Europe (the use of stone) and West Africa (gabled, thatched roofs) (Farnsworth 2001:269-270). This change to stone was also found to correlate with the movement to reform British workers' living situations and the movement to abolish slavery; while the planters of the


57 Bahamas directed the change in construction materials of the slave houses, the slaves continued to express their West African traditions through the building features (Farnsworth 2001:267-268). Studies like this, where African traditions, their expression of culture and power through choice, occur within the archaeological study of the Bahamas but are often focused entirely on the artifactual remains of a plantation and do not incorporate the landscape (Farnsworth 2001:237; Watters 2001:88-89, 94). This study by Farnsworth (2001) is an example of how, in recent years, the recording of built features has become less inventory-like and more analytical. Rather than simply list the structural remains and their characteristics, archaeologists have begun to interpret them to determine why certain construction methods were chosen and what non-material aspects of culture and social relations these choices might indicate. Spatial Distribution as an Indicator of Activity The second type of landscape analysis employed by Bahamas archaeologists has been the use of non-structural material remains as a tool to identify use patterns and activity spaces within a site. This is in contrast to Gerace's (1982:221) use of artifacts solely as a dating method. Using this technique since the 1980s, the spatial distribution and types of materials recovered have been interpreted to reveal information as to how different structures were used, the social relations directing that use, and the persisting expression of African cultural traditions at plantation sites by the enslaved laborers. Already mentioned was the use of artifacts, such as ceramics, to attribute dates of use and occupation to built features. The types of artifacts, or other material remains, located within and around a structure, also indicate what activities took place there, resulting in the presence of


58 those remains, whether they be ceramics, metals, or plant fossils. This then allows for the interpretation of what social or cultural forces caused those activities to occur within that location. By examining site activity from this perspective, the intended use of buildings does not overshadow the actual use. As an example, at Great Hope Plantation on Crooked Island a building with a chimney had been identified through oral tradition as a laundry (Farnsworth 1999:110; Farnsworth and Wilkie 1998:24). Another structure had been identified as the plantation kitchen, as it was better suited, with its close proximity to the manor house, and "more substantial" (Farnsworth and Wilkie 1998:24). The practice of Bahamians to cook in the yard and the large size of the chimney led to the conclusion that this building was not used for cooking activities by a single slave family, lending some believability to the laundry hypothesis or to its possible use as a kitchen facility for the slave population, and not a single family unit (Farnsworth and Wilkie 1998:24). When the artifacts recovered from this structure were analyzed, though, they indicated that this building's primary use was as a domestic facility (Farnsworth 1999:110; Farnsworth and Wilkie 1998:24). In another study of slave activity indicated by the material record, house yards have been identified in the areas surrounding the slave cabins at Clifton Plantation on New Providence (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:158). Just as on Jamaica, at Drax Hall and Seville Plantation (Armstrong 1990; Armstrong and Kelly 2000), these yards were located adjacent to the slave houses but in a location that offered the most privacy to the slaves. At Clifton the slave cabins stood in two rows along the main entrance road to the plantation (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:144). The house yards were found to have existed on the opposite side of the house from this road, using the cabins as a barrier. Artifact concentrations surrounding the house yards are similar to Jamaica, with refuse existing around the perimeter of the yard, while other artifacts


59 and remains indicating human activities occur within a 10-15 meter radius of each cabin (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:185). At Locus H, one of the locations focused on in Wilkie and Farnsworth's study, two features indicating activity concentrations were located: a kitchen platform 6 meters from the cabin and post-holes used to construct a possible shade structure, 6.25 m from the dwelling (2005:166, 169). Surrounding the kitchen platform were artifacts and remains associated with cooking activities, while tobacco pipes and evidence of dining were located within the space around the post-holes (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:169, 171, 179-180). The use of house yards by Caribbean slaves and the association with West African traditions have already been discussed in this thesis, within the previous chapter, and so will not be discussed in detail here. However, the same interpretations apply, that the modification of the environment by the slaves was a form of resistance and identity expression, and that cultural traditions within the Caribbean are found to share common features with those found among traditional groups in West Africa (Mintz 1974:231-250; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:158-159). These interpretations of activity are not limited to artifacts. At Polly Hill Baxter and Burton (2007b) examined how the ethnobotanical remains of various plant species reveal possible use patterns within the landscape. In this study a survey of plant types was conducted, noting which types had historic significance or documented uses and their position near to the remains of the built structures (Baxter and Burton 2007b:112-116). Seven types of plants used traditionally for medicinal purposes, such as Cassytha filiformis Love Vine, and Bryophyllum pinnatum Life Leaf, were located near to the slave houses, suggesting the existence of medicinal herb gardens within the house yard areas of the slave dwellings at Polly Hill (Baxter and Burton 2007b:114-115). Also near to the building remains of the great house, kitchen, plantation office,


60 and storage platform, was Guaiacum officinale or Lignum vitae. Though these buildings were all used by the planter, the planting of Lignum vitae is a West African tradition from the Obeah folk religion (Baxter and Burton 2007b:116). Why this occurred was not interpreted within the report, however the presence of medicinal herbs and mystical plants near to the plantation structures contributes to their interpretation as locations of slave activity. These are only a few examples of how the material record has been applied to the study of landscape. Though Bahamas archaeologists focus heavily on the use and interpretation of ceramics in their studies (Watters 2001:90), other parts of the archaeological record are resources through which human activity can be analyzed. From these examples, the interpretation of planter/slave relations, West African cultural traditions and their expression, and the general interpretation of activities have been applied to the study of the Bahamas plantation landscape and show how these studies might continue to progress as methods of interpreting the non-material cultural elements of plantation life. The studies presented here were categorized into two groups based on how landscape analysis was approached and executed. Within the Bahamas, studies of plantation archaeology have consistently fallen within these two groups, those that use the built environment to interpret the occurrence of activity, and those that use the material record to interpret the use of built structures. Only recently have these studies broken away from the survey techniques that originated landscape studies in the Bahamas and begun to interpret the non-material forces directing how landscape was used. It is my view that studies of the Bahamian plantation system must continue to develop these methods and begin to interpret not only how landscape was used but how the use of the landscape, or the forces of ideology and agency directing its use, influenced the activities that took place there. The landscape is not a static backdrop for human


61 activity (Hicks and Horning 2005:283; Lukezic 1994:13). It is an active agent in the creation of boundaries, the expression of identities, and the statement of ideologies by its inhabitants, it is molded to reflect those forces and thereby imposes them upon the people within that landscape (Knapp and Ashmore 1999:2; Lukezic 1994:13). In this next section, the future of landscape archaeology in the Bahamas will be examined. Future Directions for Bahamas Landscape Archaeology Several studies included here display how, in recent works such as Farnsworth's (2001) consideration of social relations and construction methods, and Wilkie and Farnsworth's (2005) examination of house yard spaces at Clifton, the archaeological study of the Bahamas has begun to consider the landscape at the same interpretive level as the examples given in the previous chapter of studies throughout the Caribbean and United States. Despite these few examples, the majority of Bahamas plantations studies encounters the landscape as a backdrop in which human activities occurred, by only interpreting what activities occurred within a space, but not considering how those spaces influenced those activities or their related experiences (Knapp and Ashmore 1999:2). It is my opinion that studies in Bahamas plantation archaeology do not use the landscape to its fullest potential as an archaeological resource. In order to remedy this, future archaeological projects examining the Bahamian plantation context must include landscape analysis within the planned research goals. Employing the landscape would offer archaeologists another method by which to examine the plantation context, due to the reasons listed in Chapter 3 of this thesis. The landscape is not only a physical entity, serving as a location or backdrop for human activity (Hicks and Horning 2005:283; Lukezic 1994:13). It is an active force, constructed by and conveying the social and


62 cultural meanings behind the activities the landscape houses. Because of this, archaeological interpretations incorporating landscape analysis are more holistic, connecting the material record and related past human activities to the landscape, and through the landscape to other forms of archaeological evidence. The variety of studies discussed within Chapter 3, as examples of landscape analysis among plantation studies, demonstrates how this is possible, bridging across archaeological evidence and nonmaterial behaviors or beliefs (Hicks and Horning 2005:283; Hicks and McAtackney 2007:15; Knapp and Ashmore 1999:1-2, 16. In the Bahamas future studies in landscape analysis must also consider not only the presence of built features, but also what those features represent. The spatial relationships between those buildings and other archaeological materials, the order and layout of individual structures, and the location of activity zones must all be investigated, and from them interpretations may be formed concerning social or cultural elements, such as planter/slave relations, displays of status, agency, and slave resistance or the persistence of traditional African cultural practices (Agorsah 1999:39; Armstrong 1999:174; Farnsworth 1996:19), all of which have been discussed within the previous chapter. In conducting these studies, information from individual plantations may then be compared against sites from other Caribbean islands or former British mainland colonies, such as those in the southeastern United States (Baxter and Burton 2007a:16; Watters 2001:94, 97). The historic connections of the Bahamas to the American Southeast and rest of the Caribbean not only validates such comparisons, but necessitates them (Baxter and Burton 2007a:16). From this, general patterns of plantation layout and other landscape elements, such as forms of slave resistance, may be formed and compared with other plantation sites outside the Bahamas, allowing a broad understanding of slavery and plantation life within the region.


63 Cross-regional studies are not the only forms of comparative analysis I believe are required of Bahamas plantation archaeology. Archaeologists within the Bahamas should also compare work done across the archipelago, in the Bahamas and the Turks and Caicos Islands, which were combined historically as a single colony during the plantation period (Craton and Saunders 1992:189). Analyses of individual plantation sites provide interpretations of the slave and planters' experiences that then must be compared with other sites in the archipelago. Doing so, comparing sites on and between individual islands, would allow the construction of interpretations that reveal the plantation experience as it existed within the Bahamas. I present here a study by Paul Farnsworth (1996) on ceramics distributions across Bahamian plantations, as a rare example of how the landscape has been employed in Bahamas plantations archaeology as a subject for comparative analysis between Bahamian islands and other plantation regions. This study used the material record, ceramics and tobacco pipes, to interpret how location within the larger region, or macroscalar landscape, influenced resource acquisition and social relations for those who inhabited the plantation. This study does not examine explicitly the layout of built features or activity zones among individual plantations, and instead analyzes the role of the plantation, Wade's Green on North Caicos, within the broader regional model of plantation systems by comparing a general pattern of ceramics assemblages to those found on islands with limited access to imported resources. Though this study is thirteen years old, it achieved a depth of investigation into the role of landscape that has not been applied to other Bahamas studies, before or since. This study (Farnsworth 1996) was selected because it incorporated each important aspect of landscape analysis discussed in Chapter 3: a range of scales, the ability to apply landscape analysis to various archaeological materials and investigative methods, and the possible interpretation of


64 nonmaterial cultural elements, such as culture and social relations. This study employed artifactual remains of the archaeological record, examining the distribution of ceramics across the archipelago and the greater British colonial region. The artifactual record, especially ceramic remains, are a primary resource and focus of archaeological study in the Bahamas. Farnsworth's (1996) study displays how these remains reflect more than just building use, but connect to larger elements of plantation landscape at a variety of scales. Ceramics distribution is examined within the landscape of an individual plantation, Wade's Green, and also from general patterns found among plantations located in a different region, the American Southeast. Within the landscape are not only physical structures, but also social, economic, and cultural structures, and both, the physical and nonmaterial, influence and shape the other. This interaction is examined within Farnsworth's (1996) study of Wade's Green. The effect of landscape, as the location of a plantation, resulted in differences across plantations in how planter/slave relations were expressed through the material record and the ability of these social groups to access necessary resources. By comparing the ceramics distributions and effect of landscape on plantation social elements, Farnsworth (1996) examined the landscape at the macroscalar level, a rarity in Bahamas plantation studies. Comparative analyses of plantation archaeology across regions are still uncommon within the Caribbean, and for the Bahamas to have been included in such a study is, in my opinion, a major display of the potential for landscape analysis there. This study compares plantation contexts from within the Bahamas, and uses findings from other plantations, external to the Bahamas, to establish a general pattern of ceramics distributions and understand the social and economic causes for existing differences between the two examples from the Bahamas archipelago. Drawing on the interactions between the islands and the concept of core-periphery relations, this study (Farnsworth 1996) revealed


65 how the location of a plantation within the broad landscape of the archipelago affected slave access to goods due to planter control. By examining the locations of these plantations, Farnsworth (1996) displayed how the model of core-periphery economic relations applies to the Bahamas and was influenced by the physical landscape. The model of core-periphery relations, as presented in World Systems Theory, is one in which the binary of core and periphery exist through a series of relations and the structured growth of inequality (Champion 1995). The differences separating the core from the periphery are spatial and cultural. In the colonialism of the past 500 years the core is often a location in Western Europe, while the peripheries are the American, African, and Asian colonies. This concept of core-periphery relations is derived from the geographical theory of central places, which models settlements based on distance and resources (Champion 1995:3). The core is a central place of importance for the colonizing culture and holds power over the people and resources within the periphery, while the periphery exists to provide goods and resources to the core, and to consume the goods the core produces (Champion 1995:2-3; Gasco 2005:72; Gosden 2004:12; Wallerstein 1974). There may, at times, be multiple areas acting as cores for a network of peripheries, yet these pseudo-cores are peripheries themselves; this occurrence, however, can be more easily explained by including another category in this model, the semi-periphery. The semi-periphery is a middle zone, spatially or economically, which serves as a link between the tradition core and periphery (Champion 1995:16). The semi-periphery mediates pressure between the core and periphery, while controlling the resource exchange between the two. A periphery is defined as a region or settlement that is distanced spatially from the core and serves to provide the core and its population with goods and resources, usually obtained


66 through the exploitation of the periphery's population (Wallerstein 1974). It has been characterized as being less advanced, economically and technologically, than the core (Champion 1995:2-5). In the binary of the core-periphery model, the periphery is often seen as the recipient of culture and technological advances emanating from the core, with the periphery only returning the goods and resources for which the core dominates it. This is a unilinear model of cultural diffusion that perpetuates the concept of the cultural superiority of the dominating society, while disregarding the agency of the dominated periphery (Cheung-Blunden and Juang 2008:30; Stein 2005:8). In recent work the ability of the periphery to reinterpret the culture of the core has begun to be recognized as an active force in colonial dialogue (Hall 1999:10-12; Hodder and Hutson 2003:99-101). In the Bahamas, the economic and social boundaries between the colonial core and periphery are easily located within the archaeology, by interpreting resource distribution across the landscape and from the physical boundaries that exist between the islands. For the colonial Bahamas, the core would have been represented by the city of London, the capital of England and the developing British Empire. London, being both the economic and political center of the British colonial system, directed proprietary charter grants permitting the founding of colonies, Loyalist land grants to establish plantations within the Bahamas, and even determined who ruled the Bahamas as its governor (Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:20-21). Governmental trade regulations passed over the British colonies, dictating who the colonies could trade with and the taxes they were expected to pay, influenced the plantation system as it developed in the Bahamas and controlled the availability of resources imported to its inhabitants (Farnsworth 1996:2-3). During the Loyalist period the only international port located within the Bahamas was Nassau, the capital since 1670 (Lawlor and Lawlor 2008:25). Nassau, as the capital, represented


67 and regulated the rest of the islands in the archipelago, and all arriving goods passed through its port, where they were taxed and processed before being distributed to markets and other Bahamian islands (Farnsworth 1996:3). The semi-periphery, serving as an economic and political buffer between the Bahamas and the London core, was represented by Nassau, because of its control over imported and exported goods, and the whole island of New Providence, due to the easy access its inhabitants had to the ports and its resources. The periphery of the Bahamas colony included the remaining islands. The islands of the Bahamas satisfy the definition of periphery in that they are separated spatially from London and Nassau. And though the islands were not great producers of one staple product they exported timber, salt, cotton, and other items, such as salvaged goods from wrecks, to London and the other British colonies (Craton 1997:150; Craton and Saunders 1992:86-89; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005:17). The labor of the enslaved population was exploited to produce these goods, as a plantation colony during the Loyalist period. Using this model of core-periphery interaction, Farnsworth (1996) formed a comparison of product availability between Bahamian islands with direct access to the main port at Nassau and the Out islands. This comparative study of ceramic availability included plantations at Wade's Green on North Caicos in the Turks and Caicos and Promised Land Plantation on New Providence. He then compared the assemblages to those recovered at plantations in Georgia, in an effort to see how distance from plantation to port influenced the availability of certain types of ceramics. Farnsworth (1996:7) justifies this comparison by invoking the shared historical relationships between the two regions. By forming this comparison Farnsworth (1996:7, 18) found that the ceramics assemblage recovered at Wade's Green was unlike those found at Promised Land or in Georgia.


68 Plantations throughout the Bahamas archipelago were isolated from the main port at Nassau, which served as the mercantile center for the colony. Home to the only customs house through the 18th century, all imports passed through Nassau before arriving on the other islands (Farnsworth 1996;1-3). In order to test how the distance between a plantation and the port at Nassau influenced resource availability, Farnsworth (1996:2, 18-20) determined that similarities between Bahamas plantation assemblages would indicate difficulties in the colony obtaining goods, while differences between the plantations, Wade's Green and Promised Land, would reveal how the regional landscape influenced trade and resource acquisition among the Bahamian islands. What was found were not only differences between Wade's Green and the other plantations' slave assemblages, but similarities occurred among the ceramics belonging to the slaves at Wade's Green and the planter, Wade Stubbs. This connection between the landscape of Wade's Green and the ceramics assemblage, through the distribution of the artifacts among the planter's house and slave village, revealed that from the shape and function analysis of the ceramics at Wade's Green the slaves and planter were using similar quantities of ceramic types (Farnsworth 1996:7). These percentages can be seen in Table 1. These findings indicate that the slave assemblage at Wade's Green more closely represents the typical planter assemblage, when compared with those found at the other plantations (Farnsworth 1996:8). This comparison has been copied in Table 2.


69 Ware Type Planter Slave Flatware 31.8 47.7 Hollowware 34.1 29.5 Soup 1.6 1.1 Serving 3.1 5.7 Tea/Coffee 7.0 5.7 Storage Vessel 14.0 3.4 Unidentified 8.5 6.8 Total 100 100 Table 1. Percentages of Ceramic Shape/Function Analysis at Wade's Green, North Caicos. Adapted from Farnsworth 1996, Table 1. Sample sizes: planter (n = 129), slave (n = 88).


70 Region Plantation Planter Slave Bahamas Wade's Green 51.8 38.2 Promised Land 0 65.0 Georgia Cannon's Point 45.6 61.6 Sinclair 44.1 71.4 Pike's Bluff 64.8 0 Kings Bay 45.1 51.9 Jones 0 81.0 Butler Island 0 80.0 Harmony Hall 0 48.6 James King Plantation 0 60.7 South Carolina Yaughan (1740-1790) 0 93.1 Yaughan (1780-1820) 0 82.3 Curriboo (1740-1800) 0 94.1 Virginia Monticello 40.0 approx. 20-40 Bray's Littletown 66.0 0 Littletown Quarter 0 68.0 Kingsmill 0 63.0 North 0 65.0 Table 2: Percentage of hollowware in assemblages. Adapted from Farnsworth 1996, Table 2. Hollowware + Flatware = 100%.


71 By consulting historic newspaper advertisements from the Bahama Gazette published in Nassau around the turn of the 19th century, Farnsworth (1996:11) found that pre-packed cartons of ceramics were being sold at that time and concluded that to be the cause of the dissimilarities between the Wade's Green assemblage and others found at plantations with easy access to markets, where the planters could travel to select their slaves' goods at little cost to themselves. The planters, regardless of their location, sought to cheaply supply their enslaved laborers with necessary goods. At locations where the planter could travel to markets, cost was diminished by selecting cheap, undecorated ceramic wares, while on Out Island plantations, such as Wade's Green, the availability of pre-packed crates of ceramics allowed the planter to purchase ceramics for both their families and their laborers without the cost of travel. These difficulties in obtaining goods and the related planter control over the availability of certain material goods was not limited to ceramic vessels and was reflected in other types of artifacts. The occurrence of tobacco related artifacts, such as pipes, at Wade's Green was limited to the planter, his staff of managers, and possibly a few kitchen slaves, based on the locations in which those items were found. At Promised Land, with its easy access to Nassau, tobacco related artifacts composed nearly 14% of the total slave assemblage (Farnsworth 1996:18). Farnsworth (1996:19) concluded that it was the distance between Nassau and the islands of the archipelago that affected the availability of certain imported goods. The landscape of the plantation, with its different activity zones of planter house and slave village, and the location of that individual landscape within the larger region of the archipelago, affected the ability of the slaves and planter to acquired resources, resulting in different patterns of artifact use. This study revealed differences in ceramic, and other artifact, availability for slaves living in locations without direct access to a main port and its related markets, and also displays how useful such


72 comparative analyses can be to the study of plantation archaeology (Farnsworth 1996; Hauser 2009). This study by Farnsworth (1996) serves as an example of how the landscape has been employed in Bahamas plantations archaeology as a method for comparative analysis between Bahamian islands and other plantation regions. This study used the material record, ceramics and tobacco pipes, to interpret how location influenced resource acquisition and social relations for those who inhabited the plantation. This study does not examine explicitly the plantation layout of built features or activity zones, and instead analyzes the role of the plantation, Wade's Green on North Caicos, within the broader regional model of plantation systems by comparing a general pattern of ceramics assemblages to those found on islands with limited access to imported resources. This study also interprets social relations among the plantation inhabitants by examining how the distribution of ceramics and other goods, such as tobacco related items, reflected the differences in social status between the elite planters and enslaved laborers. Even at locations where the ceramics assemblages used by each social group contained many similarities the planter exerted their elite status and role as plantation owner through the acquisition of fine or expensive porcelains and ceramics for their personal use and through their control over access to other resources, in this example tobacco products (Farnsworth 1996:19). In multiple studies throughout Jamaica and Cuba landscape analysis has been successfully applied to the plantation context in an effort to examine the exchange of power and resistance between planters and slaves, the role of slave resistance and agency in expressing West African traditions or subverting the plantation system (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Singleton 2001), and forces, such as economic systems and cultural ideologies (Anonymous


73 1797; Armstrong 1990; Delle 1998; Higman 1988), in shaping the activities and experiences of the plantation inhabitants. While studies in the Bahamas have begun to achieve this level of interpretation through other methods of archaeological analysis, such as in Wilkie's (1999) study of slaves and their expression of identity and autonomy through the selection of purchased ceramics, the landscape is not often the focus of these analyses. By developing an increased focus on landscape archaeology and its variety of uses and applications to the plantation context, archaeologists in the Bahamas will be able to achieve a greater degree of interpretation in their archeological conclusions of plantation activities, planter/slave relations, and the cultural and social forces directing them. Within the examples presented in Chapter 3, landscape analysis was used to infer non-material cultural and social elements that influenced or directed human activities on the plantations. The interaction of power and resistance between planters and slaves, the expression of social status and cultural tradition, and the existence of these forces within the material culture were analyzed from the remains located within the plantation landscapes (Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Delle 1998; Hicks 2007; Higman 1988, 1998; Singleton 2001). This can be achieved in the Bahamas when the current studies of artifacts that are so prevalent in Bahamas archaeology begin to include the analysis of landscape as it relates to those artifactual remains. These remains are products of behavior, activities, and cultural forces, and they must be examined along with the landscape that surrounds them. Although I advocate this increase in landscape study, there may be difficulties inhibiting the execution of such projects within the Bahamas. In Chapter 2, the discussion of Bahamas history, the failure of the cotton plantations caused many planters to leave their estates or convert them to new enterprises, such as farming livestock or goods for local use (Johnson 1996:27).


74 The changes to the plantation landscape that occurred as a result of these events may inhibit the locating of activity zones by archaeologists. Cotton plantation designs were not as complex as those used on sugar plantations. This was due to the relatively simple requirements of processing cotton (Higman 1988:192). Continued use of the plantations by the Bahamian islanders also presents difficulties in locating former activity zones within the plantation landscape, as they may have been altered through continued use of buildings, the removal of stone for construction of other dwellings or walls, or the practice by islanders of cultivating small gardens on the locations of former plantations. Historical maps depicting plantation layout do not exist in the high numbers that are found on other islands, like Jamaica (Higman 1988:1). This presents the problem of constructing comparisons between the historic landscape and the modern, and decreases the archaeologist's ability in locating potentially eroded or modified activity zones (Gerace 1982:216). Despite these potential problems, it is my view that the plantation landscapes of the Bahamas present archaeologists with a useful and different perspective of the archaeological record, one that allows for the consideration of the material culture, the physical environment, the greater aspect of human interaction and activity that created them, and the non-material forces of economy, culture, and social relations that connect them all. Such interpretations of the plantation context were presented in the previous chapter, and serve to prove that, in spite of these potential problems, the landscape is examined by a variety of methods and theories. No two studies were identical, yet all eventually led to conclusions on how the planters and slaves experienced and altered their landscape. In order to best apply the landscape to the archaeological study of Bahamian plantations the limitations presented by a lack of historic maps or modern landscape alterations must not be


75 seen as barriers to interpretation. Instead alternative methods or theories must be applied. Where structural information has been lost, ethnobotanical microfossils, artifacts, historical accounts, or general models of plantation design may reveal new information and lead to new conclusions of land use and social relations. It is therefore necessary to approach each study individually, considering how the strengths of the Bahamas landscape can be applied to its interpretation. In the Bahamas plantations were founded during a period that saw reforms in worker housing and rights throughout England. Caribbean planters responded to these movements by constructing slave houses from stone and other less-perishable materials, resulting in the remains of a built landscape existing throughout the Bahamas today, standing as testimony to the experiences of the slaves and the social relations between them and the planter elites (Farnsworth 2001:270). The preservation of architecture, despite the lack of historic maps, facilitates the ability of archaeologists to construct detailed site maps reflecting these structures, the networks of walls, and any existing activity zones, such as provisioning grounds or former cotton fields. These site maps are not only a record, an inventory, of site features but serve as another tool in the interpretation of relationships throughout the constructed landscape and the experiences of the plantation inhabitants. Macroscale studies of plantation layout, such as those completed by Delle (1998) and Higman (1988) on Jamaica, could be completed through the examination of these maps and contribute towards the completion of a general model of Bahamian cotton plantation design. It is my belief that, with the construction of such a model, comparisons between the Bahamian cotton plantations and those established in the United States during the same period could be conducted and the effect of environment on plantation design and success better understood.


76 These macroscale studies of landscape tend to favor the role of the planter in constructing the landscape, as they were the ones who imposed their ideologies of economy and social status on the plantation's layout and design. Therefore it is also necessary to continue the microscale studies of individual islands and plantations within the archipelago to understand how the slaves reinterpreted the designed landscape and expressed their identity as active social agents. Wilkie and Farnsworth (2005) examined the occurrence of house yards at Clifton on New Providence, mentioning the slaves' desire for privacy in selecting the yards' locations, but not interpreting the application of these West African-based traditions as a form of resistance to the planter's surveillance power. The ideologies, cultural influences, and motivations of the planters and slave are necessary to understand the social relations expressed within the landscape. It is a dialogue, with contributions from both social groups, and must be interpreted as such. The evidence within the landscape is not inherently biased, and holds information on the activities of both groups, permitting the construction of interpretations that do not favor the power of the planter above the agency of the slave. In conclusion, the relationships that exist between site features, the building remains and activity zones of the plantation are reflections of the forces which influenced their creation. These forces include economic and social systems of relations between different cultural groups, and the ideologies these groups share through their actions and material creations. Future Bahamas plantation studies must consider these material remains not only as residues produced by human activities and existing within the physical landscape, but as reflections of human relations and cultural forces, existing within a broader landscape surrounding and influencing those activities and their remains. The landscape is created through human activity, but it is from the intentions and motives directing those activities that the landscape receives deeper meaning,


77 reflecting those motives, enforcing boundaries, and offering its inhabitants the ability to reinterpret, and thus change, the physical and social landscapes. The landscape is analyzed through a variety archaeological methods, resources, and theoretical viewpoints, as was seen from the examples presented within this thesis, and it is in that variety that Bahamas archaeology will discover the application of landscape analysis to the plantation context.


78 Chapter 5 Conclusions This thesis has shown how landscape archaeology has effectively been used to examine plantation sites throughout the Caribbean and United States. By including examples of different methods in landscape analysis, the utility of the landscape as a tool for archaeological interpretation has been presented, and the necessity for its inclusion in future studies of Bahamas plantation archaeology explained. The versatility of the landscape and the possibility of depth in its analysis offer the archaeologist the means by which to create interpretations that consider the entirety of the material record, and the non-material forces directing human behavior and activity, such as culture, ideology, economy, and power relations. The examples provided in Chapter 3 are intended to serve as a guide for future studies of Bahamas plantation landscape archaeology. They have been selected for the variety of methods and interpretations they offer, and the degree to which their conclusions consider the landscape an active force within the plantation environment, both displaying and directing human activity. The colloquial definition of landscape invokes its role as the physical surroundings in which human activity occurs. In addition, it is a participatory force in those human activities, being created by and physically embodying the intentions that directed its construction. The inhabitants of the landscape interpret those intentions, the physical expressions of social status and power, and then act in submission or resistance, effecting changes in activity patterns throughout time. This active role of the landscape cannot be recorded solely through catalogs of building remains, but must be interpreted from the relationships between those remains and other material features of the archaeological record. The examples discussed in Chapter 3 achieve this,


79 and it is from those examples that my recommendations regarding the future of Bahamas landscape analysis have been constructed. The focus on landscape and consideration for its archaeological value in the Bahamas has long been limited to surveys and inventories of site features. Only recently have studies sought to interpret how the plantation landscape reflects the non-material aspects of culture and human experience. In Chapter 4 examples of these studies, from the early catalogs of plantation built features (Gerace 1982; Turner 1992, 1996, 1998) to recent analyses of landscape as a reflection of social relations and slave resistance (Baxter and Burton 2005, 2006, 2008; Farnsworth 2001; Wilkie and Farnsworth 2005), were offered as a display of how landscape analysis in the Bahamas has progressed, but not to the interpretive level achieved by other plantation studies of landscape. By examining the value of landscape as an analytical tool, this thesis has explained how future Bahamas plantation studies, through the incorporation of landscape analysis, would achieve greater depth of interpretation, examining human interactions, social relations, and the struggle for power and resistance between social agents as they are reflected in the environment and material record. The benefits landscape analysis offers to archaeological interpretation are many. It is multiscalar, able to be viewed and analyzed at the regional, colonial, or site levels. Broad generalizations created at the regional level can be applied to studies of individual sites, or spaces within sites, just as ideal models of plantation layout were applied and expressed within the design of Jamaican plantations (Anonymous 1797; Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Delle 1998; Higman 1988), while features only visible at the site level, such as expressions of slave resistance like house yard construction (Armstrong 1990; Armstrong and Kelly 2000; Higman 1998) and reinterpreting designed spaces (Singleton 2001), can be examined between sites across


80 islands or regions. And just as the landscape is multiscalar, it is multi-temporal and not bounded to a single period in time. Changes in human activities over periods of landscape occupation can be analyzed and compared through the material remains left as evidence of those behaviors and actions. With knowledge of historic events, the archaeologist can associate these changes in behavior with possible changes in ideology or the economic, social, or other cultural forces that motivate and direct human interactions. As detailed in Chapter 3, a variety of archaeological theories and methods can be used or combined with landscape analysis to create interpretations of the material and non-material aspects of human lifeways and experience. Processual or post-processual, empirical or systemic, the landscape is not confined to a single theory directing its interpretation. Percentages of ceramic types and concern for social relations, power, and identity expression are methods supported by differing theoretical viewpoints in archaeology, yet both were applied to Farnsworth's (1996) study of ceramics and resource availability at Wade's Green. In employing these different theoretical stances, archaeologists may take advantage of the variety in materials associated with the landscape. Plantation features may be studied against each other to understand motives directing plantation design, or the landscape may be examined in relation to other sources of archaeological information: artifacts, ethnobotanical remains, historical documents, or cultural traditions expressed within a living population. And finally, the landscape serves as a form of middle range theory. It connects the material to the non-material, and reveals how both influenced the other through human activity. Farnsworth's (1996) study of ceramic acquisition at Wade's Green offers the best example of how this use of middle-range theory and landscape has been employed in the Bahamas, in an effort to understand the motivations and social relations underlying the planter's choice in


81 ceramics selection and distribution to their slaves. Archaeologists studying plantations in the Bahamas are beginning to construct interpretations of the landscape that consider how the built environment and distribution of materials reflect the human aspects of social relations and cultural intentions that directed human activity. Baxter and Burton's (2005, 2006, 2008) examination of construction materials at Polly Hill is one such example, though it displays the limited view Bahamas archaeologists are currently applying to the interpretive power of the landscape by not considering the dialogue of planter intentions and slave reactions (Singleton 2001). For all of these reasons the landscape is a useful analytical tool and necessitates greater consideration from Bahamas archaeologists in their construction of archaeological interpretations. Applying landscape analysis to studies of plantation archaeology results in the production of interpretations that consider the physical remains, the non-material beliefs and behaviors of the inhabitants, and does not present an inherent bias against cultural groups. The research goals shared by Bahamas archaeologists in a desire to examine the role and experience of the enslaved populations will be furthered through the use of landscape archaeology, as it serves to connect the experiences and beliefs of a cultural group with their physical remains, and places them within the broader physical environment, and the economic and social systems in which they participated. The landscape is not static, it changes with and surrounds human activity throughout time. It acts as a record of human activity, offering the evidence within the buried, archaeological record or artifactual or ethnobotanical remains, or presenting it in the visible remains of former plantation structures. For modern Bahamians, the interpretation of the plantation landscape will provide a visible connection to their past and the understanding of how those remains and their modern traditions were shaped by forces in the past.


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