Welcome to George Washington’s Mount Vernon Midden Project website. This website was created to present artifacts excavated by archaeologists from the eighteenth-century South Grove Midden (or refuse feature) located at Mount Vernon, George Washington’s Virginia plantation on the Potomac River. The heart of this website is a searchable database of objects – complete with photographs, detailed summaries, and catalogue information – connected to a rich body of documentary and thematic material. This is the most significant collection that has been excavated to date relating to the domestic worlds of the Washington families and the enslaved individuals living and working around the Mansion.
Learn more about the history of the archaeological site and why archaeologists study trash.
Visit a historical timeline spanning the decades that the archaeological site formed – from the 1730s through today! Delve deeper into the documentary records associated with eighteenth-century material culture through two databases: George Washington’s invoices and orders for goods from England and merchant Alexander Henderson’s Colchester store inventories.
Search hundreds of objects used and discarded by the Washington households.
Discover more from artifact studies that integrate the documentary evidence.
Explore research into colonial America and how artifacts contribute towards our understanding of these themes.
Find out how the project developed and who contributed. Read publications generated through this research.