miércoles, 7 de marzo de 2012

Jamestown Archaeologist to Receive British Top Honor

By WY Daily Staff
One of Britain’s highest honors will be bestowed on William Kelso, Historic Jamestowne’s director of archaeology.
Kelso will become Honorary Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE), an honor awarded for especially inventive and celebrated contributions to the recipient’s field, according to a press release from Colonial Williamsburg.
Kelso led archaeologists in the discovery of over a million artifacts on Jamestown Island, including the location of the original 1607 fort that had been thought lost to the James River. The site includes the original fort, the later statehouse and other buildings. The most recent find is a church dating back to 1608 and was the wedding site of Chief Powhatan’s daughter, Pocahontas, and John Rolfe.
Also on the site is a Confederate fort constructed during the Civil War.

“Archaeological research is often critical to our examination of history and our understanding of the establishment of American institutions,” said Kelso. “I am humbled to receive this prestigious recognition for my lifelong passion for British-American Colonial archaeology and for leading teams of talented scholars to reveal its many significant stories.”

Kelso, one of the most prominent archaeologists specializing in early American history, joined the Association for the Preservation of Virginia Antiquities (now known as Preservation Virginia) and the Jamestown Rediscovery project in 1993 to lead the ongoing archaeological search for James Fort.

Prior to his work for Historic Jamestowne, he served as a director of field archaeology for Colonial Williamsburg, Monticello and Poplar Forest. He was also commissioner of archaeology for the Virginia Historic Landmarks Commission. Kelso received a bachelor’s degree in history from Baldwin-Wallace College, a master’s degree in history from the College of William and Mary, and a doctorate from Emory University.

Elizabeth Kostelney, executive director of Preservation Virginia, noted how much Kelso’s work has impacted Jamestown. “Since 1893, Preservation Virginia has served as steward of 22 acres at Jamestown,” she said. “Only when Bill became the association’s director of archaeology was a thorough investigation considered.

“His remarkable skill, knowledge and approachable manner have given us all the opportunity to stand at the exact place where the great American experiment in democracy, government and culture was launched. Preservation Virginia congratulates Bill on this high honor recognizing his achievements and contributions.”

Aside from his archaeological research, Kelso also oversees Historic Jamestowne’s program interpretation, and he has been working with Colonial Williamsburg to have the Historic Triangle recognized as a World Heritage Site.

“Bill’s commitment to archaeology not only provides significant context for guests to Historic Jamestowne and the Historic Triangle more broadly, but also provides insights into the development of American government, democracy and citizenship, and how each was influenced by early life in the area,” said Colin Campbell, president of The Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

“We are immensely proud of his accomplishments in the field and for the recognition he has received for his efforts.”

Kelso will receive the CBE honor at a ceremony at the British Embassy in Washington, D.C., at a date to be determined.

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