Archaeological testing within the study area was completed using a combination of machine trench excavations and hand excavation of test units of varying sizes within the trench floors. The size of individual units was based on the width and depth of the trench, the amount of space available between historic foundations, the location of existing utilities and other obstacles, and the size of shoring boxes available for deep trench excavations. A series of six trenches were positioned along the eastern margins of the Dyott-Richmond Street intersection to expose remains of the Dyottville Glass Works complex and to identify potential intact soil horizons that could contain evidence of Native American occupation along the north bank of Gunner’s Run.
The location of the trenches was initially planned via georeferencing satellite images of the project site with the 1875 Hopkins and 1878 Hexamer maps of the city. Both of these historic maps contain detailed spatial information relating to the former glassworks and its associated buildings (see Figures 5 and 6). Trenches 1–5 initially measured 5 x 35 feet, and were arranged in a roughly linear north-south orientation along the eastern shoulder of Richmond Street to minimize obstruction of adjacent active traffic lanes. The trenches were placed in this configuration to identify the following resources: the main furnace structure of the 1870s-era glass house; ancillary buildings located along the northern boundary of the Dyottville property; evidence of structures pre-dating the Dyottville Glass Works complex; and potential undisturbed prehistoric horizons in the open space between buildings. Trench 6 (7 x 20 feet) was placed 30 feet north of Trench 3 to investigate the northern limits of the nineteenth-century Dyottville factory complex, identify potential undisturbed prehistoric soil horizons, and to aid in defining the transition from the floodplain wetlands of Gunner’s Run to a more established land surface. Trench 7, located 220 feet north of Trench 6, was placed at the west end of Schirra Drive near the intersection with Richmond Street to identify buildings related to the eighteenth-century Kensington Glass Works or other glass factory buildings known to have occupied this property, and to further characterize prehistoric soil horizons and their relationship to Gunner’s Run.
During site testing, excavated soils from intact soil horizons, as well as from identified features, were screened through ¼-inch hardware cloth. All recovered artifacts were retained in labeled plastic bags pending lab analysis and cataloging. Historic fill deposit soils were screened if it was determined that artifacts recovered would contribute to the overall interpretation of site stratigraphy or a specific fill deposit. Trench, excavation unit (EU), artifact, and feature provenience within the study area were established using total station survey equipment in concert with submeter-accurate GPS data collectors. All excavation data was fully documented through the use of standardized paper field forms, hand-drawn plan and profile maps, and high-resolution digital photography. Due to the location of the excavation along the shoulder of Richmond Street, concrete barriers were placed around the perimeter of the excavation areas. Metal shoring boxes were placed in trenches that extended below a depth of 4 feet.