Archaeological consulting company will support the nonprofit’s ongoing stewardship of Historic Evergreen and East End Cemeteries
Richmond, Va. – April 23, 2021 – In an effort to continue the stewardship and historic preservation of Evergreen and East End Cemeteries, the Enrichmond Foundation announced today that it has partnered with James River Institute for Archaeology, Inc. (JRIA).
JRIA’s previous projects include the Lumpkin’s Slave Jail excavation in Richmond and the Grand Contraband Camp investigation in Hampton. JRIA has extensive experience working with the Virginia Department of Historic Resources (DHR) and other regulatory agencies, descendant communities, and others to successfully conduct archaeological investigations of historic cemeteries.
Specifically for the Evergreen and East End Cemeteries, JRIA will play an important role, assisting Enrichmond in the preservation and management of the cemeteries, which are the resting place for thousands of individuals who faced segregation, discrimination, and racial violence while contributing in important ways to the City and nation. In 2018, Enrichmond partnered with the Virginia Outdoors Foundation to implement the state’s first open space conservation easement on a Black burial ground for Historic Evergreen Cemetery. East End Cemetery was added to the conservation easement in 2019.
“We are proud to announce our latest commitment to the preservation effort by welcoming Evergreen and East End Cemeteries’ first full-time archaeological services provider, the James River Institute for Archaeology,” said John Sydnor, executive director of the Enrichmond Foundation. “This partnership is the next step in Enrichmond’s stewardship and will provide much needed identification and protection for those buried at these sacred grounds.”
For the first step in the relationship, JRIA will work to partner in engagement between stakeholders, Enrichmond staff, and the DHR to develop appropriate protocols for identifying and protecting human remains and other significant archaeological features in a variety of scenarios, from unanticipated discoveries and “emergency” recovery procedures to planned research.
“My partner, Nicholas Luccketti, and I are honored that the Enrichmond Foundation has chosen JRIA to serve as archaeological consultants,” said Dr. Matthew Laird, JRIA’s senior researcher. “We look forward to assisting them with their stewardship of Evergreen and East End Cemeteries, and especially to partnering with the descendant community to ensure that those buried here are treated with the utmost care, respect, and reverence.”
As the consulting archaeologist for Enrichmond, JRIA will be available on a rapid-response basis to assist with identifying, protecting, and recovering human remains that might be disturbed or exposed through natural causes, as well as to conduct surveys and other studies that will assist in the management of the cemeteries.