Continuing Education

An Introduction to field archaeology 
Join our team in the search for Lunenburg’s 18th century fortifications.

This practical field course will introduce the methods and techniques of archaeological excavation and research in the historic Town of Lunenburg World Heritage Site. Participants will learn: 

• how historical archaeologists identify and investigate sites
• excavating techniques and identifying finds
• how to recognize, record, and understand archaeological layers and features
• the methods and techniques used to illustrate, map, and photograph sites

The excavations conducted as part of this course will further research on the mid-18th to early 19th century fortifications of Lunenburg. The specific areas selected for investigation correspond with anomalies found during geophysical surveys of the Lunenburg Academy National Historic Site of Canada by SMU in 2013 and 2014. These features have been tentatively interpreted as a palisade line and a stone building foundation once part of a ‘Pentagon Fort’ known to have been constructed on the property in 1753. Excavation of one-to-two 1 m-wide trenches will hopefully determine whether the anomalies are features from the first defences, and provide a better understanding of the site’s potential for future archaeological research.

Program Information    

Lecture Location: The Boscawen Inn, Lunenburg
Field Trip Location: Blockhouse Hill, Lunenburg
Excavations: Lunenburg Academy National Historic Site of Canada
Dates: Saturday May 14 & Sunday May 15
Cost:                                                       $72.00                                                                                                                                                                             

Media Coverage  

Dr. Henry Cary chatting with CBC (arcticle)

Is there an 18th century fort under Lunenburg? (video)

The Principle Investigators

Dr. Henry Cary has over 15 years experience as a government and private-sector archaeologist and heritage professional, a career that has taken him to field studies across Canada and the high Arctic, Italy, and South Africa. He holds a BA in Anthropology and Prehistoric Archaeology from Wilfrid Laurier University, a MA in Historical Archaeology from Memorial University of Newfoundland, and a PhD in War Studies from the Royal Military College of Canada. From 2002 to 2009 Henry was Parks Canada project archaeologist for the Fort Henry National Historic Site of Canada restoration programme, then led excavations and surveys for Parks Canada’s Western Arctic Field Unit from 2009 to 2012.

Recently, Henry served as Heritage Manager for the Town of Lunenburg UNESCO World Heritage Site, and as Archaeology Field Manager with consulting firm CH2M HILL. Henry is a built heritage specialist and archaeologist with Golder Associates Ltd., lecturer in the Department of Anthropology, Mount Allison University, and Adjunct Professor in the Department of Anthropology, Saint Mary’s University.


A two time Commonwealth Scholar, Dr. Jonathan Fowler is an Associate Professor of Archaeology at Saint Mary’s University. He holds a DPhil in Archaeology from The University of Oxford and an MA in Landscape Archaeology from The University of Sheffield. His research interests are wide ranging and include landscape archaeology, historical archaeology – specializing in the archaeology of early colonial Atlantic Canada – and archaeological geophysics. In his 25-year career in archaeology Jonathan has conducted research in Greece, Hungary, and more recently the United Kingdom, where he worked with Queen’s University on an archaeological inventory of a 600-acre castle estate. He has authored more than 70 research reports, scholarly articles, and book chapters, and since 2010 has co-edited three popular books about Atlantic Canadian history and archaeology. One of these books, Diaries of the Acadia Deportations Vol. 1: Jeremiah Bancroft at Fort Beauséjour and Grand-Pré (Gaspereau Press), was shortlisted for an Atlantic Book Award in 2014 and won a national Alcuin Society Award for book design. As a consultant, Jonathan has worked with all three levels of government as well as private sector clients. Since 2001 he has directed an annual archaeological field school at Grand-Pré National Historic Site of Canada, and in recent years he has contributed to the successful effort to have The Landscape of Grand Pré inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List. Jonathan currently serves as President of The Nova Scotia Archaeology Society.

Register Here 
*Upon registration you will be required to sign a waiver.