History, both written and unearthed, highlight Poplar Forest’s Independence Day celebration

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July 08, 2019

View full story in The News & Advance.

FOREST--As hundreds of guests explored the grounds at Thomas Jefferson’s Poplar Forest on Thursday for the 243rd anniversary celebration of the signing of the Declaration of Independence, Savhanna Long dug into a patch of soil just east of the plantation’s only surviving slave quarters.

Long, a rising fourth-year archaeology student at the University of Virginia, made a surprising discovery in the bright red clay: a pink dime-sized ceramic shard with a floral pattern.

“Pink is one of the more rare colors to see around here,” she said. “We usually find black, there’s a lot of blue or just like plain white with no decoration. So seeing something pink, hand painted and with actual decoration, was kind of crazy. I was pretty excited.”