Friday, March 22, 2019

Schedule  
9:00 - 9:30AM Arrival / Coffee & Pastries
9:30 - 10:00AM Opening remarks – Introductions
10:00 - 10:30AM The Value of Immersive Virtual Reality for Virginia’s Archaeological Sites — Alisa Pettitt and Sven Fuhrmann George Mason University and Fairfax County Park Authority
10:30 - 11:00AM  Resource-Based Historical Research: The 1858 Directory of the City of Washington — Brian Kraft Visualizing D.C. History
11:00 - 11:30AM The Forgotten Places of the Maryland Women’s Suffrage Movement — Kacy Rohn, City of College Park
11:30AM - 12:00PM MDOT SHA’s I-495 & I-270 MLS Project: Streamlining Architectural Survey, Documentation, and Project Coordination Using ArcGIS— Steve Archer, Matt Manning, Marshall Stevenson Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration, Cultural Resources Section, Environmental Planning Division
12:00 - 12:30PM Closing remarks/adjournment

* Weather permitting, a visit to Mount Vernon’s east lawn will be provided for those wishing to see the area under viewshed protection.

The Value of Immersive Virtual Reality for Virginia’s Archaeological Sites

Alisa Pettitt and Sven Furhmann

Immersive virtual reality (VR) displays can be powerful channels for conveying engaging narratives that educate audiences on archaeological sites. History-focused VR applications can immerse audiences in multisensory experiences in which they engage with digitized archaeological data through means unfeasible through traditional site visits. Much of the data used to populate VR applications is generated as archaeological practice shifts towards incorporating technologies such as advanced photogrammetry software, three-dimensional (3D) scanning, and 360-degree video to best document sites. These data types can be easily integrated into custom VR applications. In addition, as geographic information systems (GIS) evolve to incorporate 3D data types, 3D data can be readily disseminated through more familiar platforms, such as story maps. Harnessing new data types to craft 3D geovisualizations that explore the multi-layered, rich nature of archaeological sites can aid in communicating new narratives and engaging with audiences of the Digital Age.

Fairfax County, currently celebrating forty years of archaeology and containing just under 4000 documented archaeological sites, is beginning to embrace 3D data types to better document archaeological data and convey important histories. This presentation highlights several different cases where virtual technologies were used to develop applications for purposes of public outreach and interpretation for county sites. Case studies examined in this research explore sites and cultural resource parks within Fairfax County including Riverbend Park, Historic Centreville, and the Ashgrove Historic Site.

Resource-Based Historical Research: The 1858 Directory of the City of Washington

Brian Kraft, Visualizing D.C.

I’ll be speaking about my unique approach to historical resources. Historians generally engage in subject-based research, but technologies now allow us to approach our history in new ways. My simple methodology is to process a resource by turning it into data and mapping it, thereby creating what I call a “value-added historical resource.” To demonstrate the value of my approach, I’ll walk you through the creation and results of my latest value-added resource, the 1858 directory of Washington City. To the subject-based researcher this is a mundane reference tool, but now that it is digitally compiled and mapped it can tell us very much about the City of Washington at that time. It is now also much more readily accessed for the purpose of simple reference. Each listing in the directory, previously useful only as a single reference, is now a database record and map feature that comprises – and therefore has – contexts that makes it more valuable to any researcher. The information about individuals in the resource is not terribly rich, but because the directory aimed to capture every worker and head of household, we can use the value-added directory to begin to paint many pictures of life in Washington in 1858. I will show you several such pictures.

Having succeeded in creating the DC Historical Building Permits Database and HistoryQuestDC, my focus is now on Mapping Early Washington. Mapping the 1822 and 1858 directories are part of that project. I’ll quickly walk through other aspects of Mapping Early Washington and I’ll even tell you what comes after resource-based historical research.

The Forgotten Places of the Maryland Women’s Suffrage Movement

Kacy Rohn, City of College Park

The year 2020 will mark the hundredth anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment. In a special research project funded by the Maryland Historical Trust’s Board of Trustees, primary and secondary source data were used to uncover the specific places around the state where Maryland women fought for the right to vote.

The identification of significant suffrage locations to preserve and interpret was challenged by the nature of this activist movement. Many of Maryland’s suffrage organizations were transitory: they moved between members’ homes or temporarily-rented spaces, and relied on open-air activities including parades, spontaneous public speeches, and traveling campaigns that made only brief stops to publicize the cause. Sources from the time also largely omit Maryland’s African American suffragists, leaving an imperfect record of their work.

Nevertheless, the available information supported the identification of approximately fifty sites in Maryland associated with the women’s suffrage movement. Many of these places are already recognized historic sites, but our documentation of their significance makes no connection to suffrage or to women’s history more broadly. By highlighting places both new and familiar, interpretation of this history via story map allows viewers to understand the breadth of the movement and the magnitude of women’s work that has been forgotten.

MDOT SHA’s I-495 & I-270 MLS Project: Streamlining Architectural Survey, Documentation, and Project Coordination Using ArcGIS Online

Steve Archer, Matt Manning, Marshall Stevenson Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration, Cultural Resources Section, Environmental Planning Division

In 2018, the Maryland Department of Transportation State Highway Administration (MDOT SHA) began planning for the I-495 & I-270 Managed Lanes Study in Montgomery and Prince George’s counties, a project with the potential to affect thousands of architectural resources along the Capital Beltway and I-270. To streamline the architectural history identification and evaluation process, MDOT SHA developed a GIS-based survey and collaboration process using a combination of ESRI desktop and mobile applications. GIS maps and tools are used for data collection, tracking, review, report generation, and Section 106 coordination with external consulting parties. The process is still evolving based on feedback from consultants in the field, revised workflows, and updates to the ESRI environment; however, the end result has received an overwhelmingly positive response from consulting parties and the SHPO. The map-based, paperless interface has numerous advantages over static documents and volumes of documentation needed in traditional Section 106 consultation for complex projects. MDOT SHA is exploring additional applications for ArcGIS Online coordination, including in-house projects and preliminary discussions of adapting the model for an e106 process with the Maryland Historical Trust. The presentation describes the process, challenges, and limitations of developing a GIS-based architectural survey tool in the midst of a high-profile project and the possibilities for the future.

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