Deetz’s Flowerdew Hundred is a synopsis of the result of twenty-five years of archaeological investigations at Flowerdew Hundred, a former plantation on the south side of the James River in Prince George County, Virginia. Throughout the work, Deetz conveys the importance of combining historiography and archaeology to a reach a better understanding of the past. This multidirectional approach is displayed as Deetz examines smoking-pipe stems, Colono-ware pottery, and post-in-ground buildings at Flowerdew. Through examining regional history of the Chesapeake, comparing the Flowerdew archaeological record with that along the eastern seaboard (particularly in regards to icehouses and pits), and looking at the architecture of Salem, South Africa, Deetz is able to construct a contextual history of Flowerdew in the seventeenth, eighteenth, and nineteenth centuries. For archaeologists, amateurs, and the general public, the book simplistically relays the intertwining of history, archaeology and folk studies and, of course, reveals a glimpse into life on a Virginia plantation.
"It will be no surprise to students and colleagues familiar with [Deetz's] work that he brings to this book both the discursive and stimulating style and the personal panache that generations of students have enjoyed..
"[W]ritten in the engaging style of a master storyteller..His familiarity with both archaeological and historical data and his ability to mesh them into a more complete picture makes for a fascinating look at a microcosm of Virginia history in its early period..
James Deetz is David A. Harrison III Professor of Historical Archaeology at the University of Virginia. He is the author of Introduction to Archaeology; In Small Things Forgotten: The Archaeology of Early American Life; The Dynamics of Change in Arikara Ceramics; and coeditor of The North American Indians.