Historic Timbers Project:
Who are we? We are the Montane Forest Dynamics Laboratory in the Geology & Geography Department at West Virginia University. Our project members include Dr. Amy Hessl (Project Director), Kristen de Graauw (Project Manager), Shawn Cockrell (Lead Technician), and Andrew Mengele (Undergraduate Technician).
What is the project? This is an effort to provide greater significance to historic log structures in West Virginia by using tree rings to determine felling and inferred construction dates. For this project we will date the construction of 3 structures: The Barracks of Lewisburg, McCoy Fort of Williamsburg, and Old Kile Homestead of Upper Tract.
How? Our lab members often study climate and ecology using the annual growth rings of trees, but we can also use tree rings to date log structures. This type of research is called dendroarchaeology - basically tree rings used for archaeological purposes. For more information on the dendroarchaeology process, click here.
What's next? We are about to begin the first stage of our research - collecting cores from the structures. We welcome you to follow our progress here!