John L Warfield Center

Maria Franklin and Nedra Lee to be featured in the College of Liberal Arts upcoming Fall 2010 Edition of Life and Letters

Fri, September 17, 2010

Maria Franklin (Associate Professor, Department of Anthropology and the African and African Diaspora Studies Department) and Nedra Lee (PhD student, Department of Anthropology) have been involved over the past 2 years with the Ransom Williams Farmstead Project (RWFP) in Travis County, TX. With funding from the Texas Department of Transportation, the RWFP is a multidisciplinary investigation (archaeology, history, and oral history) of post-emancipation African American experiences in central Texas, and is a cooperative effort among a team of researchers from UT, Prewitt and Associates, and Central Preservation, Inc. Ransom and Sarah Williams were ex-slaves who settled in Manchaca (just south of Austin) on a 45-acre farmstead in c. 1870. Archaeological excavations of the site, led by Doug Boyd of Prewitt and Associates, were completed in August of 2009. In parallel with the excavation, Franklin conducted oral history interviews with 19 individuals who mainly grew up in rural areas near the Williams site from the 1920s-1960s in order to better comprehend what life was like for black Texans during Jim Crow, and to gather evidence that might help to interpret the Williams site.

A comprehensive story will run in the College of Liberal Arts Fall 2010 publication of Life and Letters with an additional banner story to appear on The University's homepage September 20 - 27.

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