Corktown Archaeology at the Worker's Row House, a small mid-19th Century wooden tenement in Detroit's Corktown Historic District, was a community collaboration with the Greater Corktown Development Corporation (GCDC). It also combined dooryard excavations with public outreach programs in the city targeted at restoring the WRH as a house museum and developing the site as a community resource center. That work, in part, was undertaken as a regular field studies course through Wayne State through 2009 and received funding from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences and the Honors College at Wayne State, the Governor of Michigan’s Cool Cities Initiative and the Local Initiatives Support Corporation in Washington DC.  


This research project is led by Dr. Thomas W. Killion, an Associate Professor in the Department of Anthropology at Wayne State University, specializing in archaeological research at sites in North America, Mexico and Central America. Fieldwork and laboratory analysis at Wayne State featured participation by students at Wayne State and other universities in Michigan, high school and grade school students in Detroit and volunteers from across metropolitan area. The project culminated with a year-long exhibit at Wayne State’s Gordon L. Grosscup Museum of Anthropology (Mythical Foundations/Material Consequences: Archaeological Research at the Workers Row House, Corktown, Detroit) in 2009, covered by Detroit’s newspapers, radio and television stations.


For more information please visit Dr. Thomas Killion's biography or the Unearthing Detroit website. 


Hart Map (Detroit Public Library) shows Corktown (1853)—in the upper left hand corner below Michigan Avenue, which trends diagonally across the map


Students and faculty outreach to the public on the archaeological research at the Workers Row House, Corktown Home Tour 2009 


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