THOMASVILLE — An archeological dig completed in 2016 at the 1864 Civil War Prison Site has yielded results.  

Through a joint project by the Southeast Archeological Center (SEAC), the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the City of Thomasville, a study was conducted in 2016 to examine thoroughly the historic Prisoner of War site for 19th and 20th century artifacts. Last month, the artifacts were delivered.

“It is exciting to see the many items that were uncovered during the project,” said City of Thomasville Senior Assistant City Manager Kha McDonald. “There are numerous bottles, bits of iron and a piece of a boot. It is fascinating to think that all of this was just sitting below the surface for more than 150 years.”

McDonald said that during last February’s archeological study, ground-penetrating radar was used to help guide the dig. She said initial soil samples taken showed the site would show promise.

“Our first dig was actually just to get a sampling of what the layers of soil in the site looked like,” she said. “We picked out an unassuming location and immediately found old bottles beneath the surface. Everyone was really excited that the preliminary findings showed such great potential for discovery.”

Moving forward, the POW site, located on Wolf Street, will continue to be studied in collaboration with SEAC and FSU’s Florida Center for Interactive Media.

“The next part of this project will be to utilize GIS and interactive technology to provide an enhanced view of the POW site,” said McDonald. “One idea is to include a painting that depicts the site as it was when it was being used as a prison. SEAC has some very detailed artist’s renditions of historic sites that are absolutely amazing. It will be interesting to see where this journey eventually takes us as we work to uncover Thomasville’s role during this historic period and tell the story of the POW site.”

McDonald said that using GIS and other interactive technologies is also useful to understanding the historical significance of Thomasville’s cemeteries. 

“My hope is that we can work on a project that will utilize GIS and interactive technology to provide greater insight and interest in our historic properties," she said. "This is only the beginning of our journey.”

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