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Program News

Cultural and Historic Preservation

Annual CHP conference exploring "Preservation and Memory"

Our Noreen Stonor Drexel Cultural and Historic Preservation Program hosted its annual conference Oct. 18-19 in the Antone Academic Center. Focusing on "Preservation and Memory," the conference explored the complex relationship between the past and the present as it plays out in the preservation and interpretation of buildings, objects, monuments and landscapes.

Salve awarded grant to preserve history of slavery in South Kingstown

The Rhode Island Foundation awarded Salve Regina a grant from the Joseph O'Neill Ott Fund to support the creation of a digital collection of 18th century documents related to slavery. The project, "Documenting Slavery in South Kingstown's Colonial Records," describes each page of probate records digitized from the South Kingstown Town Records office. Images and their description are available through our digital collections in JStor Forum.

The records include probate and town council records dated 1704-1742, of wills, probate inventories and town council decrees, all of which provide evidence addressing how slavery was conceived of, recorded and carried out in colonial Rhode Island.

McMahon’s monologue featured in “Talking Statues Dublin” initiative

During a semester abroad in Ireland, Michaela McMahon– a double major in English literature and cultural and historic preservation – wrote a monologue that won an open competition to tell the story behind one of Dublin's most popular statues, that of folk hero Molly Malone. Those who visit the statue of Molly can use a scannable QR code to hear her story told through the words of McMahon.

"In our cultural and historic preservation program, part of what we study is heritage management and how we can make cultural resources interesting to the public," McMahon said. "Literature and creative writing have played important roles too, because you are influenced by the authors you learn about while developing your own writing style, academically and creatively."

$96K grant funds new preservation initiatives

A $96,000 grant from the Southeastern New England Educational and Charitable Foundation funded student projects at two historic mill sites in Rhode Island, expanded our 3D digital documentation capabilities, launched an annual public lecture series and helped to establish six paid internships for students.

"The perfect fit of the mission of the foundation and the goals of Salve's cultural and historic preservation program was uncanny. This was a concord of two like-minded groups who were both excited about reaching the same goal," said Stephen Leal Jackson, a director of the foundation who received his Ph.D. in humanities from Salve Regina in 2015.

Archaeological field school returns to Rhode Island

After several years in South Carolina's Lowcountry, our summer field school in archaeology returned to Rhode Island in 2017 to explore the unique historical and cultural landscapes of South County and Newport.

Participants focused on the site of an 18th century plantation in North Kingstown to learn more about the daily lives of the enslaved people who lived and worked there.

Students complete battlefield analysis for National Park Service

In collaboration with the Middletown Historical Society, our students completed an investigative analysis of the Siege of Newport, a 1778 battle that became one of the largest military operations of the American Revolution. The historic effort to retake Newport was the first joint military operation of the newly formed alliance between the French and the Colonials.

The 365-page document is the first in-depth analysis of the battlefield that could very well have been the site where the Revolutionary War was won. The research was commissioned by the National Park Service's American Battlefield Protection Program.

$39K grant funds site documentation for Sadkeche Fight

A $39,000 grant from the National Park Service funded our program's efforts to conduct site documentation for the Sadkeche Fight, a battle associated with the little-known Yamasee War (1715-1717) in South Carolina. The grant gave our students an opportunity to substantially contribute to a real world, federally funded preservation project.