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Historical Archaeology

, Volume 53, Issue 1, pp 126–137 | Cite as

At Freedom’s Borderland: The Black Regulars and Masculinity at Fort Davis, Texas

  • Laurie A. WilkieEmail author
Article
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Abstract

Archaeologies of military life have made little contribution to the study of Black regulars on the frontier. In part, this is the result of disciplinary boundaries separating scholars who study military history from those who study the African diaspora. Other problems include the nature of military movements and the nature of military record keeping. In this article, ceramic materials from an 1870s deposit associated with Black enlisted men at Fort Davis, Texas, are discussed to demonstrate how material evidence provides insights into the ambitions, experiences, and actions of soldiers, in their status as freedmen and citizens, as they navigated the colonial structure of a western fort.

Keywords

borderlands military Black regulars masculinity 

Extracto

Las arqueologías de la vida militar han contribuido poco al estudio de los militares de carrera negros en la frontera. En parte, esto es el resultado de las divisiones disciplinarias que separan a los estudiosos de la historia militar de aquellos que estudian la diáspora africana. Otros problemas incluyen la naturaleza de los movimientos militares y la naturaleza de los registros militares. En este artículo se aborda el tema de los materiales cerámicos de un depósito de los años 1870 asociados con soldados rasos negros en Fort Davis, Texas, para demostrar cómo las evidencias materiales pueden contribuir a un entendimiento de las ambiciones, experiencias y acciones de los soldados, en su condición de ciudadanos y hombres libres, mientras navegaban la estructura colonial de un fuerte occidental.

Résumé

Les examens archéologiques de la vie militaire ont peu contribué à l’étude des habitants noirs des fronts pionniers. Cela est en partie dû aux limites disciplinaires séparant les érudits qui étudiaient l’histoire militaire de ceux étudiant la diaspora africaine. La nature des mouvements militaires et celle de la rétention des dossiers militaires sont d’autres problèmes. Dans le présent article, des objets en céramique d’un dépôt des années 1870 associés à des gradés et hommes de troupe noirs de Fort Davis au Texas font l’objet d’une discussion pour démontrer à quel point les preuves matérielles sont des fenêtres sur les ambitions, expériences et actions des soldats, et leur statut d’homme libre et de citoyen dans le contexte colonial d’un fort occidental.

Notes

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Copyright information

© Society for Historical Archaeology 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of AnthropologyUniversity of California, BerkeleyBerkeleyU.S.A.

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