WHAT wE DO
Connecting Heritage and Archaeology for the Public
Archaeology is one of the most common tools for exploring cultural heritage and understanding our shared past, and yet it is also one of the most mis-understood and least accessible forms of research for organizations and communities. CHARG is a research group supported by the Office of the Dean of the Undergraduate College and the Cultural Heritage and Preservation Program at Wake Forest University, focused on working collaboratively with institutions and communities to build accessible tools, trainings, and resources to make archaeology a more useful and accessible resource for the public at large. This is achieved through collaborative processes, engaged student learning, and the construction of digital tools for public engagement.
CHARG has a set of core values that embody the University focus of pro humanitate. These values include Public Collaboration, Mutual Respect, open communication, and a pursuit of equity and justice in our work. We achieve these values through a pedagogical emphasis on learning by doing and collaborative, team-based projects, and working with partners committed to telling the difficult stories and confronting the past critically. Our charge is to help people to critically learn about the past, so we can understand our present, to make meaningful change for the future.
A Community of Practice
Archaeology and cultural heritage are team sports, and CHARG is committed to developing a cohort of student researchers and collaborators to build a community of practice centered on mutual respect, trying new things, and a commitment to public engagement.
Who We Are
CHARG is led by Dr. Terry P. Brock, an experienced archaeologist who has spent the past decade conducting archaeological work at historical museums using historical archaeology to examine African American slavery and Emancipation. He has developed programs, and designed digital applications using Geographic Information Systems, web design, and social media to engage the public. He currently serves as the Manager for Archaeology and Research at the Wake Forest Historical Museum, and as a Part Time Assistant Teaching Professor in the Cultural Heritage and Preservation Program at Wake Forest University.
The Research Team is comprised of students who gain experience working on digital projects, conducting research, and designing ways to present the information to the public. Team members are supported through research funding through the Dean’s Office or funding from grants, and typically work with the program for a year.
CHARG is working with multiple partners and heritage organizations. Click below to learn if a partnership with CHARG is ideal for your organization or community.
CHARG is working with Preservation Forsyth in their effort to document every African American Cemetery in Forsyth County, North Carolina. The project includes partnerships with the North Carolina Office of the State Archaeologist, and recently received funding through a Certified Local Government Grant.
Ailey Young House Digitization Project
The Town of Wake Forest
CHARG is partnering with The Town of Wake Forest to conduct 3D documentation of the Ailey Young House, and develop a GIS based on previous archaeological investigations.
Home Farm Survey Project
The Montpelier Foundation
The Home Farm Survey Project is a systematic archaeological survey exploring the landscape where enslaved Black and free white laborers lived and worked for James Madison. CHARG will maintain and update the project page, and is a collaborator on the analysis and field work.