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Randolph Magazine Vol. 8 No. 2

6 PIECING TOGETHER HISTORY It was a day like any other for Sarah Biegelsen ’17 as she sorted through objects unearthed from an archeology site near Poplar Forest, Thomas Jefferson’s summer home near Lynchburg. But that day held a surprise—a discovery that would become one of the most memorable parts of her spring internship. Biegelsen noticed something different about a piece of metal pot or kettle and showed it to her supervisor, who noted the similarities between it and another larger piece that was in a show box. “So I fidgeted the edges around until there was a match—like doing a puzzle,” she said. “I did the same thing with another piece from the container and found another match. That was definitely the most exciting thing that happened at my internship!” The metal container, which may have belonged to the former president or one of his family members, was one of the many 18th-20th century items Biegelsen examined from the museum’s north hill archaeology site. Being able to connect multiple pieces from the site was an unusual experience. Some of the other recovered objects included metal paraphernalia like keys, locks, ox shoes, and buckles. In addition to analyzing and archiving each item, she took photos of them to include in the museum’s digital collection. The internship at Poplar Forest, which has a community partnership with Randolph, was Biegelsen’s fifth. Over the course of her college career, she has interned for the


Randolph Magazine Vol. 8 No. 2
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