A dozen ECU students spent four weeks this summer excavating the remains of a previously unknown 18th century tavern near Southport.  (Photo courtesy of Drew Conca, Brunswick Town Historic Site)

College students discovering a drinking establishment isn’t anything new. But this one isn’t your everyday bar.

Last year at the ruins of Brunswick Town, North Carolina — a once-thriving colonial port burned by British soldiers in 1776 and never rebuilt — East Carolina University doctoral student Matt Harrup found the remains of a tavern no one knew about.

Equipped with ground-penetrating radar, Harrup had unveiled a tavern – some speculate it could also have served as a brothel – measuring roughly 400 square feet and buried under 5 feet of leaves and soil. It was on a spot of land that should have been empty, according to historic maps of the town.

Now, following a monthlong excavation by ECU students on a summer field class, experts say the building probably burned down years before Brunswick Town proper, its walls caving in to seal and preserve untouched artifacts from colonial America.

Read More


Originally publisehd July 2, 2019.


Accessibility options

Adjust the interface to make it easier to use for different conditions.
This renders the document in high contrast mode.
This renders the document as white on black
This can help those with trouble processing rapid screen movements.
This loads a font easier to read for people with dyslexia.