The c.1800 Noadiah Granger House isn’t your ordinary house museum. In the geographic center of the Castelton University campus, the Granger House is a living laboratory where university students will be able to do hands-on work designing and curating exhibitions, engaging in history and museum studies, developing 3-D imaging of artifacts, partnering with different museums, and more.
For the last month of the school year, 25 students were on-site doing archaeology and historical research around the house. This has involved not only going through probate documents and figuring out what was in each room and how the house was being used, but also using archeological techniques to excavate the area around the house in order to tell about daily life 200 years ago. In the fall, K-12 students are scheduled to come to the site to do archaeology work and study local history, ecology, and on-site Native American history.
“We’ve never seen more engaged students,” says director of archaeology Matthew Moriarty. “People want STEM programs and things that link to workforce development. Humanities work can be very hands-on and workforce related. This project allows us to do that.” A recent grant in partnership with the Johnson Family Foundation is supporting accessibility work for the house.
“One of the most satisfying things was hearing one of the students say that this experience was the best thing he did in college.”
— Matthew Moriarty, Directory of Archeaology and Director of Grants, Castleton University