A stratigraphy: A gold mine of information
Digging continues until a square shows no further sign of human activities. Then the archaeologists draw a profile of one or more of its walls. This “stratigraphy” illustrates the succession of different layers and shows their chronological sequence. Take a close look at the stratigraphy of one of the squares explored by the Field School interns. Who knows what you might find?
Seven periods of occupation
The site has seen seven main periods of occupation, including the days of Callière’s residence and Fort Ville-Marie. Take a look at our photos, animated clips and maps to learn more about the birthplace of Montréal.
Who am I?
To find out, listen as the archaeologists tell a story…
Straight from Saintonge
Fragments of ceramic artifacts are certainly the most common materials found on archaeological digs in Quebec. These everyday objects come in a huge variety and are one of the most useful materials for dating and interpretation purposes.
Time for some new ideas: from hypothesis to reality
Starting in the first archaeological dig season in 1999, and each year since then, dark grey slate fragments have been found on the Archaeological Field School site at 214 Place d’Youville, in the lots associated with Callière’s residence.
Significant scientific discoveries about Fort Ville-Marie
Learn about the latest archaeological discoveries at the Fort Ville-Marie site, in their historic context.
The discovery of Fort Ville-Marie
Since the 19th century, historians have agreed that Fort Ville-Marie was located on a point of land where the St. Lawrence River met the Little Saint-Pierre River. No one was sure about the initial layout of the fort, though, or its boundaries or internal organization.
In summer 2002, Mélissa Petit, an archaeology intern working on the layers dating back to the Callière's residence period, discovered a very interesting little object: a nameplate from the handle of a tool, a bone plate inscribed “CHARLOTE ROC”.
More on Callière’s residence
Every year, Louis-Hector de Callière’s impressive residence reveals a few more of its secrets. The discovery of new remains continues to provide valuable clues about the building’s exact location and dimensions.
De Maisonneuve’s well
The 2004 dig season ended on a real high note. The archaeologists discovered a circular pit extending deep into the natural soil. Could this be the well dug in 1658 on the parade ground of Fort Ville-Marie, across from Maisonneuve’s seigneurial residence?
The anonymous tenant
A shoe, a leather strap and eyelets put the archaeologists on the trail. The 2004 digs confirmed that there may have been a leather worker on the site in the late 19th century. A shoemaker, perhaps? A saddler?
Put that in your pipe!
Many pipe fragments have turned up during the three years of digs at 214 Place D’Youville. The finds are evidence of a habit that was popular in the earliest days on the Point. In the 19th century it gave birth to a whole industry in Montréal.
Sir Walter Raleigh clay pipe
The team’s favourite discovery in 2005 was a Sir Walter Raleigh clay pipe, dating from the mid-17th century.
A pipe with a removable stem
During the 2002 dig campaign, a piece of a pipe associated with the building of Callière’s Residence was unearthed.
Sadirac pottery in New France
During the digs in 2002, many potsherds of buff earthenware with a green glaze were inventoried. Pierre Régaldo, of the regional archaeology department of Bordeaux, France, analyzed two of them and suggested that they had been produced in Sadirac.
The Mulholland and Baker years
Mulholland and Baker, ironmongers and hardware merchants, rented 211 de la Commune from 1865 to 1878. The 2003 digs behind the building unearthed a large number of grindstones used to sharpen metal tools. This discovery sheds new light on the nature of the work carried on by these two Montréal merchants.