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Archaeologists at Colchester

Cultural Resource Management and Protection Branch

History of the Department

Cultural resource protection has been a formal part of Fairfax County since 1978, when the County Archaeological Services (CAS) was established by the Fairfax County History Commission. CAS was managed as a component of the Heritage Resource Branch, Office of Comprehensive Planning, which is now the Department of Planning and Zoning (DPZ). Its primary mission was “the identification, recording and mitigation of cultural resource sites located on parcels subject to rezoning and special exception plan review.”  In 1987, the Fairfax County Park Authority, Division of Historic Preservation established the Cultural Resource Management Office. Its primary mission was “the identification, protection, management and interpretation of cultural resources located and preserved within parks and on potential parkland.” In 1996, the Heritage Resource Branch was abolished and the County Archaeological Services was transferred to the Resource Management Division of the Fairfax County Park Authority. From 1996 though 2003, CAS and the Park Authority’s Cultural Resource Management Office continued to operate more or less independently of each other. In 2003, the two groups were consolidated as part of the Cultural Resource Management and Protection Section.  In the summer of 2004, all members of the Cultural Resource Management and Protection Section staff were moved to the newly-renovated James Lee Center in Falls Church, Virginia.

Cultural Resource Management Staff

CRM staff consists of five full-time and two part-time professional archaeologists. Staff members also work with high school and college interns, close to 90 volunteers, and historical, archaeological, and cultural landscape consultants hired under open-ended contracts.

Elizabeth Crowell, Ph.D.
Section Manager
elizabeth.crowell@fairfaxcounty.gov

Liz is the Manager of the Cultural Resource Management and Protection Section.  Liz began working with the Park Authority in February 2003.  She has 30 years experience as an archaeologist on both historical and prehistoric archaeological sites.  Prior to joining the Park Authority, Liz worked for 20 years as an principal investigator on cultural resource management projects in the Middle Atlantic region.  She has also worked with private organizations and universities on prehistoric and historical archaeological sites in the Middle Atlantic region.

Christopher Sperling
Senior Archaeologist
Christopher.Sperling@fairfaxcounty.gov

Christopher started working as a field director for the FCPA in 2010 and in 2011 was moved to the role of senior archaeologist. He has extensive archaeological experience throughout the Middle Atlantic states as well as having done work across the south and southwest. Christopher's professional interests include early European contact with Native American cultures and the archaeology of slavery in colonial Virginia and Maryland.

Aimee Wells
Staff Archaeologist
Aimee.Wells@fairfaxcounty.gov

Aimee Wells is a historical archaeologist who has been with CRMPB since 2006. Her role within the branch includes managing the archaeological collections, coordinating volunteers and interns, and supervising lab and field projects. Aimee's interests include cemetery preservation, archaeological data management, and public archaeology.

Megan Leining
Museum Collections Manager
Megan.Leining@fairfaxcounty.gov

Megan Leining began working for the FCPA in September 2012. She has a background in archaeology and museum studies. Prior to coming to the Park Authority she worked for the NPS for over seven years on several historic, archival, and archaeological collections specializing in storage and database management.

Karen Lindquist
Historic Preservation Program Coordinator

Karen has worked for the County in museum studies and historic preservation since 1989. Her experience includes preservation projects in Thailand and Japan as well as managing eight historic adaptive reuse properties for the Park Authority. She sits on the boards of several national preservation organizations.


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