Opening Sunday, September 29th, from 2PM - 4:30PM
Archaeology In and Of Chicago: The 1893 World’s Fair, the Charnley House, and the Future of Urban Archaeology
Speaker of the Month: Dr. Rebecca Graff
Dr. Rebecca Graff, Associate Professor of Anthropology at Lake Forest College, opens our 2019-2020 lecture season (at 2:30pm) with an intriguing and fresh look at “what lies beneath” our very local feet. Drawing from her upcoming book, Disposing of Modernity: The Archaeology of Garbage and Consumerism During Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair (University Press of Florida and Society for Historical Archaeology/SHA, Fall 2020), Dr. Graff will introduce her research project centered on excavations at Jackson Park, the former site of the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition, and at the Charnley-Persky House, an 1892 Louis Sullivan and Frank Lloyd Wright-designed home on Chicago’s Gold Coast. Based upon archaeological and archival research on the Fair’s ephemeral Ohio Building and a historic artifact midden at the Charnley-Persky House, this talk will engage with a critical period in the nation’s history to address the ambivalent reactions to the changing world of turn-of-the-twentieth-century urban America. The talk will cover topics including the history of world’s fairs and expositions, the planning of the Chicago Fair, the Charnley House’s architecture and aesthetics, and how fairs created markets for new products and how the public constituted themselves as modern subjects by consuming them.
About Our Speaker: Dr. Graff received her BA in anthropology from the University of California, Berkeley, and her MA and PhD in anthropology from the University of Chicago. As an historical archaeologist with research interests in the 19th- and 20th-Century urban United States, she explores the relationship between temporality and modernity, memory and material culture, and contemporary heritage and nostalgic consumption through archaeological and archival research.
She is currently excavating the former site of an African Methodist Episcopal Church in Lake Forest with her undergraduate students.
Meetings are open to the public and free of charge. Typically social period starts at 3:00pm, but this meeting will begin ONE HOUR EARLIER than usual, at 2:00pm. Dr. Graff’s talk will begin at 2:30pm. Join us!