On the eve of its 350th anniversary, the present day cemetery of St. Francis Xavier in Maryland, reveals new details of a long-gone Jesuit chapel. Father Brian Sanderfoot, pastor of St. Francis Xavier in Maryland, authorized several phases of investigation at St. Francis Xavier Cemetery to map the cemetery and its many grave markers and to conduct limited archaeological testing. One of the most exciting outcomes of this work is the identification of the site of the 1662-1704 Jesuit chapel.
The Laboratory is based on the campus of Virginia Commonwealth University in the School of World Studies building, which is located on Shafer Street in Richmond, Virginia. The initial function of the VCL was to test the capabilities and limitations of the NextEngine Desktop 3D scanner on archaeological objects for our initial DoD Legacy Program funded project. For that DoD Legacy Program project, we either borrowed collections from regional repositories, or we took our portable scanner to various museums, collections repositories, or heritage locations to scan objects to fragile or too unique to loan. These places included the Fort Lee Regional Curation Facility, The State Museum of Pennsylvania, the Virginia Museum of Natural History, Mount Vernon, Jamestown, Poplar Forest, Montpelier, Colonial Williamsburg, and George Washington’s Ferry Farm. When that project ended, we continued working with these heritage locations and collections repositories to scan artifacts that would help meet their collections and research needs, and to create original research opportunities.