Ahead of planned restoration work at the Malcolm X House in Boston, excavators conducted an archaeological investigation in May 2016. They unearthed thousands of artifacts and discovered traces of a previously unknown 18th-century home. Here, archaeologists opened several trenches against the foundations of the Malcolm X House. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
The Malcolm X House was built in 1874, and historical records indicate that there were no previous buildings on the site. However, the archaeological evidence suggests there was a home here in the 18th century as well. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
An iron jack and other toys were discovered at the house of Malcolm X. Rodnell Collins, the son of Malcolm's half sister, Ella Little-Collins, remembers playing with some of the toys that were found at the site. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
Previously unknown home
Some artifacts discovered in the upper layers of soil at Malcolm X's childhood home include a 1953 penny. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
Whoever lived here in the 18th century might have been a wealthy person who owned expensive ceramics like this piece of Chinese porcelain with a hand-painted scene of a ship's sails, rigging and crow's nest. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
18th-century hair care
Archaeologists also found an 18th-century clay wig curler at the site. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
Archaeologists unexpectedly found a wall in the backyard of the Malcolm X house. "All of our research indicates that there was no previous house on this property at all. So despite what the records say, there's definitely another house here," said Joe Bagley, an archaeologist with Boston's City Archaeology Lab, who finished digging on May 20.
Facebook users helped the archaeologists on-site identify this object as a trading stamp token from a store called Sav-A Coin in South Carolina. [Read more about the dig at Malcolm X's childhood home]
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