Caitlyn Johnson

Mentor: Dr. James Davidson
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
"I began research due to a passion for learning and my love for archaeology. This is the first step towards a lifetime of involvement and contribution to the field."





Research Interests

  • Historical Archaeology
  • East African Culture
  • Colonialism

Academic Awards

  • University Scholars Program 2016


  • Lambda Alpha Anthropology Honor Society
  • Society for Historical Archaeology


  • Historical Archaeology Lab
  • Greenfield Plantation Archaeological Project

Hobbies and Interests

  • Reading
  • Kayaking
  • Traveling

Research Description

A Study of Marine Gastropod Mollusks and African Religious Ritual in New World Contexts
Historical archaeologists have studied enslaved plantation contexts to derive insight into the African and later African-American experience in the United States. One focus has been the exploration of African religions or spiritual belief systems and the ways in which Africans worshipped and interacted with their beliefs. Common everyday objects were often used as religious objects by Africans and their descendants. My research aims to analyze the whelk shells recovered from Kingsley Plantation and to interpret their potential as supernatural objects.