Nye Family Homestead

Sandwich, MA


Nye Family Homestead

During the summer of 2010, archaeological testing was carried out by PARP at the Benjamin Nye Homestead & Museum located in Sandwich, Massachusetts. Testing was done around a nineteenth century mill building currently standing on the property that has the potential of being the location of the 1669 grist mill built by Benjamin Nye.

Although much of the area around the building consists of wet deposits associated with the filled marsh as well as deposits associated with the realignment of Old County Road, several areas were considered to have high potential for finding architectural and archaeological features and artifacts associated with the 1669 mill.

The archaeological testing had six goals:

  • locate traces of the17th century mill
  • look for wheel support
  • look for traces of flume and type of flume
  • look at nature of soils around site
  • look for traces of all uses of the land
  • gain better understanding of landscape Nyes lived in/ on

Testing Locations

The testing resulted in the following findings:

  • the identification of the flume and locating its bifurcation on the hillside as represented on a 1914 survey
  • the recovery of architectural evidence related to the construction of the flume as being planks spiked to posts with stones filling the area behind the planks
  • the examination of the amount and types of fill used to build up the hillside between the mill and Old County Road in the very late nineteenth to early twentieth century
  • the identification of the area of the original stream bed that was followed when the flume was originally constructed
  • the identification of several large granite pieces, possibly roughly shaped, that likely formed part of the early, if not the earliest mill at the site
  • the examination of the amount of fill located adjacent to the west foundation wall of the current mill
  • the examination of the soils on the east side of the mill

You can read the final report here: Nye Mill Final Report  

 

Nye Homestead

Benjamin Nye Homestead & Museum