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Alexandria Archaeological Commission Now Accepting Nominations for Brenman Award

Archaeology Award Honors Legacy of Late Alexandria Preservationist


The City of Alexandria has an active archaeological landscape with findings being unearthed all the time. Recently archaeologists working at the former site of Robinson Terminal South have discovered the remains of several historic ships and a wharf structure. Initial evaluation indicates that these ships and wharves were probably used as part of the land making (banking out) process in the late 18th/early 19th century as early Alexandrians filled in the Potomac River shoreline. (Photo, courtesy EYA, LLC.)

The Alexandria Archaeological Commission (AAC) is now accepting nominations for the Bernard “Ben” Brenman Archaeology in Alexandria Award. The AAC established this award to celebrate the contributions of the late Ben Brenman, who devoted himself to finding, preserving and sharing Alexandria’s rich and diverse heritage. Brenman was a founding member of the AAC, a City of Alexandria commission that was the first of its kind established in the U.S., and served as its chair for 21 years.

Estelle and Ben Brenman. The award is named after Ben Brenman, former chairman of the Commission, to recognize his achievements in visualizing and creating a community archaeology program in which sites are protected as resources, historic parks are created as part of the modern urban landscape, and a heritage trail was designated where people can discover and appreciate thousands of years of Alexandria’s past across the entire city. (Courtesy photo)

The Brenman Award, established in 2007, is open to businesses, organizations, families, professional preservationists, volunteers, students and other individuals who have demonstrated work or efforts in archaeological investigation, research, site protection, education, public interpretation, open space design, collections, or conservation. Nomination forms are available at here or by calling the Alexandria Archaeology Museum at 703.746.4399. The deadline for nominations is Saturday, June 30.

Ben Brenman Awards are presented during Virginia Archaeology Month in October of the year for which award recipient(s) are selected and are announced by Alexandria City Council proclamation at a City Council meeting.

Recent recipients of the Brenman Award include volunteer Anna Lynch; preservation advocate Bill Dickinson; archaeologist John Mullen; maritime archaeologist Dr. George Schwarz; and developer Michael Wilson. Other winners include preservation advocates; archaeologists; educators; grassroots organizations; cultural resource management firms; Alexandria residents; former Alexandria Archaeological Commission members; historians; and generous donors. For a complete list of past Award recipients and details, click here.

Mary Wadland

Mary Wadland is the Publisher and Editor in Chief of The Zebra Press, founded by her in 2010. Originally from Delray Beach, Florida, Mary is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Hollins College in Roanoke, VA and has lived and worked in the Alexandria publishing community since 1987.

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