University of Pittsburgh professor Dr. Bryan Hanks has been investigating the Harmonist Cemetery with various instruments which remotely detect underground disturbances without physically disturbing the ground. This process is known as Ground Penetrating Radar, or GPR. Located at the corner of Church Street and 11th Street in Ambridge, the Harmonist cemetery has only three headstones, and those are for hired workers of the Harmony Society. The Harmonists did not mark their own graves because they believed themselves equal in death as in life. The archives hold records of Harmonist deaths, but a map of the burials has not yet been discovered. Dr. Hanks’ findings help to shed light on the burial practices of the Harmony Society. Join us for what is sure to be an interesting lecture about the Harmonist Cemetery investigation.
Bryan Hanks is an Associate Professor and Department Chair at the Department of Anthropology, University of Pittsburgh. He received his PhD in 2003 from the University of Cambridge (England) in Archaeology. He has directed and co-directed numerous fieldwork projects in the United States, Russia, Serbia, Slovenia, and Mongolia. He specializes in the study of late prehistoric nomadic societies in Europe and Eurasia. Since 2012, he has been developing new field projects that focus on archaeological geophysics and has been collaborating with local institutions in the Southwestern PA area and with the U.S. Forest Service in the state of Idaho.