How do we know what we know about Dunlawton? The information sources range from period documents to objects in the ground. Questions remain, but researchers have made a start at uncovering the plantation's key stories.
Among the written sources, land records trace Dunlawton's ownership and size, while government claims by the Andersons list buildings and other property lost to the Seminoles. Though few travellers' descriptions have surfaced, family letters offer views of life at Dunlawton during the Marshall years. By contrast, slaves and free workers remain voiceless people - mentioned only in the writings of others
Over time, Dunlawton's metal and coquina attracted scavengers. But in the late twentieth century, archaeologists began studying the factory site systematically. They discovered foundations, buried floors, machine objects, and discarded items of everyday life. Publicly owned and protected, these resources have deepened our understanding of the real Dunlawton plantation - not the one with Spanish guitarists.
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A "Satan" pipe bowl, one of many small artifacts found at Dunlawton.
From Volusia County collections
[ Letter ]
An 1849 John Marshall letter to his son. Among other things, he mentions Dunlawton's supply sloop Josephine - a vessel later lost.
Courtesy of Louisiana State University-Shreveport Archives and Special Collections.
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Investigating the location for one of Dunlawton's modern roof pilings.
Photo courtesy of Southeastern Archaeological Research, Inc.