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Peter Pope

Cross-appointed to Department of History
University Research Professor of Archaeology
Memorial University of Newfoundland
St. John's, NL A1C 5S7
Office: QC 2007
Phone: (709) 864 8311/8869
Fax: (709) 864 2374


  • BA, Princeton University 1968
  • Litt, Oxford University 1973
  • M.A., Memorial University 1986
  • Ph.D, Memorial University 1992


  • President’s Award for Outstanding Research, 2001-2002

Research Interests

My major academic interest is the historical archaeology of the early modern Atlantic world, a study which necessarily intersects both social history and historical anthropology. I began teaching at Memorial in History. Following a post-doc and some teaching at Université Laval in Quebec City, I returned to join Memorial's Archaeology Unit in 1996. From 2000 to 2005 I directed the Newfoundland Archaeological Heritage Outreach Program , an SSHRC-sponsored Community-University Research Alliance, which involved me with community archaeology projects across Newfoundland and Labrador. For some years, I have been researching early modern fisher folk, and happy to learn about them, whether by reading contemporary accounts of voyages, by excavation of features at a fishing room, or by pinning down the distribution of a particular type of earthenware. I'm increasingly interested in recording and analyzing the landscapes created, as Europeans developed the shore-based, salt cod fishery in Atlantic Canada.

Maritime Studies Research Unit:

Current Research Projects

  • An archaeology of the Petit Nord: the maritime cultural landscape of the French, seasonal, shore-based, salt-cod fishery in northern Newfoundland, 1510-1904(funded by SSHRC)
  • Early modern Breton ceramics in Newfoundland (With Michael Batt, Service archéologique d'Ille et Vilaine, Rennes).
  • An Analytic Catalogue of Documents Relating to the Petit Nord, 1500-1904 (funded by Smallwood Foundation for Newfoundland and Labrador Studies). par
  • The transition from seasonal migratory occupation of fishing rooms to year-around permanent settlement, at Clears Cove, Fermeuse Bay.
  • Organization of a Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology Conference, to be held in St John's, Newfoundland, 16-20 June 2010 (funded by University of Bournemouth and Memorial University, Office of the VP Academic).

Recent Publications

  • Fish into Wine: The Newfoundland Plantation in the Seventeenth Century, Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture. (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2004).
  • Editor, The New Early Modern Newfoundland, the Eighteenth Century. Special issue of Newfoundland Studies, 17 (2) (2003).
  • Editor, The New Early Modern Newfoundland, to 1700. Special issue of Newfoundland Studies, 19 (1) (2001).
  • The Waterfront Archaeology of Early Modern St John's Newfoundland. In Marinella Pasquinucci and Timm Weski, eds., Close Encounters: Sea- and Riverborne Trade, Ports and Hinterlands, Ship Construction and Navigation in Antiquity, the Middle Ages and in Modern Time , Oxford: BAR International Series 1283 (2004), 179-190.
  • Le Petit Nord du XVIIe siècle. Annales du Patrimoine de Fécamp 10 (2003): 13-18.
  • Modernization on Hold: the Traditional Character of the Newfoundland Cod Fishery in the Seventeenth Century. International Journal of Maritime History 15 (2) (2003): 233-264.
  • Early European Occupations in Southeast Newfoundland: Archaeological Perspectives on Competition for Seasonal Fishing Rooms, 1520-1660, in Christian Roy, Jean Bélisle, Marc-André Bernier and Brad Loewen, eds., Mer et Monde. Questions d'archéologie maritime, Collection hors série 1, Archéologiques b0 (Montréal, 2003), 122-133.
  • Comparisons: Atlantic Canada, in Daniel Vickers, ed., A Companion to Colonial America (Malden MA and Oxford: Blackwell, 2003), 489-507.
  • with J. Howse, eds., "Replies to Inquiries, Newfoundland, 1675-1698" in N. Ashcroft and M.G. Barnard, compilers, HMAP [History of Marine Animal Populations] Database

Publications in Press

  • The Scale of the Early Modern Newfoundland Cod Fishery. Studia Atlantica.
  • The English and the Irish in Newfoundland: Historical Archaeology and the Myth of Illegal Settlement. In Audrey Horning and Nick Brannon (eds), Ireland and Britain in the Atlantic World. Society for Post Medieval Archaeology Monograph Series.
  • Transformation of the Maritime Cultural Landscape of Atlantic Canada by Migratory European Fishers, 1500-1800! . In Louis Sicking and Darlene Abreu-Ferreira (eds), The North Atlantic Fisheries in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Period: Interdisciplinary Approaches in History, Archaeology, and Biology (The Hague, Brill).
  • with Stephen F. Mills, Outport Archaeology: Community Archaeology in Newfoundland, in Sherene Baugher and John Jameson, eds., The Past Meets the Present: Archaeologists Partnering with Museum Curators, Teachers, and Community Groups (New York: Springer).

Selected Earlier Publications

  • Discovery and Memory: Zuan Caboto and the Norse in Newfoundland. In Explorations in the North Atlantic from the Middle Ages to the XVIIth Century, ed. Anna Agnarsdottir (Reykjavik: University of Iceland Press, 2002), 45-60! .
  • The Many Landfalls of John Cabot (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 1997).
  • Fish into Wine: the Demand for Alcohol in 17th-Century Newfoundland, Histoire Sociale/Social History 27(54) (1994), 261-278, rep. in The Changing Face of Drink: Substance, Imagery, and Behaviour, eds. Jack S. Blocker and Cheryl Krasnick Warsh (Ottawa: Histoire Sociale/Social History Publications, 1997), 43-64.
  • Early Estimates: Assessment of Catches in the Newfoundland Cod Fishery, 1660-1690. In Marine Resources and Human Societies in the North Atlantic Since 1500, Daniel Vickers (St. John's: ISER Books, 1997), 7-40.
  • with Henry M. Miller, D.L. Hamilton, Nicholas Honerkamp, Steven R. Pendery and James A. Tuck, The Archaeology of Sixteenth- and Seventeenth-Century British Colonization in the Caribbean, United States, and Canada, Society for Historical Archaeology, Guides to Historical Archaeological Literature, no. 4 (1996).
  • The Practice of Portage in the Early Modern N! orth Atlantic: Introduction to an Issue in Maritime Historical Anthropology, Journal of the Canadian Historical Assoc. (new series) 6 (1995), 19-41.
  • Under Water Street: the Early Waterfront of St. John's, Newfoundland, in Archaeological Remains In Situ Preservation (Montreal: International Committee for Archaeological Management, 1995), 243-250.
  • Scavengers and Caretakers: Beothuk/European Settlement Dynamics in 17th-Century Newfoundland, Newfoundland Studies, 9(2) (1993), 279-293.
  • with J.P. Allen, A New Class of South-West English Pottery in North America, Post-Medieval Archaeology 24 (1990), 51-59.