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John P. Hamilton

John Hamilton head shot
Senior Research Associate


John is a conservator specializing in metals, concretion excavation, and artifact casting. With over 22 years of experience dealing with the storage, documentation, and conservation of terrestrial and marine archaeological artifacts, he is an invaluable asset when it comes to the successful conservation of any project that comes through the CRL. Additionally, John’s technical training of undergraduate and graduate students is an essential part of the education all student workers receive at the CRL.

John received his Bachelor of Science degree in Wildlife and Fisheries from Texas A&M University in 1998. Since joining the CRL, he has worked on maritime projects including the La Belle project, the Red River project, Denbigh, CSS Alabama, the Mardi Gras Shipwreck, USS Westfield, and the CSS Georgia. Terrestrial projects include the San Jacinto Battle Site, artifacts from the Red River War, Palo Alto, the Palo Duro Canyon, and the Fulton Mansion furnace. John has also worked on several artifacts from forts including the conservation of 8 cannon from The Alamo. He has also worked at Fort El Morro and Fort San Christobal in San Juan, Puerto Rico. He is currently working on 25 cast-iron cannon from Castillo de San Marcos National Monument in St. Augustine, FL.

John has worked directly on or supported 185 archaeological conservation projects. He has conserved thousands of metal artifacts including iron, bronze, brass, copper, lead, pewter, and silver, ranging in size from delicate brass pins to 6-ton anchors. He has completed the conservation 39 cannons to date and is currently in progress on another 29 (68 total). And on top of all this, he is a swell guy.