The DNA of a battle that helped turn the tide of a war going horribly wrong for America lay buried just 6 inches below a Maryland cornfield.
For nearly two centuries, musket balls, canister shot and other artifacts from intense fighting at Caulk's Field waited to tell the story of a sweltering August night in 1814, when militiamen sprang a trap on a British raiding party bent on destruction.
How did the citizen-soldiers best their battle-tested foes?
State archaeologist Julie Schablitsky hopes to figure that out. With the help of cadaver-sniffing dogs and history buffs armed with metal detectors, she is retracing the footsteps of Sir Peter Parker, a British marine captain who led 170 troops, and a like number of militiamen commanded by Col. Philip Reed.