I am a research archaeologist specialising in Anglo-Saxon England, farming, archaeobotany and digital data. I currently serve as Treasurer of the Association for Environmental Archaeology, and as Editor of Medieval Settlement Research.
My expertise and experience include:
- analysis of charred plant remains
- report writing and editing
- database development
- lecture and seminar presentation
- conference organization
Please feel free to get in touch about consultancy work
Papers and chapters
McKerracher, M. (forthcoming). ‘Cereals’, in A. Wilkin (ed.) Routledge Medieval Encyclopedia Online: Environment, production and exchange.
McKerracher, M. (2021). ‘Archaeology and agriculture: insights from an Essex farmer’, Rural History Today 40, pp.7-8.
McKerracher, M. (2020). ‘Standing on the shoulders of peasants: agency and risk in Anglo-Saxon farming’, in J.A. Quirós Castillo (ed.) Archaeology and History of Peasantries 1. From the Late Prehistory to the Middle Ages. (Documentos de Arqueología Medieval 14), Universidad del País Vasco: pp.113-123.
Hamerow, H., Bogaard, A., Charles, M., Forster, E., Holmes, M., McKerracher, M., Neil, S., Bronk Ramsey, C., Stroud, E. and Thomas, R. (2020). ‘An Integrated Bioarchaeological Approach to the Medieval “Agricultural Revolution”: A Case Study from Stafford, England, c.AD 800-1200’, European Journal of Archaeology 23(4), pp.585-609. doi:10.1017/eaa.2020.6
Hamerow, H., Bogaard, A., Charles, M., Ramsey, C., Thomas, R., Forster, E., Holmes, M., McKerracher, M., Neil, S. and Stroud, E. (2019). ‘Feeding Anglo-Saxon England: The bioarchaeology of an agricultural revolution’, Antiquity 93(368), E12. doi:10.15184/aqy.2019.27
McKerracher, M. (2018). “Introducing FeedSax: Bioarchaeological Explorations of an Early Medieval Agricultural Revolution”, Rural History Today 34: pp.4-5.
McKerracher, M. (2017). “Seeds and status: the archaeobotany of monastic Lyminge”, in Thomas, G. & Knox, A. (eds) Early medieval monasticism in the North Sea Zone (Anglo-Saxon Studies in Archaeology and History 20), University of Oxford School of Archaeology: pp.127-134.
McKerracher, M. (2016). “Bread and surpluses: the Anglo-Saxon ’bread wheat thesis’ reconsidered”, Environmental Archaeology21: pp.88-102.
McKerracher, M. (2016). “Playing with fire? Charred grain as a proxy for cereal surpluses in early medieval England”, Medieval Settlement Research 31: pp.63-66.
McKerracher, M. (2016). “Saving the Bacon? Reflections on the Anglo-Saxon Pig”, Association for Environmental Archaeology Newsletter 134: pp.4-9.
McKerracher, M. (2014). “Landscapes of production in mid Saxon England: the monumental grain ovens”, Medieval Settlement Research29: pp.82-85.
— (2019). Analysis of archaeobotanical remains from excavations in Southampton (SOU 1715). Archive report for Southampton City Council Archaeology Unit.
— (2019). Analysis of charred plant remains from excavations at Alexandra Road, Lymington, Hampshire. Archive report for Southampton City Council Archaeology Unit.
— (2018). Archaeobotanical remains from an inhumation burial at the Rollright Stones. Archive report for the Rollright Trust.
— (2017). Analysis of macroscopic charred plant remains from the 2013-2014 excavations at Church Meadow, Ewell, Surrey. Archive report for the Epsom & Ewell History & Archaeology Society.
— (2015). Assessment of macroscopic plant remains from the 2014 excavations at Lyminge, Kent. Archive report for the University of Reading.
— (2013). Charred Plants Remains from Lyminge: Analysis and interpretation of ten selected samples from the 2008 excavations. Archive report for the University of Reading.
Conferences and seminars
January 2021: Farming in early medieval England: revolution, evolution, or reformations? Buckinghamshire Archaeological Society Winter Lectures.
December 2020: Prospect and Protect: syntironomy and agricultural change in early medieval England. New perspectives on the medieval ‘agricultural revolution’, University of Oxford, virtual conference.
December 2019: Environmental archaeology meets early medieval farming: the Feeding Anglo-Saxon England project. Wessex Centre for History and Archaeology seminar series, University of Winchester (INVITED).
November 2019: Data harvesting: towards the digital automation of charred grain analysis. Association for Environmental Archaeology conference, University of Sheffield (POSTER).
November 2019: Farming by numbers: multi-proxy analyses of Anglo-Saxon agriculture. Pitt-rivers laboratory seminar series, University of Cambridge (INVITED).
July 2019: What the Anglo-Saxons did with and in the English landscape, Sedgeford Historical and Archaeological Research Project summer lecture series (INVITED joint lecture).
October 2018: Standing on the shoulders of peasants. Archaeology of Peasantry conference, University of the Basque Country (INVITED).
March 2018: Feeding Anglo-Saxon England: Collaborating to unravel the mysteries of early medieval farming. CIfA Archives Group conference, Birmingham & Midlands Institute.
July 2017: Planning and keeping a risk-averse harvest in early medieval England. Agrarian production and peasant strategies of risk-avoidance workshop, St Cross College (INVITED).
December 2016: Mid Saxon Farming: towards a holistic view. Peasant Production and Consumption Patterns in Early Medieval Europe workshop, Université Libre de Bruxelles. (INVITED).
November 2016: Storing and processing the Mid Saxon harvest. Medieval Diet Group meeting, University of Oxford.
April 2015: The archaeobotany of a monastery. Early Medieval Monasticism in the North Sea Zone conference, University of Kent.
November 2014: Anglo-Saxon Farming: Broadening the field. Association for Environmental Archaeology conference, University of Plymouth.
February 2013: Mid Saxon Agriculture Reconsidered. Medieval Archaeology Seminar, University of Oxford.
November 2012: Post hoc, ergo propter hoc? Reassessing agriculture in Early-Mid Saxon England. Colloquium Praehistoricum, Goethe-Universität, Frankfurt am Main (INVITED).
November 2012: Through the keyhole: a glimpse of grain ovens in Anglo-Saxon England. Society for Medieval Archaeology Student Colloquium, Cardiff University.
May 2012: Middle Saxon Sheep Farming: Disentangling a woolly hypothesis in southern Britain. Early Medieval Archaeology Student Symposium, University College London (POSTER).
— (2014). Agricultural Development in Mid Saxon England. Unpublished DPhil thesis, University of Oxford.
— (2010). Monastic Landholding and Dependency in Anglo-Saxon England. Unpublished MSt dissertation, University of Oxford.
— (2008). Could Brading village provide evidence of foreign investment in Britain in Late Antiquity? Unpublished BA dissertation, University of Oxford.