The work which was the impetus for creating this website was composed of the studies I, Rikke D. Giles, undertook for my PhD dissertation in Anthropology from the University of Pennsylvania (2008). That work was published as Roman Soldiers and the Roman Army (BAR British Series 562) in 2012, and then amended, with more data sources added, to result in this website.
I am something of a Jack (or Jill as it were) of all trades due to life circumstances. Up until recently I ran a small organic farm. I've mostly retired from farming, but I still live on the farmsite in the countryside. I have done, from the time I undertook my undergraduate studies and emerged with a B.S. in General Engineering, a lot of work with computers. I still do such work, writing code in everything from C to PhP and producing websites for various purposes.
My lifelong fascination with and interest in the Roman Empire and its Army is central to this website, and has been central to my life despite my concentration on farming and computers in the past. The studies which form this website combine that fascination with computers, and I'm very pleased to present the results to the public now.
I owe an enormous debt of gratitude to many people for their help and encouragement. Everyone that talked to me, looked at my work, gave me encouragement, told me about their work, offered criticism, everyone, has made this possible. My mentor at Penn, Dr. Bernard Wailes, will always be close in my thoughts and my heart. He sadly passed away before my work was published. Dr. David Breeze, whether he realizes it or not, helped push me to do more work, and visualize more ways of using the data I'd collected, when he asked me to write a small chapter for his book on Bearsden Roman Fort. I'm incredibly grateful for that opportunity and encouragement.
And in my personal life, if it wasn't for the help, support and encouragement of my husband, Randy Wagner, I would never have gotten this far (or indeed graduated with my PhD). Without his willingness to take over the working and running of the farm when I was ensconced in a computer chair before a computer recording data, or writing, or traveling to Britain to collect more information and data, I would never have been able to succeed. Finally, my parents also made this possible in every way.