Results from June 9, 2007

Today was the first of our "Volunteer Saturdays" - opportunities for interested folks to try their hand at real archaeology.

Along with about half of our student crew, we had several volunteers -- our thanks to Jennifer Clinton, Brandy Dacus, Lacey Fleming, Ann Funkhouser, Laura Joseph, Dimesa Lee, Nathan Lesnak, Chris Robbins, Shannon Smith, and Angela Stroupe! Below, crew member Gwen Boen works with volunteers Ann Funkhouser and Angela Stroupe at one of the screens.

We were also visited by two of our Research Faculty -- Drs. Shannon Hodge and Tanya Peres. Below, Dr. Hodge and young son John view the excavations along with Jesse and Dr. Peres.

Although we have few exciting artifacts to report -- we are finding some rather spectacular and promising evidence of past activites from the 13th century A.D.

New units revealed six wall trenches on the north wall of the structure we started investigating in 2006.

The image below highlights the six trenches -- this amplifies our information from last year. We knew that this building had been built and then rebuilt at least four times -- now we know that it was rebuilt at least five times. Using some educated guesses -- this means that this particular building existed on the site for probably at least 90 years and perhaps as many as 200 years.

We've now had to update our "plan" from last year to reflect this rebuilding of the north wall of this structure.

Our large pit feature expanded into an enormous rectangularish feature -- promising to be filled with artifacts that will help us to understand its function and meaning.

And, as always, our student crew continued to practice the skills and techniques of the archaeologist. Below, Holly makes a successful run up the growing backdirt pile.

Although our first week has been slow in terms of spectacular discoveries -- next week promises to bring some new insights as we begin to investigate the features exposed this week. Slowly but surely, our version of scientific archaeology teases new information and insights from the earth.

More on Monday!