Monday, October 4, 2010

Strawtown Excavation Inspires Awe in Anthropology Club

It is fall, and fall always makes me nostalgic. What can one be nostalgic about at not quite 30, you may ask? Archaeology.

No, really, it makes sense. From the time I could read, (between the ages of two and four, depending on who you ask), I wanted to be an archaeologist. I had a subscription to the National Geographic Society magazine, and I was enthralled by the vibrant pictures and the thrilling tales of scholastic adventure.

I would dig holes in the playground sand, looking for buried treasure-usually only finding sticks and rocks, but that was enough. Unfortunately, there comes a time when the archaeological aspirations of a young child stop seeming ‘cute' to others, and begin to sound ‘impractical.' Like, ‘you should concentrate on something that will make you money' type of impractical.

Thus, when the opportunity to become involved with the Anthropology club, and to become its president, appeared, I jumped at the chance. Even if I had not already been interested, once I heard from club advisor Dr. Josh Wells about the planned trip to the Strawtown Excavation, nothing could have torn me away.

Friday September 24, Dr. Wells and I were joined by several members of the Anthropology club and their families for a caravan down state to the excavation site. Set in a county park, the facilities were a perfect setting for exploration and learning.

The park is a combination of woods and prairie, with excavation sites dotted across it, and an information center where visitors can learn about the Strawtown settlements currently under excavation, and the history of the area and of the people who once lived there.

During the day, we were fortunate to receive a lecture on the site itself, and a demonstration of reproductions of artifacts, such as a hand-powered fire starter, and a hatchet made of a carved wood handle and a rock blade. We also got to examine and participate in the excavation itself.

The team, currently working under the direction of Dr. Robert McCullough of IPFW, was kind enough to let Anthropology club members and their families assist in the sifting of soil removed from the excavation. This process finds small objects that may be otherwise missed during the careful digging. Club members found flakes of rock that result from tool making, ceramics, carved and decorated bone artifacts, and stone blades.

In all, it was a wonderful way to spend a sunny fall day, and the Anthropology club hopes it will continue to be a tradition for many years. Information on the Strawtown excavation can be found at

Source from great site :

Read more interesting topic about archaeology excavations.

No comments: