Thursday, July 23, 2009

Fraser's Olde Towne British Trail Mix Shoppe

A belated update as we come to the end of fieldwork--

We finished at our first site on Wednesday. The last days included a lot of landscape work: mapping with the total station, augering, and just thinking about the areas we'd covered. All of us have learned how the total station operates and used it to survey in points from the excavation and of the topography. The augering (which has become a very popular activity) showed that the slope opposite to the excavation is made of a silty clay, whereas our test pits were in a sandy silt area. The augering has been helpful practice for distinguishing among sediment types.

We can also see, leaving the site, that there are probably a lot more traces of activity throughout the upper plateau at areas other than where we've excavated. We've come across a lot of surface finds, including a nice lithic by the flat, open, scenic place where we screened our sediment (of course). The finds from the site overall are looking like Late Period, which is some help to locating the rock art temporally--although the finds from the shelter on the lower plateau might also contribute to that.

On Tuesday we visited Carrizo Plain and the Painted Rock pictograph site. The site has been open to the public for a long time as evidenced by the names and dates engraved on the rock formation and in many cases over the pictographs; a lot of the images are also eroded from wear. It's a good site for thinking about reasons for protecting rock art sites. Even though it's disappointing to see the pictographs covered over and worn away like that, the range of modern graffiti over the formation attests to the connections that many other people have formed with the site. And of course it's more than just disappointing to a lot of contemporary Native Americans who value that place, but the BLM has to balance those concerns with the use and availability of public land.

Anyway, we also saw a rock with a lot of BRMs.

More recently, we have been working at a quarry site that might help to answer some other questions about the rock art sites--but more on that to come in a later post.


We still haven't found the Lakeview Gusher.

But we did do some haircuts!

You should never breathe dirt, no matter what kind of diseases are in it.
Bonus tip! Don't pile rocks next to your unit.

1 comment:

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