Archaeological work in Huu-ay-aht territory, 2012
Quick note to say that the upcoming February meeting of the Victoria Chapter of the Archaeological Society of B.C. should be a good one (sadly I am back east at the time):
Coastal Field Archaeology in Huu-ay-aht Territory: Highlights from the 2012 Bamfield Marine Science Centre Archaeological Field School
Tuesday February 19th, 2013, 7:30 pm Pacific Forestry Centre,
506 West Burnside Road. map
Free and Open to the Public
Abstract: In July and August of 2012, the Huu-ay-aht First Nation and the Bamfield Marine Science Centre co-hosted a ‘Coastal Field Archaeology’ course on Huu-ay-aht Government Lands in Barkley Sound on western Vancouver Island. Continue reading
Posted in Archaeology, fieldwork, First Nations, Northwest Coast, Shell Middens, Vancouver Island
Tagged Archaeological Society of BC, Archaeology, ASBC, fieldschools, Huu-ay-aht, Vancouver Island
Unusual serrated stone tool from Gitwangak area site, perhaps used for cedar processing. Source: CBC
There’s a nice audio interview and slide show from the CBC with Jenny Lewis of Kleanza Consulting archaeologists about a dig going on along the Skeena River near Gitwangak (Kitwanga) in Gitxan Territory. The project is apparently a CN Rail siding repair and there have been many, many stone tools found, including some in stratified setting with carbon dates associated.
Remarkably, Lewis asserts that they have material dating to around 9,000 years ago, in addition to the more recent finds. This would certainly make it amongst the oldest, if not the oldest, archaeological material known from the Skeena River area, although it is not specified how the earliest date estimates were arrived at. The well-known sites in the Kitselas Canyon, for example, are generally all within the last 5,000 years if memory serves me right. Continue reading
Posted in Archaeology, Cultural Resource Management, Northwest Interior
Tagged Archaeology, CBC, CN Rail, CRM, Cultural Resource Management, Gitwangak, Gitxsan, Kitwanga, Kleanza, Skeena River
View of reconstructed Cathlapotle Chinookan Plankhouse relatively close to Portland. Click for source.
The 2013 Northwest Anthropology conference is coming up soon at the end of March, but it’s not too late to submit a symposium proposal (deadline January 28th) or contribute a paper (deadline February 8th).
NWAC is always an excellent conference which draws on Anthropology broadly but with a hefty dose of archaeology, sometimes mostly archaeology. I’ve noticed in the past it also draws a lot of participation from Tribal and First Nations groups, from consulting and government archaeologists, interested laypeople, as well as academics of all levels from undergrads to retirees. In that sense it is far more multi-vocal than the “really big conferences” tend to be. It also has a tradition of very reasonable fees and hotel rates and this year is no exception. Add on Portland’s status as microbrewery capital of (probably) the entire world and what’s not to like?
The conference is hosted by the excellent Department of Anthropology at Portland State University, with lead organization apparently by occasional blog commenter (and Professor Emeritus) Ken Ames.
The Canadian Archaeological Association conference is also coming up locally in May (at Whistler), so more on that in due course, but just for now, the call for sessions is open until January 31st.
Posted in anthropology, Archaeology, Cultural Resource Management, Northwest Interior, Northwest Coast, Oregon
Tagged anthropology, Archaeology, CAA, Canadian Archaeological Association, CRM, Northwest Anthropological Conference, NWAC, pdx, Portland State University
Archaeological Science on Haida Gwaii.
So I’ve never posted job ads here before and I may never do so again, but there are two ones posted right now with a lot of potential for readers of this blog: one is an archaeological position with the Council of the Haida Nation (PDF), the other a tenure track position in archaeological sciences at Washington State University.
Posted in Archaeology, Cultural Resource Management, First Nations, Haida Gwaii, Northwest Interior, Northwest Coast, Teaching, Uncategorized, Washington State
Tagged Archaeology, CHN, Council of the Haida Nation, CRM, Cultural Resource Management, Haida Gwaii, jobs, Washington State University, WSU
Screenshot of BC Archaeology Forum Website.
It came up in comments a week or so ago on this blog, but the annual wondering where the archaeology forum is over — it’ll be in Cranbrook October 26-28, with the main day of presentations and a dinner/drumming/dancing on Saturday the 27th. Indeed, the evening festivities are scheduled to go until 1.00 a.m., so it should be a good party. The Sunday field trip will be to a quarry site. The Ktunaxa First Nation will be hosting, for which they deserve all our thanks.
Stone Bowls in bedrock at Willows Beach, Victoria. Photo courtesy of Beth Weathers.
Investigation into Intertidal Bedrock Bowls at Willows Beach, Victoria.
Tuesday Sept 18, 2012, 7:30 pm Pacific Forestry Centre,
506 West Burnside Road. map
Free and Open to the Public
Overview (via ASBC): In 2009, Beth Weathers was informed by a local resident that there were some “Indian Bowls” in a bedrock outcrop at Willows Beach in the Oak Bay area of Victoria. Upon investigation, Beth identified and recorded 27 bowls that have been ground into one granite outcrop near the mouth of Bowker Creek. These bowls, and others like them, will eventually became the topic of her MA thesis. Beth will present information and results to date from her studies into these fascinating ancient features.
Bio: Beth Weathers has worked as a professional archaeologist for over a decade, first in Cultural Resource Management consulting, then at the British Columbia Archaeology Branch, where she is still employed. She was also instructor and TA for two semesters at UVic during her spare time.
Note: At the completion of Beth’s presentation a brief period will be devoted to the Annual General Meeting business.
For information, e-mail email@example.com
PS: While we’re talking public talks, where is the Archaeology Forum going to be this year?
Sisiutl for Sale
I was browsing to price out some used skiffs, and look what I found – a custom built archaeological research vessel — only $99,000. (I wonder what she cost to build?) The listing is here, with a PDF backup for posterity here.
I don’t have any memories of the Sisiutl — never stepped on board — but I know she is close to the hearts of many SFU faculty and former students.
Posted in Archaeology, fieldwork, history, Northwest Coast, Teaching
Tagged Archaeology, boats, fieldwork, research, SFU, Simon Fraser University, Sisiutl
Screenshot from the online document about Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, showing his iron-bladed "man's tool", and a small copper bead found with the body. Source: Royal BC Museum.
Many readers of this ever-more occasional blog will be aware of the exciting and profound discovery in 1999 of the well-preserved remains of a young man frozen in a glacier in Northwestern British Columbia. Found within the traditional territory of the Champagne-Aishihik First Nation, the man was given the name Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, or “Long Ago Person Found.” In the spirit of discovering what messages from the past that Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi might bearing, a remarkable collaborative research project was commenced. Results of this study have been presented at numerous conferences and in the scientific literature, but a landmark event hopefully just around the corner is the publication of a book recounting all the cultural and scientific knowledge borne into the present by this unfortunate young man.
While we wait for the book, it is very exciting to see that the Royal BC Museum has made a non-technical, well-illustrated overview document online which tells the main threads of the story of Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi.
Posted in anthropology, Archaeology, Cultural Resource Management, First Nations, Northwest Interior
Tagged Archaeology, RBCM, Royal BC Museum, anthropology, ice patches, glaciers, Kwäday Dän Ts’ìnchi, KDT, Champagne-Aishihik First Nation, Tatsenshini-Alsek
ASBC Nanaimo Members in the Field, 2011: Photo: Colleen Parsley, Source: ASBC Nanaimo.
I posted this as a comment a few days ago, but decided it was worth a post on its own: there is a worrisome news snippet in the Nanaimo paper concerning the Archaeological Society of BC, Nanaimo Chapter. (At least, I infer this is the society in question!).
The full text indicates there will be a public meeting on Monday November 7th at Vancouver Island University which suggests the Nanaimo organization is in tough times:
7 p.m. The Archaeological Society is on the brink of collapse. If you feel the archaeology of Nanaimo and area has significant value, please come share your ideas at Bldg 356 Room 109 on the VIU campus. Continue reading
Duwamish composite stone anchor. Source: UW.
I was talking the other day about how under-represented organic technology is in archaeology generally, and especially on the Northwest Coast, where the old adage is that 95% of the technology was made out of plants (trees, wood, bark, roots, grasses, seaweeds). A classic example of this phenomenon are anchor stones and sinker stones. While some of these stones had grooves or perforated holes (and are thereby very visible and durable in the archaeological record), many may have been made by the more simple, subtle and expedient method of simply wrapping line or basketry around an unmodified rock. When the organic component rots away, as it will most of the time, then the archaeologist has, well, an unmodified rock.
Anyway, it was a lucky stroke for my current interest that I came across the above photo from the University of Washington Digital Archives.
Posted in Archaeology, Northwest Coast, Technology, Washington State
Tagged Archaeology, Duwamish, Hoko River, organic technology, reef netting, Technology, underwater archaeology, waterlogged sites, wet sites