A most excellent find!

Written by Michele Greenan, Natural History Collections Manager

These students are working on a burned post.

A very interesting day to say the least! The trench has really started to show its true colors with features galore! A feature – generally speaking in archaeological terms – is the non-portable cultural evidence. It’s something that, if you take it, you destroy it (so you can’t really take it ‘as is’). Like, for example, evidence that a structure once stood at a particular spot but was later burned down. We see changes in soil and lots and lots of burned soil that form a nice square (in this case) pattern. We found evidence of a structure in 2008, and we have another one now! There are plenty of other things going on, too. There is a line of burned posts in place. We can kinda assume an association between the structures (or, structures in general) and the posts, but not really. We just don’t yet know.

This picture says it all … The sheer joy of doing archaeology and knowing you’re the first one to touch something after it was last held some 800 to 900 years ago. Here, a field school student shows us her find … a chunky stone. In the picture, you can barely see that the stone has been shaped to a perfect round, disk shape. The center of both sides is concave. These stones were used in playing a particular game of the same name. The collections of the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites has some beautiful examples of chunky stones, but most lack good provenience. This is a most excellent artifact!

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