A very good day!

Written by Michele Greenan, Natural History Collections Manager

It was a great day to dig! We started a bit later because the storms were brewing in the area. Our site is in the middle of a very large field and any hint of lightning will send us flying outta the site – so we tend to be very cautious. But the rain moved by and the day went along very well – with nice cloudy cover and a pretty darn good breeze. It was a nice little break from those scorchers we had been dealing with.

Digging the riverbank is cumbersome, but this year I’ve got some serious help! In the top picture, we have crew digging a platform from which to work. Sometimes you have to dig standing like Charlie Chaplin – minus the cane, add the pick, but in this instance, they were able to build a nice platform. To his left is a nice big feature that had lots of artifacts in it. As excavation takes place at the feature, crew grabs the full buckets and water screens down by the river (bottom picture).

Back at the trench, the crew continued to reveal a structure and features, which are now starting to really take shape (I will have a picture this for the next post).

We ended the day a bit early. The storms started to kick up again and we played it safe and left. That’s it until next time!

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The Crew Arrives!

Written by Michele Greenan, Natural History Collections Manager

The Yankeetown field crew arrived … shovels in hand, sunscreen a-plenty and ready for hard work. But I figured they would be, since they came highly recommended by the Taswell Community Center.

OK, they aren’t from Taswell, but I think that might be OK. The crew that joined the Indiana State Museum and Historic Sites field season is from Indiana University Professor Susan Alt. They had been working at another Yankeetown Site and thankfully had agreed to join the museum for two weeks. In 2008, we found evidence of a possible house that had been burned. One of our goals for this year was to try and find more evidence of structures and associated features. Our other goal was to attack the riverbank and get good profiles while excavating riverbank features that were eroding out of the bank.

The IU field crew attacked goal #1. As you may have read from last week, Gaby and I placed a location marker on the site based on another marker that we use as our permanent datum (like a permanent pivot point from which all measurements are referred). The IU field crew immediately began cleaning out the trench that the back-hoe had left.

By the end of the day, interesting things were starting to appear in the floor of the trench. House floor? Pit features? Both? We shall soon see! At the riverbank, a crew from IU and I had located some excellent features and had begun the tedious task of excavating those features. At the end of the day, we were mid-dig on a great pit feature that was yielding good amounts of ceramics. The feature was expanding into the bank, so we didn’t get to finish — but it gives us something to look forward to first thing in the morning!

Until next time!

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