Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Week Five Recap

This past week flew by, but we have continued our progress and finished excavating Units 5 and 6.  We had a brief reprieve from the heat, but got rained out on Friday.  Looks like it is going to be another hot week coming up.

Over the next couple of weeks, we will be wrapping up work for the summer.  Matt Kalos, fellow graduate student, offers a summary of our plan for the rest of the summer.

As we reached the end of Week Five, we are coming down the home stretch with only two weeks  of digging left for the summer.  With limited time remaining, we are aiming to continue our broad overview of the site.  Specifically, we are going to be opening several units in the coming weeks.  As opposed to digging until we reach "sterile" soil, as we discussed in our Week Four Recap, we are going to attempt to understand the formation of the walls that we have exposed.  The units that we open are going to be excavated to the level of the walls, and not any deeper (at this time).  This methodology provides us with the ability to see where the walls "turn;" therefore, gaining insight into the extent of the structures that once occupied the back lots.  

As we have discussed with many of the visitors and volunteers, maps are a great aid to historical archaeology.  By examining a Historic American Building Survey (HABS) map that was drawn in the 1930s, we were able to pinpoint the location of the foundation walls.  However, maps can be misleading.  Often they are biased or only speak to the structures that stood at the time of the survey.  Archaeology provides a tool for "truthing" maps and uncovering more details about building techniques.  Our goals in the coming weeks is to determine what information we can glean about the structures.  In doing so, we will be able to plan for future excavations.

The crew hard at work.

No comments:

Post a Comment