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Hello all- This weekend is the final open house for the 2013 field season. We will have lots going on at the site, even though the rain has kept our excavation units flooded by the high water table. We are trying to finish the excavation of four trenches, all of which visitors can see when […]
If you’ve never been to the site before, or you are a new reader of the blog, you may not know that we’ve posted some videos to YouTube over the past few years. I’m reposting this video that Mark Dice completed in 2010!
Mark made this video before we had started any excavations at the site, but it still serves as a great introduction for those planning a visit. It answers questions like, “where is the nearest toilet?” and “what might I see?”
The weather will be spotty- but it looks good for the morning with thunderstorms developing in the afternoon. We will watch the NEXRAD radar to keep an eye on things. Thunderstorms create unsafe conditions, as do high winds, so we will be out working and hosting guests today, unless strong storms drive us away!
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The past two days have been pretty rainy. The research team has excavated down to the water table, so the deepest trenches start to fill up with water when we’ve had rain, so we couldn’t get much done in the field. As a result, we’ve spent two days working in the lab, having lectures and […]
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It looks like we may get rained out again today. Even worse, the weekend looks pretty bad too. I’ll post early each morning about whether or not we’ve been rained out each day. The research team will spend another day in the lab today, I think. That may allow me to get some blog posts […]
WE hope that everyone will come to visit us this summer in June! The first weekend allowed us to work out the tour’s basics and the visitors helped us to think about how we could improve the experience. Cliff is an important site with a fascinating history, and we hope to share it with as […]
Week three saw us getting started in Clifton. I just finished explaining why we returned to do more excavation in the part of Clifton we call the “interyard.” Lee Presley wanted to expand her understanding of what we thought was a slaughtering and butchering activity area. We also wanted to expand our understanding of the use of yard space around the boarding houses, so we decided to put trenches into two main areas.
First, we returned to the 2012 trench excavation. We placed two new five meter long trenches that stretched perpendicular to last year’s trench. One trench would run at 50N between 19E and 24E, the other would run at 52N for the same distance to the east. This is the drawing I put together for us to use in the field:
We planned to start by excavating these trenches down until we hit the surfaces of the building- the wood floor surface that may be the barn and then the more ephemeral joists and boards set in the clean, fine sand. If we have time, we planned to put a third trench in, running from the end of the 2012 trench. That last trench would allow us to recover more butchered animal bones and look at potential post holes and other items from the northern most part of the 2012 trench. We wondered about that one, since it was below the ground water table last year and filled with water too quickly to allow for good archaeological excavation.
In order to get another comparative view of yard space around this group of boarding houses, we decided to put a trench near a building on the other side of the street, directly to the south. That trench would allow us to cross cut between the wall of one building, through the yard, and perhaps even showing the road construction. Since that trench sits underneath a GIGANTIC apple tree, it quickly became known as Trench A.
I will return to the map I posted earlier today to show these two spots on the town plan.
Enough for today- I have to finish getting ready to head back into the field tomorrow!
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During the 2012 field season, while other research teams were digging in the 1850-1869 Stamp Mill Complex, working on STP surveys around Clifton, and mapping (as always!), one group laid out a 1 meter wide trench that connected the two curious test pits in the Clifton “Interyard.” The two test pits, 50N 25E and 55N […]
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During 2012, we placed a set of test pits on a grid to sample around one of the buildings in Clifton that we thought was a likely boarding house. This was one of a group of buildings that were larger framed structures with clapboard siding, a nice contrast from the small log cabins. There was […]
Many regular readers of this blog know what we did last year, but I need to explain our plan for the field season for the benefit of new followers. We’ve been doing fieldwork at Cliff and Clifton for four years now. The entire project grew out of Sean Gohman’s interest in the Cliff Mine’s story. We spent […]