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Friday, June 07, 2013

On to Another Structure

Chase attempts to photograph a visitor to the site

Today we finished the structure that had all the hearths in the middle of it.  I suspect it was where the inhabitants at the site dried and smoked meat.  We’ve moved on to another structure that looks more like a house.  We already started to uncover the floor and it clearly does not have a complex of hearths in the middle.  The floor seems to be very thin.  We have also found a bench and it has clearly defined siderooms and much better built walls.  Much more like the late prehistoric houses I am used to excavating!

We are also digging into the midden in front of the house where the inhabitants threw their garbage.  We have found the remains of past meals – clamshells, cod, salmon, and rockfish bones, bird and seal bones – and even some cool organic artifacts and pottery.  The artifact of the day was a toggling harpoon unlike any other I have ever seen.  It is self pointed and has four small barbs above the line hole – weird.  We also found a blue glass bead.  The bead is also strange and I am wondering if it predates Russian contact.  We have not found anything else that suggests the site is historic and the bead does not look like a typical Russian trade bead.

Bad weather continues to plague us – yesterday it was blowing 40 and raining.  We went out to the site during a ‘sucker hole’ and went straight home when it really started to rain and blow in earnest.  Tonight, however, it is clear and sunny.  We’re hoping the weather pattern holds so that we can learn more about the new structure.  I’m sure there will be some surprises.  Patrick

Nasty day - we decided to quit early

Back at work finishing up the structure with the hearth complex in the middle

On to the midden

Sam and another small pendant

Sam's really weird toggling harpoon

Blue glass bead from the midden

We are finding lots of pottery in front of the new house - only one piece at the other structure

1 comment:

Molly Odell said...

That is some big old pottery!

So where might blue glass beads have come from pre-Russian era? From Asia via the Bering Strait? Or up the coast from Spanish CA?