Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Field School Lecture Series

Here is the announcement for our 2013 Speaker Series:

"Planes, Mills, Factories, and Forts: Exploring Technological Heritage in the 21st Century"

WHEN: June 27, July 11, July 18, July 25,August 1. All lectures take place at 7:00 PM.

WHERE: All talks will be held at the Tex Rankin Theater at Pearson Air Museum, located at 1115 E 5th Street, Vancouver, WA 98661

VANCOUVER, WA – Fort Vancouver National Historic Site’s 2013 Speaker Series, part of the annual Public Archaeology Field School, will bring together experts in the field of archaeology to address topics of technological heritage. Lectures in the series will discuss the preservation of aviation crash sites in National Parks, the Kaiser Shipyards, the Brimstone Hill Fortress on St. Kitts in the Caribbean, the underwater archaeology of the World War II Midway battlefield, and more.

Technological heritage is found at industrial and military sites, and forms an important part of many communities’ local identity and history. The preservation of technological heritage occurs in many forms, including museum objects and archives, antique and replica aircraft, ships and equipment, industrial structures, and archaeological sites. Together, these tell the story of industrial experiments and undertakings and the people and communities associated with them.

The lectures are open to the public and free of charge.

FOR MORE INFORMATION, including a full schedule, visit

Monday, May 13, 2013

Data Entry in the Lab

Volunteer Patty Tuller data enters lab analysis data from paper forms in the clean area of the Fur Store Archaeology Laboratory. While lap top computers have streamlined this step in some of our lab situations, the use of volunteers and the sometimes dusty conditions in the "dirty lab" makes direct digital recording using laptops difficult. After the field school, we hope to continue to use the weatherized IPads for routine collections labeling processes and direct analysis recording.

Field School Preparations

Just finished preparing a presentation for tomorrow's Western States SHPO (State Historic Preservation Conference) meeting, which is being held at the City of Vancouver's Artillery Barracks, part of the Vancouver National Historic Reserve (the affiliated area adjacent to the National Park Service's Fort Vancouver National Historic Site).  The lunchtime talk is will focus on our Public Archaeology field school and introduce the SHPOs and their staffs to our experiment with mobile recording technology.

A few weeks ago I tweaked our Level Record Form and marveled at its potential to reduce mathematical errors associated with elevations, make routine the use of standardized categories, and streamline data collection in the field.  I had hoped to use this with a little project associated with a single 1x1-m test unit, but the timing didn't quite work out.  A screen-shot of the first page of our form is shown -- I'll post the entire form once I have troubleshot it a bit more.

We had a large number of field school applications this year and it looks like it will be a big group.  Am still working out the public lecture series (although almost have it nailed down) and working through the many processes that we run through every year to coordinate between three big organizations -- two Universities and the National Park Service.  So many details . . .

Screen shot of the first page of the Level Record Form.