After the Field: Laboratory Analysis

Monday, July 6, 2015

At the Center for Historic and Military Archaeology, Heidelberg University Although working in the field is a major component of archaeology, lab work comprises the majority of an archaeologist’s time. The lab is where everything comes together, be it analysis, background research, or actual artifact refitting. There are a multitude of tasks done in the […]

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Feature Discovery and Identification, Recording, and Excavation

Thursday, July 2, 2015 Recording Cultural Material in the Latrine

One of the many things that take place during our field school is the excavation, discovery, identification and recording of features. Features are identified during the course of excavation at Johnson’s Island Civil War Prison. A feature is an identifiable variation or change in the soil involving color, composition or texture. These can be identified […]

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The Glass of Johnson’s Island

Wednesday, June 24, 2015 green glass inkwell base

While digging in the majority of our units, the most obvious artifacts are typically pieces of glass, both large and small. The sheen of the glass in the sunlight illuminates it and separates it from the rest of the soil. Whether the color of the glass is dark green, amber, light green, or clear when […]

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How to Open and Set Up New Units for Excavation

Thursday, June 18, 2015 The key is to keep the string in line with the stakes

Director’s Note: Every unit we open up is tied to the overall site grid that was established back in 1989. There are several brass plate permanent datum points cemented into the ground. From these we place stakes along the grid in the areas we wish to investigate. As noted, we are set up to explore […]

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FS-ing Artifacts at Johnson’s Island

Tuesday, June 9, 2015 N218E134 (excavation unit)

As we excavate, part of our job is to screen buckets of soil for artifacts. Normally, the artifacts we find are set off to the side in trays to be counted and bagged at the end of the day. However, if something is unique or especially nice, it is FS’d. FS stands for “Field Specimen”, […]

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