Sunday, October 28, 2012

The Archaeological Conservancy

Why isn't more money flooding into these guys?

Friday, October 26, 2012

More colors

Heading into the weekend and emptying my camera:

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Roadside attractions - Bare Hill Rd, West Bare Hill Rd Harvard

I lied. I actually did squeeze out one or two rock piles I never saw before from an otherwise barren weekend of exploration. First, here is one I had seen before where the road crosses Bower Brook:
Then further north along those roads:
This one seemed a bit disturbed or recent:

 But further into the woods, this one counts as a new rock pile:
Slim pickings, its true.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Massacusetts Archeology Month Calendar

(via James Gage) Not sure if you know about this )

WaylandWalking Together: Detection and Protection of Ancient Ceremonial Landscapes in Modern New England DATE & TIME: Saturday, October 27, 2-4pmLOCATION: Wayland Town Building, 41 Cochituate RoadINFORMATION: Tonya Largy at 508-358-4646, tonya.largy@verizon.netSPONSOR: Wayland Historical Commission, FreePublic acknowledgement and protection of sites across New England includes Wayland. Narragansett Tribal input has provided creative solutions, saving sites while working within the challenges of today’s world. This talk explores preservation challenges and solutions, including wind turbines in the Atlantic.

Social Networking....getting with the program

I am not on Facebook or Twitter and do not really want to be. There are now social networking sites focused on blog publications and, with the possibility of increasing "eye share" for this blog, I am thinking I should do something to get signed up - but they require membership in Facebook or Twitter.

I am too lazy for this social revolution. Anyone want to sign this blog up at Storylane? Or at least help decide if it is worth signing on to?

Monday, October 22, 2012

I got nothin

In spite of two and a half weekends of site hunting. Just pictures of nice fall colors.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Orkney Immersive Panoramas

These links open immersive panormas:
Ken Stuart adds: "Many thanks to Adam Stanford of Aerial-Cam for use of his Land Rover-mounted extensible pole with computer-controlled panning for use in making the aerial shots."

Friday, October 19, 2012

Found something

I have spent a lot of hours this month searching for Indian artifacts, in old and new places. The new places I searched were void, and the places I went where I had luck before had nothing new to give. It is frustrating and disheartening to search for hours and come home with nothing. Sometimes I will search a large area looking for what might be only a small area with artifacts, it is hard to stay focused and easy to get discouraged. Particularly frustrating are the hours spent carefully searching in areas loaded with chips and flakes from toolmaking, picking up hundreds of partially buried pieces of broken stone that all look like they could be arrowheads.

Today I went to a farm field where I have found stuff before. The farmer just harvested, which stirred up the dirt. Unfortunately, it hadn't rained enough since the harvest, there were almost no rocks visible. It takes a lot of rain to wash off the rocks and expose stuff. Fluffed-up, freshly disturbed earth offers terrible conditions for searching, it takes a lot of luck to find something in a setting like that. With no real expectation of finding anything, I walked through the dust to a spot in the field where I found stuff before. And I spotted this:
When I spot an arrowhead on the ground I will usually take some time to enjoy the moment before I pick it up. I will take a lot of pictures of it from different angles and sometimes will even make a short video. In this case I just snapped the one picture and then snatched it out of the earth because I was so desperate to find something and I was so eagerly hoping that this was in fact a stone tool. It certainly looked like one but very often I have taken pictures of stuff that looked even more obviously tool-like than this thing only to find that they are just flakes or sometimes, small exposed parts of much larger chunks of rock buried near the surface. Fortunately this was in fact a good find. I'm not completely sure just what it is, the wide end is worn but I am not sure if it is basal grinding or use wear. I believe this is what is called a "teardrop scraper" (Peter, I think you have one like this?). It has fine pressure flaking on the edges so I think it is a finished tool rather than a preform. When I picked it up it looked gray and I couldn't see just what the material was.
I washed it off and revealed the pretty color. I think this is purple felsite.
Right now it is raining, probably the rain is also falling in the field where I found this and maybe it is washing the dust off of some nice arrowheads. If it rains hard enough it will expose a lot of new stuff. I will probably go there tomorrow and maybe I will find a nice arrowhead. More likely, I will spend a morning searching and find nothing, that is the reality of looking for arrowheads in the places I have found.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Unmet promise - broken arrowheads from western Concord, MA

For the first hour I was finding arrowhead fragments at a rate of one per half hour. But this did not continue and I gave up after another half hour. Each fragment looked like it could be something:
I could not make sense out of this quartz one.
But this is a black felsite triangular Brewerton missing a tip and a corner. The field definitely is worth checking more.

Top of Snow Hill, Westminster/Fitchburg

Another in a continuing occasional series on eastern Massachusetts hilltops.
Also seen on the way up

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Stock Pile Rock Pile? Possible Lighthouse?

Nobody at this point really knows what this tall mysterious structure is - especially me.
But it somehow has a familiar feel, the carefully constructed walls and all, still standing after 500 years of abandonment, washed by tides and hurricanes and messed with by looters...
...this fellow lives there, but had nothing to say about it.
Jan Brown said it might be like a Lowes or Home Depot, a stockpile for construction projects, but then again it could have been like a lighthouse or beacon perhaps, but the truth is that only the people who built it really know - and like that Iguana, they don't have much to say...
I couldn't help but be drawn to what looks like a wall, above that looter's pit:
Here's the detail from the site map, my own two centavos added:

When I returned for a second visit, Jacob and I walked on and around it. This somewhere around the top left hand corner of the structure to the left in the site map - and hopefully the photo captures that rounded feeling. One of the other larger structures, a platform mound that was probably an "elite" residence, had rounded corners that Jan said showed perhaps a later time of construction...
(approx. lower left corner, structure to left in site map)
(Above and below: slightly different camera angles)
There were sort of "points" to the outer edge, sometimes like a small circular stack:
Jacob plucked a loom weight from where the tide washes the edge:
It was "solid walking," no rocking when walking around the structure...
...and Jacob's opinion was that the whole thing was carefully constructed:
And I felt it was too:
 A link to some info by Dr. S. J. Mazzullo, Department of Geology
at Wichita State University:

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Belize "Rock Piles"

     Over on my blog "Waking Up On Turtle Island," I am slowly writing up my experiences at a Maya site I visited in Belize - not on the mainland but on Ambergris Caye (Key) - not the devolped type of site like the temple you might be envisioning but a place that is more like the sites that appear on this blog (and others like it) than you might think.
     And yes I know and remember well that flurry of activity about "Mayan Pyramids in Georgia" and all that, but just take a look at some random photos I took (forgetting to bring a tripod, so they may be a bit blurry and I apologize for that) barely a week ago...

The above "Rock Piles-like Mounds" are about here on the site map above, the south west slope below the more formal and much larger platform mounds, and below I can't resist adding a few shots of the "Beer Bottle Mounds," where I spotted an Obsidian Flake amongst the melange of artifacts... 
Every footsep I took was on some kind of an artifact, anthrosol or pottery:
Sometimes a projectile point:
Sometimes Human Bones: