National Archaeology Day is a celebration of archaeology and the
thrill of discovery. Every October the AIA and archaeological
organizations across the United States, Canada, and abroad present
archaeological programs and activities for people of all ages and
interests. You can find archaeology programs and activities taking place near you here. Or follow what's happening through the National Archaeology Day blog!
Our Digital Life: A University of California TV (UCTV) YouTube series
Our Digital Life, a new series from the YouTube original channel UCTV Prime, reveals how UC Merced researchers are using cutting-edge digital tools to help us visualize, research and learn about things we could previously only imagine. The programs incorporate vivid animations, simulations, and interviews with researchers in archeology, engineering, psychology and more to demonstrate how this technology is transforming the way we view our past, present and future - as well as ourselves.
Episode 1: The Past - Digital Archeology and History.
It's easy to imagine how digital technology will influence our future, but what about our past? Discover how "cyber-archeologists" and historians at UC Merced are using cutting-edge digital tools to bring the past back to life in vivid, 3-D detail.
Episode 2: The Present -Cognitive and Computer Science, Our Digital Self
The second episode moves from the digital past to the present, where cognitive scientists and computer engineers at UC Merced are collaborating and using real time, 3-D motion capture technology to understand our complex behavior and how we use it to record and analyze the way we live. The researchers aim to build a digital library of human motion that will help construct lifelike human avatars for use in telemedicine, education and ways we've yet to imagine.
Episode 3: The Future - Teaching and Life-Saving Tools
The third and final episode shows how UC Merced scientists are developing digital technology to help visualize, research and learn about objects on the nanoscale. Using 3-D imaging usually reserved for Hollywood films, students and researchers are breaking new ground in the study of nanomaterials and how we use technology in the classroom and the lab to teach and train the researchers of the future
Mount Vernon's Mystery Midden
Mount Vernon Ladies Association’s archeologists have announced that the website for the Archaeological Collections Online Project – South Grove Midden is live. The two year project to analyze and digitize more than 120,000 artifacts excavated between 1990 and 1994 is directed by Eleanor Breen. It dates from the mid-eighteenth to the twentieth century, with the bulk of the assemblage deposited prior to the Revolutionary War.
To visit the website, go to http://mountvernonmidden.org. Progress of analysis of the Midden site can be followed on the weekly blog, linked to the Midden website and accessible by “liking” Mount Vernon’s Mystery Midden Facebook page.
The project’s Facebook page is “Mount Vernon’s Mystery Midden”
Independence NHP Archeology Lab Designated Preserve America Steward
Michelle Obama has designated the Living History Center Archeology Laboratory at Independence NHP a Preserve America Steward, honoring their volunteer programs. Preserve America Stewards is a designation program that recognizes programs that have demonstrated a successful use of volunteer time and commitment in order to help care for our historic heritage.
The Archeology Laboratory at Independence NHP developed through a partnership between the NPS and the National Constitution Center (NCC), following one of the largest archeological projects in the history of the Service. Between 2000 and 2003 NPS archeologists directed excavations on Independence Mall. They recovered hundreds of archeological features and more than 1 million artifacts, dating from several millennia B.C. to the mid-nineteenth century. The intense local interest in the project fueled volunteer efforts. As analysis progresses, the emerging stories highlight yet untold aspects of local and national history, including those related to the formative years of the free African American community in Philadelphia.
The volunteer program was launched under the direction of the three professional NPS archeologists in 2007. Calculated at the current rate for NPS volunteer contributions, the LAB volunteer program is estimated to have saved the NPS more than $400,000, with total project savings expected to exceed $1 million by the time that the project is completed.
For more information about Independence NP and the LAB, go to www.nps.gov/inde/
New Castle County Historic Preservation Award for Public Education Programs for Boyd's Corner and Choptank Road
Archaeology Projects (Delaware)
The New Castle County, Delaware Historic Review Board annually selects projects for Historic Preservation awards. The Historic Preservation awards are given out to local, state, or private projects the exemplify the principles of Historic Preservation: To preserve, conserve and protect buildings, objects, landscapes or other artifacts of historic significance. The July 2010 award recognizes the public education programs developed by the Delaware Department of Transportation and their partners during a road - widening project. The brochure Archaeology Along Choptank Road is one of the products produced.
Philadelphia public archaeology lab at Independence National Historical Park closed for up to two years
The popular public archaeology lab at Independence National Historical Park, forced from its longtime home at Third and Chestnut Streets by a land deal undertaken by the park and a private group, will not reopen in its new quarters for up to two years, park officials said this week.
The Philadelphia Archaeological Forum, a professional association dedicated to preserving and advancing awareness of archaeological resources, expressed dismay about the delays. "We believe the extended closure of the laboratory represents a serious setback" to its work, the forum said in a July 20 letter to park superintendent Cynthia MacLeod. The letter, signed by forum vice president Lauren J. Cook, called the lengthy delay "unacceptable."
The move was forced by an agreement between the park and the private American Revolution Center, which had sought unsuccessfully to open a facility in Valley Forge National Historical Park.
Independence Park is transferring a parcel at the southeast corner of Third and Chestnut - home of the lab - to the Revolution Center; in return, the center is transferring 78 acres in Valley Forge to the National Park Service. Park service archaeologist Jed Levin, who is in charge of the lab, said a smaller-scale Walnut Street lab would be open in about three weeks. MacLeod said that small numbers of visitors could be accommodated by appointment and that public programming - talks or lectures - might be established at the First Bank at a later date.
The archaeological forum's disappointment in the delay is significant because the group has a formal involvement in the lab's mission: completion of research and analysis related to the massive excavation that preceded the 2000 construction of the National Constitution Center on Independence Mall's northernmost block, between Race and Arch and Fifth and Sixth Streets.
The constitution center was required by federal law to perform the archaeological work, and it signed a contract, known as a programmatic agreement, spelling out what it would do and when.
More than a million artifacts ultimately were unearthed in that dig - from children's toys to still-legible newspapers - leading many to hail the work as one of the most important U.S. urban digs ever undertaken. The archaeology lab was written into the programmatic agreement as a vehicle for public education; over the years, roughly 30,000 visitors annually have watched archaeologists and volunteers slowly piece together the physical debris laid down in the streets and yards of a remarkably diverse block.
The archaeological forum is a formal consulting party to the programmatic agreement, which means it may review and comment on matters affecting completion of the project, and it sees the public lab as an important element of that work.
This web page created by the National Science Foundation (NSF) compares 'Reel' or movie archaeology with 'real' archaeology conducted by NSF researchers. NSF is an independent federal agency that promotes the progress of science and advances the national health, prosperity, and welfare, etc. To learn more about NSF, view this video.
Preserve America Grant Award The Indiana State Historic Preservation Office (the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology [DHPA]) has been awarded a Preserve America grant for $180,454 to create an inventory of Indiana’s prehistoric mounds and earthworks. The project will be conducted in partnership with archaeologists at several of the state’s universities and of other affiliations. In addition to creating the inventory, this exciting project will develop a narrative report of findings and recommendations, and establish a webpage to educate the public.
Past • Horizons
A magazine for Volunteer Archaeology and Heritage Conservation
This new, on-line magazine offers articles plus recent news, a selection of volunteer projects, profiles of people in the field, crossword puzzles and cartoons -- even a 'Dig Cook's recipes used during fieldwork! The magazine employs the Digipage interface program which makes reading this online both easy and enjoyable! This magazine is the latest feature offered by Past Horizons, an internet 'Gateway to Archaeological Opportunities' and an 'Archaeology Tool Store' created by a to enable people, whether amateur or professional, to participate in archaeological projects around the world.
Kentucky Living Archaeology Weekend Wins 2008 SEAC Public Outreach Grant
The 2008 Southeastern Archaeological Conference (SEAC) Public Outreach Grant was awarded to the Kentucky Organization of Professional Archaeologists (KyOPA) for their annual event Living Archaeology Weekend, Red River Gorge Geological Area, Kentucky. This two-day public outreach event offers school children and the general public a variety of educational activities in American Indian lifeways, archaeological interpretation, and site preservation. The event, which began in 1989, now serves 2,000-3,000 participants annually, with programs delivered by 15-18 demonstrators. Living Archaeology Weekend will be held September 20-21, 2008. The SEAC grant will help pay for developing pre-event and post-event materials for schools, as well as evaluation materials. For more information on Living Archaeology Weekend or the SEAC Public Outreach Grant, visit the web site at http://www.southeasternarchaeology.org/grant.html.
ACHP Archaeology Task Force Update
Read about the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation's strategy to promote archaeology in Heritage Tourism and Public Education. The goal is to expand the Presidents Preserve America initiative by ensuring public enjoyment of our nations heritage through greater knowledge and appreciation of archaeological properties.
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Archaeologists for Global Justice Forms
A new organization, Archaeologists for Global Justice, has recently been formed as a response to the widespread and ever increasing injustice affecting our world. It was conceived and put into motion by archaeologists at the University of Sheffield (UK), and inspired by the actions of Archaeologists Against the War in opposing British involvement in the Iraq conflict. For more information, visit the web site http://www.shef.ac.uk/archaeology/global-justice.html.
Archeology Learning Lab established at Independence National Historical Park
The Independence Park Institute (IPI) at Independence National Historical Park in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania offers education programs that connect participants of all ages to the resources and stories of Independence National Historical Park. A new learning space has been created at IPI to house an Archeology Learning Lab for the IPI's Archeology: History Found in Pieces program. This is a program geared for grades 5-12. Students take on the role of archeologists and piece together the stories of the buried past. Classes receive hands-on experience with replica artifacts and have the opportunity to see archeologists at work processing artifacts from the dig at the National Constitution Center site.
Current Archaeology Museum Exhibits
The American Institute of Archaeology (AIA) maintains a comprehensive listing of current and ongoing exhibits all over the world, divided by geographic region. A great resource for planning your next trip!
Upcoming Archaeology Lectures
Archaeological Institute of America sponsored lectures in the United States and Canada.