Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Sarah and Emily's Bottle

This 'torpedo' bottle was painstakingly pieced together by Sarah and Emily in the Arch lab. It took over an hour to complete and less than 10 seconds to pull apart again. Adhesive materials are highly distructive to artefacts, and for this reason we were not able to leave the bottle pieced together. A bottle such as this one would most likely have contained corbonated water.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Dr Timbo and Top Archaeologist Jody

Do I have to go

here are a few pictures of what has been unearthed during the last few days ... we hit the sub floor deposit and amazing objects have been uncovered ... a few are still in situ and have not been recovered ... no one wants to leave the site at the end of the day because of the artefacts being enearthed ... it is all good

Michael excavating a shoe

{above} Sarah came up from her job as site artist for a 40 minute break .... stayed 4 hours

Kara and jaqui found a pot ... most amazing find !!!

You have to be an archaeologist to get so excited over a bit of rubbish left over from 150 years ago ... we found pins attached to cloth , metal bits , 5 shoes and some pots today ... dirt digging ... it is all good !!!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Extreme Archaeology!

On Sunday 13th of Jan. We excavated in gale force winds and were quickly covered in dirt! It was also a battle to stand up when wind gusts came a-calling. Then it rained at about 4:45pm. There were some great finds to come out of the trench that day however: a shoe, partial wine bottle, a glass congac flask, a fragment of ceramic with the Rhine pattern, two bricks with a broard arrow on it, a key, and a metal ring that could have come from a pan.

The Key

Pan Rim

Brick with the broard arrow

There has also been alot happening in the Lab! Cleaning, Sorting and Cataloguing. The special or diagnostic artefacts are also being drawn, by our talented volunteers Sarah and Michelle, and photographed by a few others. The photography process can also help identify atrefacts that combine to make a vessel or ornament when they have been found in different parts of the trench. Below is Me (Laus) puting the final piece on a 20th century ornamental Clogg with a blue image of windmills and water (pictured further below).

The visitors center here at Port Arthur is very informative and interactive. Pictured is Ally being sentanced and also in shackles.

That just about brings you up to speed for the moment,
Lauren (a humble volunteer)

Monday, January 14, 2008

Nails! Nails! Nails!

Most people may not consider nails to be an exciting topic, however us lucky volunteer archaeologists at Port Arthur have found differently. Every day, thousands of nails are being cleaned, measured and counted and we have found that we have now grown to love Brad and the other many nails in our lives. But we were traumastised this morning when we walked into the lab to find that in our exuburance we had completed all nail related tasks and were therefore reduced to completing the task of washing artefacts from 2001.....However we would like to highlight the fact that may not have been picked up in this speel, is that nails rock!
Kara and Jasmine
PS Tash is the best break dancer in Radelaide

Hi there-

Hi there folks. This is Tash reporting from Port Arthur. Although the weather has been all over the place, our digs have been productive. Yesterday Alex and I went out to the Separate Prison to dig with good old Uncle Greg. We strung the trench, cleared all loose surface debris, photographed the trench, took dumpy level measurements, and began excavating. Today is a busy day in the lab, I have been cataloguing paint samples all morning.

Well take care
Tash - volunteer and best break dancer in Radelaide!

Scorpion Rock Lookout .... Port Arthur
Greg and Michael {both from the University of New England } photographing artefacts from previous excavations ... just one of the jobs volunteers undertake ....its all good.

The wind speed today reached speeds of up to 100kmh ... any sane person would of stayed indoors ... not these archaeologists ...amazing finds appeared today ... a leather boot , bottle and as always nails
[pictured left to right , Jody , Michelle , Sara , K.B , Will ,Dr.Timbo and Lauren]

Sunday, January 13, 2008

The Artefacts

Hey there loyal archaeology buffs!

So far there has been lots happening over here at Port Arthur. The Hospital dig is going well and some interesting finds are being excavated- a trade token from a shop in Hobart Town was uncovered, lots of hand made nails, made by the boys from Point Puer during convict times. Also a convict made vessel with a green lead glaze was excavated from near the Separate Prison and was cleaned in the Lab last Thursday. The majority of the pieces of this vessel were jigsaw puzzled back into the greater part of the vessel.

The weather here for excavation ranges from a hot and windy 30 degrees to cold gale force winds and this can occur in the space of one day! It rained for the first time this morning and there are gale force winds forcast, hopefully this won't interfere too much with the advancement of the excavations.

Saturday, January 12, 2008

{pictured ... Alex sorting last years artefacts }

Artefacts from last years season are being photographed and catalogued, just a small part what goes on behind the scenes.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Behind the Scenes

Not many people realise the amount of work that occurs behind the scenes of an archeaological dig. After the 'fun part' of digging in the trench, every artifact that has been collected must be cleaned, categorised, bagged, tagged, measured and catalogued before it can be either put on display or stored.
Here at Pt Arthur we have an onsite lab where volunteers are carefully preparing aritacts found at the current Hospital site dig. Some artifacts from previous digs are now on display, which the public are welcome to come and look at.
(pictured: Lauren and Emily cleaning nails.)

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Hello to all the Port Arthur archaeology buffs out there !! If you have already been along to see the site, we hope you had a wonderful time and learnt something new. If you have not yet had the chance, then please do, you wont regret it!!

Here is a picture of what our trench at the 2nd hospital site looked like as of yesterday. Can you see any features which might be of interest to archaeologists?? Artifacts we have recovered so far mainly can be identified as nails, but we have also uncovered glass, ceramic, a door hinge and a really interesting shopping token.

Stay tuned for more......

(pictured: Greg, Jodie, Tash, Jasmine)

A nice place to dig

Dr Timbo and Top Archaeologist Jody explaining to a group of visitors the history of the site and the reason behind this years archaeological excavation .