The days leading up to field school had been very stormy, and so I was expecting to find a great deal of water and debris in the units and at the site. However, it seems the location was spared, and there was very little water to be removed.
Field school is almost over, and this was to be our last day of excavation in our units. I was back in Unit 5 for the day, and we were instructed to end our level 6 at 80 centimeters below datum (cmbd), and piece-plot anything that would be removed at that depth but leave deeper items in the floor (any item firmly in the ground is lower than 80 cmbd, and therefore in the next level). Due to the meticulous piece-plotting in our unit, we had been working on level 6 since field day 8, and we were 10 centimeters short of the original goal of 90 cmbd.
There has been a great deal of material coming out of Unit 5, and the large rock is still firmly in the ground. Another large rock has shown up next to it, and much to my disappointment, it will be up to a new group of students to finish the excavation. Both rocks are firmly in the ground, and so belong to a deeper level than the one we have been working on. We were able to bring the floor to 80 cmbd by the end of the day, and so left the cleanup and photo taking for our next field day.
The large rocks, Sharpie shown for size.
Day 12 also seemed to be a day of collapse. The downstairs profile wall had caved in while we were gone. Jim thinks that the wall got too dry and that is what caused it. This makes some sense, as our 12 days of field school have been spread over three months. The stair that was created in Unit 3 continued to dry out and crumble along the edge of our unit. Unit 5 lost a bit of dirt to a collapse along the edge with Unit 6, the floor of which is 20 cm lower. This dirt was carefully removed and screened for any cultural material that may have been within it. All items found were given their own field specimen (FS) number.
The wall collapse.
We will draw the walls of our units and fill them in over our last two days, and then field school will be over. It has been a fantastic learning experience, and I’m grateful to have had the opportunity. It has also been a lot of fun, and I’ll miss school days in the field.