CAP Cafe Intro: Crash Course in Paleoindians

Paleoindian point - image provided by Dr. Lovis

Paleoindian point – image provided by Dr. Lovis

Our second CAP Cafe for the semester is right around the corner, February 25th. For those of you who haven’t been following, our new CAP Cafe series is designed to engage the general public with archaeologists and their research through informal events. At our previous CAP Cafe Dr. O’Gorman discussed her research at Morton Village in Illinois and then provided attendees with a tour of her research lab.  For our upcoming CAP Cafe, Dr. Lovis will be discussing evidence for Paleoindians in Michigan. His talk, titled “The Kennedy and Kalkaska Bifaces, the Plotner and Hipwater Locales: Perspectives on Michigan Paleoindians” will discuss the earliest inhabitants of Michigan.

As a preamble to Dr. Lovis’ presentation, I figured I’d give you a quick crash-course on the peopling of the Americas, Paleoindians and why they are so illusive in Michigan. Through genetic evidence (mtDNA) researchers have found that the founding population in the Americas originated in central Asia as early as 40k years ago. Genetic models indicate that colonization from Beringia occurred around 16.6k years ago. Melting of the ice sheets allowed the coastal corridor to open by 16k years ago, then the interior corridor became accessible by 14k years ago. Both of these routes were utilized by Paleoindians, though it is harder to prove the use of the coastal corridor because most of the sites are currently underwater.

Founding Paleoindian populations used least-cost pathways along riverine and coastal corridors and across homogenous landscapes and quickly populated vast areas of the Americas. Some models indicate that Paleoindians could have populated the continent in as little as 2000 years.

It was long assumed that the Paleoindian economy was focused around the hunting of big game. More recently, broader hunter-gatherer models of have been used to interpret the new data. Many agree that Paleoindians were highly mobile, using a combination of residential and logistical mobility to adapt to the changing environment, leading to a rapid colonization of the Americas.  Because Eastern North America would have been a fairly seasonally stable environment, leading to  species rich landscape which would have been more amenable to a generalized subsistence strategy; because of the lack of local plant knowledge, fauna would have been relied on heavily over flora.

As for Michigan, there is clear evidence that Paleoindians inhabited the area. Southern Michigan became ice-free as early as 14k years ago, and the most northern parts of Michigan were habitable by 11k years ago. Even with this long history, Paleoindian sites are few and far between in Michigan; this is due to many factors. First off, the transient and highly-mobile behavior of their hunting strategies resulted in ephemeral archaeological signatures; they didn’t leave much behind. The Paleoindian sites that have been discovered, generally consist of only a handful of projectile points. Additionally, low population densities during this time period makes it difficult to find sites archaeologically. Finally, like the case for the coastal migration, Paleoindian sites in Michigan are now underwater. Hypsithermal warming events occurring around 10k years ago, resulted in rising water levels and a flooding of the would be shoreline which would have been heavily utilized by Paleoindians hunting large game like caribou.

Hopefully, this crash course in Paleoindians provided slight intrigue that will encourage you to attend our next CAP Cafe and learn more about the Paleoindians of Michigan. Please join us, Thursday, February 25, 7pm in Mcdonel C103.



Pitblado, Bonnie L.
2011 A tale of two migrations: Reconciling recent biological and archaeological evidence for the Pleistocene peopling of the Americas. Journal of Archaeological Research 19: 327-375.

O’Gorman J. and W. Lovis

2006 Before Removal: An Archaeological Perspective on the Southern Lake Michigan Basin, In The Potawatomi Removal, Special Issue Guest Edited by Mark Schurr. Midcontinental Journal of Archaeology 31(1):21-56.

Why all the fuss about the Onondaga Pottery Co.?

As every archaeologist knows for every hour you spend in the field, you can expect to spend 4 hours in the lab. This has proven true for our recent field school excavations. A fruitful 5 week field school this past summer has left us with hours and hours of lab work. Our steadfast team of undergrad volunteers has been chugging along since September and we’ve finally put a dent in the artifact cataloging, yay! Now that we’re beginning to understand our vast array of artifacts, we can start to analyze patterns and research artifact types.

Onondaga Pottery, a.k.a. Syracuse China

Onondaga Pottery, a.k.a. Syracuse China: Gunson Unit D

One of the most common pottery types we found during our excavations of the Gunson site was green striped Onondaga Pottery Company Syracuse China. The company was initially founded as Farrar Pottery 1841, and changed hands a number of times until it became the Onondaga Pottery Company in 1871. Located in Geddes New York, Onondaga was named after Onondaga county, where it was located.

Onondaga Pottery Company quickly built a reputation for having high quality earthenware. Later, their shift to semi-vitreous China made them a nationally renowned pottery company. Their non-crackle guarantee (during this time the glaze on most American made pottery would crack, leaving marks across the product) made them the first pottery company in the US to carry such a warranty.

O.P.Co Makers Mark with date stamp - July 1914. Gunson Unit A

O.P.Co Makers Mark with date stamp – July 1914. Gunson Unit A

In 1884, the Onondaga Pottery Company teamed with Elmer Walter, who had a China decorating factory directly across the street from Onondaga Pottery. Before this partnership Onondaga produced only plain white China. Later, when Elmer’s factory was destroyed by fire, Onondaga hired Elmer and created an in-house pottery decorating department, one of the first of its kind.

Another O.P.CO. makers mark - Gunson Unit A

Another O.P.CO. makers mark – Gunson Unit A

The biggest turn for the company came in 1884 when James Pass became the company’s superintendent. James Pass, the son of Richard Pass the previous superintendent, grew up studying pottery. James studied analytical chemistry at Syracuse University in order to understand and overcome the problems in pottery manufacturing. When James became superintendent he developed America’s first truly vitreous china, known as Syracuse China.

The development of Syracuse China made the Onondaga Company what it is today. The company did not officially change its name until the 1960s, it quickly became known as Syracuse China because of the product’s popularity. The company found an intense market for Syracuse China in places like hotels, restaurants, and railroad companies. Onondaga’s 1896 chip resistant technology only enhanced its popularity in these markets.

Taking the history of the Onondaga Pottery Company a.k. Syracuse China, into consideration it’s easy to understand why we discovered so much of this pottery in the refuse pit on MSU’s campus. This high-quality, durable, china would have been ideal for a college campus. Dinner ware that can hold up to the trauma inflicted by college students and visitors is well worth its weight in gold.  With regards to the Gunson house, it may have served as more everyday serving ware as we also have Onondaga Pottery Company ceramic fragments that are not the three green stripes.  These examples are more delicate and detailed, with embossing and scalloping although we have yet to find a fragment with a date stamp.



CAP Represents at the Midwest Archaeological Conference 2015

This past weekend CAP attended the Midwest Archaeological Conference in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Several grad students and faculty presented their research and represented the outstanding work happening at MSU.

CAP Poster Presentation:

Lisa Bright, Katy Meyers-Emery, and Amy Michaels- More Than Just Nightsoil: Preliminary Findings from Michigan State University’s First Privy – download here

In addition to a poster presentation, Campus Archaeology was excited to be asked to be a part of the Campus Archaeologies in the Midwest Session. Organized by William Green and Shannon Fie from Beloit College, this session explored the variety of archaeology occurring on college campuses throughout the Midwest. Dr. Goldstein presented on CAP, Michigan State University’s Campus Archaeology Program: What We’ve Done and What We’ve Learned. Her presentation explained the successful strategies of CAP and how CAP has culminated into its current position within the university. Dr. Goldstein stressed the importance of creating lasting results within he university, such as the University’s Master Plan.

Lisa Bright, Katy Meyers-Emery, and Kate Frederick presented The Only Things Constant is Change: Maintaining Continuity in the MSU Campus Archaeology Program. One of the major challenges of CAP is the regular turnover in not only the University’s administration, but also the turnover in the position of Campus Archaeologist and CAP fellows. Our presentation explained the mechanisms we have in place to create continuity, i.e. GIS (see Katy’s post), and how we prevent having to reinvent the wheel every year.

Other papers in the session were as follows….

William Green (Beloit College)Archaeology on/off the Campus

Robert Sasso (University of Wisconsin-Parkside)- In the Field Away and at Home: Archaeological Investigations on Two College Campuses in Southeastern Wisconsin

Shannon Fie (Beloit College)- Geophysics at Beloit College: A Tool for Sustaining Campus Archaeology

Mark Schurr (University of Notre Dame)- Exploring the Foundations of University of Notre Dame 2015: The Return to Old College

Darlene Brooks-Hedstrom and Caitlin Lobl (Wittenberg University) Campus Archaeology as a Catalyst for Partnership between Alumni, Students, and the Administration at Wittenberg University

John Doershuk, William Whittaker, and Angela Collins (University of Iowa)- Hubbard Park and Voxman School of Music: Campus Archaeology at the University of Iowa

Russel Skowronek (University of Texas Pan American)- Discussant, MSU Alum, and Co-Author of Beneath the Ivory Tower: The Archaeology of Academia

There were some interesting general topics to take away from the presentations. First of all, archaeology conducted on college campuses is very high profile, and because of this, should be used to its full advantage. For our CAP, hundreds of people pass by our excavations each day, so taking the time to explain why we’re conducting archaeology, and how it effects the larger campus community is integral for sustaining our program. Campus archaeology should involve and invite the entire campus community. Engage not only the current students who happen to stumble past the excavation, but also seek out alumni who potentially have insight about the area, or deep pockets to fund further excavations. Because archaeology can be so hands-on, it’s easy to intrigue a wide range of people, from life-long-learners to toddlers, archaeology can be family friendly and engaging. Campus archaeology has the ability connect students to broader research goals. The presentation by Wittenberg University, explained how one student’s involvement with her campus archaeology program led to further success in studies abroad. Russel Skowronek, the discussant for the session stressed that, while it’s easy for archaeologists to see the advantages of campus archaeology, we need to find ways to ensure that the university understands those advantages.

Introducing CAP Cafe

This year CAP will be introducing a new public outreach series called CAP Cafe. This will be a monthly series geared towards the general public, and it will explore all things archaeology. While Campus Archaeology regularly presents for public outreach events, such as MSU Science Festival and Grandparents University, it often ends up being for a limited audience. CAP Cafe will allow us to educate and entertain the public about the awesome world of archaeology.

The first CAP Cafe will be our second annual Apparitions and Archaeology Campus Tour, on October 29th, 7pm. This free event will give a historic tour of MSU’s campus, stopping at the most haunted locations. MSU’s Paranormal Society will join CAP for this event and test areas for any paranormal activity. Join us in this haunting experience to learn about the spooky history of MSU, the archaeology of each historic site, and maybe meet some of MSU’s historic residents, i.e. ghosts.

Because we want the CAP Cafe series to be engaging to the public, we’ll be switching up the content and format every month. Some months  will be structured as a discussion on an archaeological topic and some months will be geared more towards kids with hands-on activities. Our goal is to engage the entire spectrum of the general public. While a majority of the CAP Cafe series will revolve around Campus Archaeology and our collections, we’ll also have other MSU archaeology professors and grad students present their archaeological research.

A few ideas for our upcoming CAP Cafes are:

“What we did this Summer”- Learn about CAP’s awesome discoveries on campus this summer, which include MSU’s first privy, and our excavations of Professor Gunson’s garbage.

Flint Knapping- Ever been curious about how stone tools are made? Join us for an instructional tutorial on making a projectile point.

Map Making- Every archaeologist needs to know how to create a site map. This workshop will explain the importance of maps in archaeology, show the utility of Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and explain how to make a sketch map with only a compass.

Since we want the CAP Cafe series to engage the public, we want to hear from you. What specific archaeological things would you like to see, or learn about for the series? Are there areas or time periods that interest you? Do you want to know more about the archaeological process? Do you just want to meet some really cool archaeologists? Give us your comments, find us on Facebook (, or Tweet us @capmsu.

Lessons Learned as Campus Archaeologist

Looking back at my tenure as Campus Archaeologist it’s clear that I’ve learned invaluable lessons in the past two years. Not only have I gained valuable skills in social media and public outreach, but I’ve been able to hone my archaeological skills. So here is a quick list of lessons learned.

I’ve learned how to mitigate the cultural heritage of MSU. Understanding how construction on campus is managed and balancing the multiple construction projects with the proper archaeology was a huge learning curve, but integral to my career. It’s important to cultivate relationships with construction companies across campus so they understand the importance of archaeology. While getting a call at 8am on a Saturday morning from construction letting you know they found something, can be annoying, it means the contractors see the necessity of archaeology.

I’ve learned that whether it’s your first find, or hundredth find it’s exciting. Discovering the unknown, or long forgotten can get the blood pumping every time. Finding that first artifact or feature and unraveling the data to get answers makes archaeology fun and rewarding. When we found the privy this summer it went from being a pile of burned brick to MSU’s first outhouse that revealed more about early campus than any archival document thus far.

I’ve learned to always expect the unexpected. Never assume that you won’t find any archaeology, because you will be sorely disappointed. When mitigating the construction on campus, you have to sometimes put priority on certain areas over others, for example we’re more likely to find archaeology on the north side of campus, but that doesn’t mean we can/should ignore the rest of campus.

I’ve learned you have to do your research…then do it again. Using multiple archival sources gives you a more complete picture of campus. When we discovered the original Vet Lab I had researched the area before construction began, but I neglected to look at pre-1890’s maps that had the Vet Lab labeled. I learned to think outside the box when collecting archival research.

Finally, I’ve learned that a solid crew makes the work easier and the archaeology more fun. It’s an important lesson to learn the value of a crew, one that you can trust to do the archaeology and that offer feedback and insight during projects.

While my tenure as Campus Archaeologist is up, I’m continuing as a CAP fellow where hopefully I can pass on my lessons learned and continue to hone my archaeological skills.




Expecting the unexpected for summer construction projects

As students begin to file out of campus, the orange cones start lining up as a sign of the upcoming summer construction projects. This will be my second summer as Campus Archaeologist and I feel much more prepared this year to expect the unexpected. We’ve been researching in the archives for the past couple of months to make sure we are prepared for every historic feature that may be potentially disturbed throughout the summer. While last year I was caught off-guard with our early discovery of the first Vet Lab, this summer I have a full crew on deck and historic maps in my pocket, so we’re ready to tackle the summer.

The main summer construction project that will occupy CAP is the Phase 4 (final phase) of the North Campus Infrastructure Improvements, or the West Circle steam tunnel renovations. This project will occur in the area between the MSU Museum, Olds Hall and the Library, a very old part of campus. There are three historic buildings that will most likely be affected: the first Williams Hall, the second Wells Hall, and the mechanical engineering shops. CAP is working closely with Granger Construction to insure that we have time to properly survey these areas, and if necessary excavate.

If you’ve been following our blog you know that the second Wells Hall, built in 1916, was torn down in the 1956 to accommodate the new library. Part of the footprint of the second Wells Hall is under the Library’s east parking lot. This parking lost is slated to be torn up and resurfaced, so CAP can sneak in during this process and shovel test. When we shovel test for Wells Hall we want to see if any of the foundation is buried, or if it was completely removed when is was razed. Also, we’re hoping to find artifacts that tell us about the early days of dorm life at MSU.

A new area that we haven’t surveyed too much is the area of the mechanical engineering shops. These shops would have been located to the east of Olds Hall and used for the mechanical engineering program. Associated with the mechanical shops was the power plant, built in 1884, to provide steam forced heat for the university. Previous research on the history of MSU’s power plants indicated that at its inceptions, MSU students were required to feed the coal burning power plant. This adds an interesting element to the potential archaeology of the area since student activity and use of the area was mandatory in order to keep the university heated.

Finally, the West Circle steam tunnel renovations may disturb the foundation of the original Williams Hall. Williams Hall was built in 1869 and burned in 1919. This building housed 80 students and the basement was the cafeteria that fed the university for decades. CAP found a cornerstone of Williams Hall back in 2009, so we know the foundation still exists.

We’ll keep you updated as the construction gets underway.

CAP Detective Work

For the past couple of weeks Lisa Bright and I have been scouring the MSU Archives trying to a) decide on a location for the 2015 Summer Field School, and b) shed light on the mystery assemblage found behind Hannah Admin Building. See Makers Marks from the Admin Assemblage, Sorting the Admin Artifact Assemblage, and Ceramic Decorations from the Admin Assemblage for more info. As these blog posts mention the Admin Assemblage is interesting because it has several different types of high quality ceramics, a ton of glass (window, bottle etc..) and an assortment of lab equipment (beakers, test tubes, and thermometers). Much of the glass has been burned, initially leading us to conclude the assemblage was a result of the burning of the Engineering Building in 1915. However, the random assortment of ceramics which date to as early as the 1870s made us question that original assumption. Lisa and I approached the archival research with the goal of figuring out where/what this assemblage is from, and if there is a larger site/deposit that could be excavated for the field school.

Campus Map 1941, #61 is Wells Hall and #63 is the Gunsen House

Campus Map 1941, #61 is Wells Hall and #63 is the Gunson House, courtesy MSU Archives

Using our detective-like skill set, we began by looking at historic campus maps and aerial photos. Using these documents we were able to track which buildings were in the general area, when they were built, and when they were destroyed. The most obvious, and closest buildings in the area were buildings related to Mechanical Engineering, i.e. the Machines Shops and the Foundry. Josh has been researching these buildings, so we expanded our area and pinpointed two buildings of interest, the second Wells Hall (not to be confused with the first that burned in 1905, or the third, that was built in 1968) and Professor Gunson’s residence (which changes names several times).

The second Wells Hall was built in 1907 and housed 200 students. It was located northwest of the Hannah Admin Building (not built until 1950), where the library now stands. Wells Hall was razed in 1966 to make room for the the east wing addition of the library. Because of its proximity to the Admin Building, the early construction of Wells Hall, and its resulting demolition around the time of the construction of Hannah, this building is a good candidate for the Admin Assemblage. To confirm this relation, we are now digging into the construction and demolition records for Wells Hall to see if there is any mention of dumping debris by the river.

Prof. Gunsen's Residence, ca. 1920. Courtesy MSU Archives

Prof. Gunson’s Residence, ca. 1920. Courtesy MSU Archives

The Gunson Residence was also a potential option for the assemblage. The house was built in 1892 and was the residence of Prof. Thomas Gunson until his death in 1940. After Prof. Gunson’s death, the house changed names several times in the following decades until it was demolished to make way for the construction of the library.

After reading about the Gunson House, Lisa and I decided to dig deeper to see if this random house on campus could be the answer to our mystery assemblage. Tune in next week for Lisa’s findings on the Gunson House after 1940. To be continued….


Planning for Summer Construction

This coming Thursday CAP has a meeting with MSU Infrastructure Planning and Facilities (IPF) and Granger construction to discuss the upcoming summer construction projects. Most importantly, Phase 4 (final phase) of the North Campus Infrastructure Improvement, a.k.a the steam tunnel project. This project began in the summer of 2012, in an effort to upgrade the 100 year old steam tunnels. CAP has worked closely with this project because a) it is taking place in the heart of historic campus, West Circle; and b) it gives CAP the opportunity to explore huge areas of buried MSU.

Unfortunately, this project is quite destructive to any potential archaeology, so my job is to do the proper research so CAP can preemptively excavate, or at least be prepared for any findings. Last summer, during Phase 3, you may recall that CAP discovered the foundation of the original Vet Lab, built in 1885. This discovery caught us off guard, and though we were able to hold off construction so we could excavate, it was not an ideal situation. I’ll be much more prepared this summer.

Plans detailing 2014's North Campus Infrastructure Improvements; courtesy MSU IPF

Plans detailing 2014’s North Campus Infrastructure Improvements; courtesy MSU IPF

IPF always gives us the construction blueprints, which detail every aspect of the construction process. From digging the 30ft deep steam tunnels to tree removal, these plans allow CAP to make a game plan for how we’re going to approach the construction, i.e. simple shovel testing or full excavation. For Phase 4, the final steam tunnel replacements will cut across Olds Hall and towards the MSU Museum. I’ve been compiling historic maps and photos to see if any of these cuts will impact historical features. Currently, I’ve discovered three potential structures: the Vet Lab, the Mechanical shops, and the original steam tunnels. The steam tunnels are too deep for us to shovel test or excavate, so we can only monitor until something is found. Most likely, we’ll shovel test beforehand to determine if the remains of the Vet Lab and Mechanical shops will be disturbed.

At the upcoming meeting on Thursday we’ll explain our findings, and our concern for the possible destruction of these historic features, then we’ll create a strategy that allows for archaeology, but does not severally inhibit the construction. IPF and Granger understand the significance of the cultural heritage of MSU and are always willing to accommodate our archaeology.

In addition to the steam tunnel project, there are a handful of other construction projects occurring on campus this summer. MSU’s campus is constantly being renovated and upgraded to accommodate the ever-growing university. It is CAP’s goal to discover and disseminate the history on which MSU has built its name.


Holiday Celebrations at M.A.C

As the students scatter home for the holiday break and campus empties I find myself curious about how the early MSU students celebrated the holidays.

Linton Hall, ca. 1900. Courtesy MSU Archives

Linton Hall, ca. 1900. Courtesy MSU Archives

Because the university focused on agriculture, the summer semester was required and there was a longer break from mid-November to the end of February. Even though  there was a long winter break, many students could be found on campus during the holidays. In a 1897 edition of The M.A.C. Record the campus is described as having a “nice Christmas snow, but not enough for a sleighing.” Later editions of The M.A.C. Record report on how the faculty celebrated the holidays; “Mr. Bland Edwards spent the holidays with his parents, at the college….Miss Marshall, stenographer of the farm department, spent Christmas at her home.” The holiday break was also a popular time for alumni to visit the campus; I.W. Bush, of ’04 [class of 1904] was a college visitor one day the past week. Mr. Bush is engaged in accident insurance business” and “on Christmas day, Prof. Kedzie called on Mr. Boyer, former student and instructor in chemistry the past year, in the government laboratory, in the Stock Yard district…on the 24th he met T.L. Hankinson, ’98 [class of 1898] in one of the downtown stores. Mr. Hankinson is now located in Charleston Ill., where he is teaching Biology in the high school.”

Christmas Tree in front of the Union, date unknown. Courtesy MSU Archives

Christmas Tree in front of the Union, date unknown. Courtesy MSU Archives

Although I couldn’t find any record, there are several historic pictures of buildings decorated with lights for the holidays. In addition to decorating buildings, historical records reveal that Christmas trees were decorated across campus; “the day school, as well as the M.A.C. Sunday school…both displayed fine Christmas trees” and “Howard Terrace must have at least six chimneys since Santa Clause visited six homes in the building and bedecked six beautiful and well filled Christmas trees at the same hour on Christmas Eve.”

Morrill Hall, ca. 1890. Courtesy MSU Archives

Morrill Hall, ca. 1890. Courtesy MSU Archives

Historical pictures show that more than just faculty and students occupied campus during the holidays, children were also a prevalent feature. Christmas events tailored to the children of the faculty and staff are evident in the historical records; “Santa Clause was doing double duty in delighting the youngest children with continual surprises and distributing welcome presents.” and “the M.A.C. Sunday School held Christmas exercises in the schoolhouse…and at their close, the lights were blown out…since Santa would arrive soon.”

Winter is Coming: The Cold Days of CAP

It’s official, winter is coming. Scratch that, it’s here. I woke up this morning to a snow dusted car and icy roads (bonus points for avoiding the fishtailing 4×4). In the best years I’m an extreme, fair weather fan of winter. By the end of August I’m usually looking forward to the cooling weather, changing leaves, and enjoying the beauty of freshly fallen snow…for about 6 weeks. By the time January roles around I’m already cursing the frigid temperatures and dreaming of the sun and sweat of summer archaeology. After last winter’s arctic blasts and record breaking snow falls, I think my tolerance this year is at an all time low. I commute an hour to campus, so the winter of 2014 was downright traumatizing.

While winter is clearly not my favorite season, and definitely not an exciting one for Michigan archaeology, it is a good time to catch up on everything. CAP had a busy summer with the discovery of the Vet Lab, shovel testing People’s Park, and an excavation of a trash pit on the LAST day of digging. The fall was equally busy with planning for our Apparitions and Archaeology Halloween event and creating the historic panels for Chittenden Hall (these will soon be displayed in  Chittenden so stop by and check them out). While I’m not looking forward to the winter weather, I am looking forward to the slower winter months.

That is not to say that we wont be busy at CAP, everyone is still working diligently on their projects. But during the cold winter months we have more time to cozy into the archives and keep warm in the lab. This may be a sad statement, but I’m excited to catch up on reports and lab work. To, not only finally have the time to devote to these endeavors, but to have enough time to do them well. I am never quite relaxed and comfortable until everything is in its proper place, labeled, cataloged, and filed.  I love fieldwork as much as the next archaeologist, but it’s calming to know that everything we find in the field properly cataloged and available for research, and not just thrown onto a shelf, never to be studied again.

Over the winter it’s my goal to finish the accessioning. Since we received official Site numbers from the State last year, we’ve been accessioning our artifacts through the MSU Museum. It is a tedious process to go through and label all the artifacts we’ve found since 2005, but it’s great to familiarize myself with every single artifact CAP has excavated. Other CAP fellows Blair and Lisa will be helping me on the accession project throughout the winter.

I should enjoy the winter while it lasts, because before I know it we’ll be planning our Summer 2015 Field School and preparing for another whirlwind summer.