Digging up the past to find my future

_DSC0120It’s sad to think that this is the last week of my field school. This was my first experience with archaeology but it certainly will not be my last. I can’t believe how much I have learned in just 5 weeks and how much this experience has changed my perspective on archaeology.

I have learned so many skills and techniques such as troweling, shovel skimming, screening, mapping, and I even learned how to use a compass correctly. These are all important to know for a field school but my favorite times were when I had a trowel in my hand. Using a trowel allows me to get up close to the potential artifacts in the pit and I have learned how to hold it different ways and control it with both of my hands. Having a trowel makes it easier to work on a more detailed area in the pit and I have more control so the chance of breaking an artifact is slim.

Even though we were not digging for dinosaurs (and we did not find any) we still found so many cool artifacts! Finding shards of glass and ceramic may be seem boring to some people and I’ll admit sometimes I was not enthusiastic about it, but then when you think about how you are holding a piece of history it really changes your perspective. It becomes even more exciting when we have pieces with makers marks on them and we can research and find out so much information about a piece you just found in the ground! We have also been finding colored glass and we even find whole bottles. In our pit we found a glass milk bottle and a small perfume bottle. These are just a few awesome things we have found, there are so many other great artifacts that have come from this entire field school. While we do find things that are a part of an interesting and eventful history, archaeology is unique because we find things that are a part of everyday life as well.

Ever since I changed my major to anthropology I never had any doubts about it. I was unsure about what sub-field I wanted to focus on and which direction I should go. I decided to enroll in this field school to determine if I could see myself in the field of archaeology. I thought I might start and end up hating it and then I would be miserable for 5 weeks but at least I would know for sure I didn’t enjoy it. However, this field school and all the people involved in it proved to me that I really enjoy archaeology and I can see a future for myself in this field.
I’ve enjoyed my entire experience of this field school. I have gained so many skills from it and met some great people. I know there is so much more for me to learn and I hope that I get the chance to take part in another field school at some point.