All posts by Alison Stenger

Yamhill River area of McMinnville,

great information about the late Ice Age animals and people of the McMinnville area.

Our sincere thanks to the Barrier Corporation in Tigard and Hertz rentals in McMinnville. Their help allowed us to successfully complete the first phase of our investigation of the Yamhill River area of McMinnville, as discussed in the above site.  and   two great sites on Oregon archaeology and history

Also, while not archaeological, please take a moment to visit:   If you have ever wondered about the Missoula (Bretz) floods, and the effect on much of the Northwest, take a look at this  and   two great sites on Oregon archaeology and history

Miscellaneous   This is a wonderful site, with lots of information about Asian populations, here and around the world. Everything from the cultures of antiquity to modern populations are featured. will take you to “ResearchGate”, a website for researchers.  Over 300,000 members are listed, and job openings are posted there.

New: a listing of upcoming talks, for an interested public to attend! A wonderful resource.
     If you care about animals, please take a look at this site. 


The right of all people to study the prehistory of North America has not been supported by recent legislation.

The ability of persons from America’s Universities, Museums, and Historical Societies to study specimens has been severely limited, and in some cases eliminated. Scientists, historians, and other researchers can no longer access many specimen types, thus making factual studies and findings impossible.

Letters by such lofty institutions as the Smithsonian are posted on the Friends of America’s Past website, at  This is just a partial list of some information provided by that site:

The above information is directly related to Department of the Interior’s position,which ignores all scientific and scholarly historic interests.  The  letters listed above posted on the website of  a science advocacy group, Friends of Americas Past,

River Survey: Examining the area near the sites

Each year, the area upriver from both the McMinnville Mammoth and Bison sites is affected by the flooding of the South Yamhill River. Animal bone, tusk material, and occasionally flaked stone items are recovered from the water each summer, when archaeologists and trained volunteers survey the area.  The following images, provided by Dr. Lyle Hubbard, demonstrate the river environment.



The debris that accumulates in the river makes snorkeling and diving hazardous.  It also, however, slows the flow of the river, allowing paleontological material to accumulate.  Occasionally, artifacts are also observed.


Instructions of how to survey, how to document any potential finds, and how to stay safe are part of a day’s work.


The water is fast, dark, and cold.  When possible items of interest are observed, the shore crew documents locations.


In one area where the river has ripped away the grassy bank, a gravel stratum is exposed. Based upon radiocarbon dates from excavations on land, this stratum is believed to be over 40,000 years old.


Partially submerged flood debris, and slumpted banks, are evidence of a chaotic winter.


A tusk fragment is shown in cross section, showing the inner layers.  This is a remnant of a very large tusk.


Recoveries from the river include a golf ball, a probable deer tooth, a fragment of megafauna (large animal bone) , and a possible flake off the tooth of some species of megafauna.


A lot of equipment, and well trained people, are needed to properly survey even a small section of river.

PCC Hawaii 2014

In 2014, IAS journeyed to the Big Island of Hawaii.  With our site choices custom selected for our class participants, everyone was guaranteed a great time!  We visited rock art sites, fish trap areas, restored and unrestored aquaculture sites, ancient villages, and even learned frond weaving from a Native Hawaiian woman.  We even managed to get in some fabulous meals and great snorkeling.  A few pictures, below, tell the story.