All posts by Alison Stenger

Miscellaneous

http://www.uiweb.uidaho.edu/LS/AACC/   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.

https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Alison_Stenger/ will take you to “ResearchGate”, a website for researchers.  Over 300,000 members are listed, and job openings are posted there.

New: www.oasisnet.org/portland a listing of upcoming talks, for an interested public to attend! A wonderful resource.

http://www.secondchanceranch.org
     If you care about animals, please take a look at this site. 

NAGPRA news

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 www.friendsofpast.org.  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, www.friendsofpast.org.

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.

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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.

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

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

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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.

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

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

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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.

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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.

What To Bring

  • Long sleeved shirt
  • Tee shirts or other casual shirts
  • Windbreaker/rain jacket
  • Tennis shoes (hiking boots are acceptable as an alternative)
  • Hat or cap
  • Change of shoes to wear home (such as tennis shoes)
  • Insect repellent
  • Sunscreen
  • Band aids or other small bandages
  • Water and other liquids
  • Lunch
  • Snacks for mid-morning and mid-afternoon
  • Pencil, Sharpie pen, and notebook (spiral or steno is fine)
  • Camera (optional, plus extra film or card, plus batteries, if needed)
  • Sanitary wipes/hand cleanser (optional but advised)
  • NO shorts on site
  • NO sandals on site
  • At Woodburn or McMinnville, rubber boots are good to have with you

Optional for excavation, but please bring if you have these: Trowel (Marshalltown or Osborne preferred), metric tape measure, clipboard and pencil with eraser.

PHYSICAL EVIDENCE OF SHIPWRECKS ON THE OREGON COAST IN PREHISTORY

PHYSICAL EVIDENCE OF SHIPWRECKS ON THE OREGON COAST IN PREHISTORY
Click on the image to read the complete published article.

Three prehistoric site areas on the Oregon coast have yielded Chinese porcelains. Two are located on the south side of the sand spit at Nehalem Bay (35-TI-4; 35-TI-4b), and the third site is located within the sand spit at Netarts (35-TI-1).

While Spanish galleons are often suggested as the sole source of these materials, the archaeological and historical evidence suggests otherwise. In all, the remains of at least two and probably four ships have been reported. The timber from one ship and a ship’s pulley have been radiocarbon dated, and much of the porcelain has been analyzed. Dates for the prehistoric sites, the ships’ wood, and the porcelains are comparable. Stylistically, however, the two porcelain assemblages represent separate origins.

Pre-Clovis in the Americas: International Science Conference Proceedings

Pre-Clovis in the Americas: International Science Conference Proceedings
Click on the image to purchase this book online

Curious about Paleoamerican sites? Do really old archaeological sites in the Americas hold your interest? What kinds of tools did the earliest people in North and South America use, what environments did they select for living, what foods were important to them? Within these pages, world famous archaeologists and other ancient site specialists report the results of their investigations into some of the oldest and most important archaeological sites and specimens in the New World. For many decades, Clovis was assumed to be the first culture in the Americas. Now, however, sites predating Clovis by literally tens of thousands of years have been recognized. These well documented sites provide far more than the mere validation that sites older than Clovis exist. Importantly, some pre-Clovis site elements, tools, materials, and technologies seem similar to each other, despite appearing in many different geographic regions. Thus, one important task archaeologists now face is to determine what similarities or differences are reflected in these sites and assemblages, and what this can tell us about the people who made them. Additionally, a vast array of occupation environments has now been identified, and the significance of these distinct ecosystems must also be considered. Are these different ecologies suggestive of differing economies and cultural preferences? Are separate and distinct population groups indicated? While the focus of this volume is upon sites and material culture, several additional issues are addressed. Discussions include both the positive and problematic aspects of genetics, and the recognition and analysis of ancient technologies. One question to be addressed is whether the human groups and their tool types descended from a common but distant ancestor? Two other topics discussed briefly are the changes in index species over time and the evidence of dietary change with the extinction of some species of megafauna. Do changes in index species represent more than extinction or survival patterns? Is disease indicated by the elimination of some megafauna but the survival of others? All of these topics, and more, were discussed at a meeting hosted by the Smithsonian Institution.

The Archaeoclimatology Atlas of Oregon: The Modeled Distribution in Space and Time of Past Climates

The Archaeoclimatology Atlas of Oregon: The Modeled Distribution in Space and Time of Past Climates
Click on the image to purchase this book online

Research on the effects of climate change on people and the environment has its roots in decades of study by archaeologists and meteorologists. The Archaeoclimatology Atlas of Oregon provides an in-depth look at the modeled climatic and environmental history of the region over the past 14,000 years and analyzes the relationship between climatic variables and people in the past.

The Macrophysical Climate Model (MCM) used for the atlas presents an innovative means of modeling past climate that has been rigorously tested and verified against field evidence worldwide. Broad-scale reconstructions of specific times in the past provide detailed site-specific graphs of precipitation, temperature, evaporation, and snowfall for more than 75 locations in Oregon.
Applications of the model and its implications for human populations in Oregon are explored for each region of the state, demonstrating the variability of human-climate interactions.