March Meeting Announcement — Jessie Caldwell Memorial Lecture

Join us on Fri­day, March 16th at 7:00 pm in Room 132 of the Archae­ol­o­gy Build­ing on the U of S Cam­pus (55 Cam­pus Dri­ve) for our annu­al Jessie Cald­well Memo­r­i­al Lec­ture! Dr. Mary Malainey (Bran­don Uni­ver­si­ty) will be speak­ing on “Archae­o­log­i­cal Sci­ence and the Archae­ol­o­gist”. All are wel­come to attend!

Abstract: Archae­o­log­i­cal Sci­ence and the Archae­ol­o­gist
Archae­ol­o­gists have a some­what awk­ward rela­tion­ship with sci­ence. Ana­lyt­i­cal tech­niques are used to esti­mate the age of a site, study arti­fact func­tion, estab­lish human behav­iours and inves­ti­gate migra­tion and trade. Although archae­ol­o­gists rely on infor­ma­tion derived from sci­en­tif­ic prin­ci­ples, process­es and pro­ce­dures, they are typ­i­cal­ly trained with­in the Fac­ul­ty of Arts. This can make it dif­fi­cult for archae­ol­o­gists to eval­u­ate dif­fer­ent ana­lyt­i­cal tech­niques, under­stand the sci­ence behind them and know what results are real­is­ti­cal­ly attain­able. An added chal­lenge is that the mate­ri­als under inves­ti­ga­tion may have degrad­ed over time or been con­t­a­m­i­nat­ed by the bur­ial envi­ron­ment (or the archae­ol­o­gists who col­lect­ed them). A wide vari­ety of meth­ods used to study archae­o­log­i­cal mate­r­i­al will be dis­cussed with respect to how they work and how archae­ol­o­gists can use them to their best advan­tage to address their research ques­tions.

Biog­ra­phy: Dr. Mary Malainey
Dr. Mary E. Malainey is an archae­ol­o­gist and pro­fes­sor at Bran­don Uni­ver­si­ty with degrees from the Uni­ver­si­ties of Alber­ta, Saskatchewan and Man­i­to­ba. A strong inter­est in archae­o­log­i­cal sci­ence led her away from CRM work in Saskatchewan and into the lab where she devel­oped nov­el tech­niques for the study of ancient food residues. Using gas chro­matog­ra­phy and gas chro­matog­ra­phy-mass spec­trom­e­try, she ana­lyzes lipid residues extract­ed from archae­o­log­i­cal mate­ri­als. This approach makes it pos­si­ble to char­ac­ter­ize the for­mer con­tents of pre­con­tact Indige­nous ves­sels, deter­mine the types of foods pre­pared using hot rock cook­ing tech­niques and assess the func­tion of flaked and ground stone tools. Dr. Malainey has ana­lyzed archae­o­log­i­cal mate­r­i­al from sites locat­ed across North Amer­i­ca and oth­er parts of the world, includ­ing South Africa, Tunisia, the Balka­ns and Tier­ra del Fuego. Her pri­ma­ry research involves West­ern Cana­di­an Late Pre­con­tact pot­tery, its func­tion and impli­ca­tions for set­tle­ment and sub­sis­tence pat­terns. She also uses com­put­er-assist­ed design soft­ware to trans­form par­tial­ly recon­struct­ed ves­sels into mod­els of whole pots, which are more suit­able for mor­pho­log­i­cal stud­ies. Her 2011 text­book titled A Consumer’s Guide to Archae­o­log­i­cal Sci­ence was writ­ten to help archae­ol­o­gists bet­ter under­stand the sci­en­tif­ic tech­niques avail­able for the analy­sis of their mate­ri­als.

February Meeting Announcement

Join us on Fri­day, Feb­ru­ary 9th at 5:00 pm in Louis’ Loft (2nd Floor of the Memo­r­i­al Union Build­ing, 93 Cam­pus Dri­ve) for our month­ly meet­ing! Dr. Mar­garet Kennedy (Depart­ment of Archae­ol­o­gy & Anthro­pol­o­gy, U of S) and Butch Amund­son (Stan­tec) will be pre­sent­ing “Results of Archae­o­log­i­cal Inven­to­ry and Remote Sens­ing by UAV of the South­ern End of the Cabri Lake Basin”. All are wel­come!

Abstract: Results of Archae­o­log­i­cal Inven­to­ry and Remote Sens­ing by UAV of the South­ern End of the Cabri Lake Basin
For the past five years, Mar­garet Kennedy and Bar­ney Reeves of Alber­ta have been con­duct­ing archae­o­log­i­cal inven­to­ry of the moraine land­scape around the Forks of the Red Deer and South Saskatchewan rivers where they have found a very rich and impor­tant array of stone fea­ture sites. The shift of the project into the south­ern end of Cabri Lake basin has allowed them to assess how the site pat­tern­ing found at the Forks con­nects with the equal­ly impres­sive archae­ol­o­gy of Cabri Lake. Our 2017 field­work took place around the impor­tant water source called Mud­dy Springs on the Palmer Ranch and, thanks to the help of vol­un­teers, we were able to inves­ti­gate a large area around the springs in May and June. Mar­garet will present the results of that work, set with­in the con­text of cur­rent under­stand­ing of the archae­o­log­i­cal land­scape of the area.

In Octo­ber 2017, mas­sive wild­fires burned through the Empress area of south­east­ern Alber­ta and south­west­ern Saskatchewan, expos­ing thou­sands of stone fea­tures. The fires burned through Kennedy and Reeves’ spring 2017 study area. Butch Amund­son, with sup­port from Tom Howat, Kevin Grover and Grant Wise­man of Stan­tec, kind­ly agreed to fly a por­tion of the burned area on the Palmer Ranch by UAV as an exten­sion to their ear­li­er research into the com­par­i­son of the results of con­ven­tion­al archae­o­log­i­cal sur­vey vs. pho­to­graph­ic and near-infrared sen­sors, high res­o­lu­tion satel­lite imagery and appli­ca­tion of veg­e­ta­tive analy­sis and com­put­er object recog­ni­tion. Butch will present the results of that study.

Mar­garet Kennedy is an Asso­ciate Pro­fes­sor in the Dept. of Archae­ol­o­gy and Anthro­pol­o­gy at the U of S and a long-stand­ing Direc­tor of the Saska­toon Archae­o­log­i­cal Soci­ety and First Vice-Pres­i­dent of the Saskatchewan Archae­o­log­i­cal Soci­ety. The research into pre-con­tact stone fea­ture sites along the low­er Red Deer and South Saskatchewan rivers (with Bar­ney Reeves) and Cabri Lake (with Chris and Lau­ra Foley) has tak­en most of her atten­tion over the past sev­en years but not detract­ed from her long­time pas­sion for His­tor­i­cal Archae­ol­o­gy as well.

Butch Amund­son is an archae­ol­o­gist, anthro­pol­o­gist and geol­o­gist with 38 years of expe­ri­ence, includ­ing 32 years as a full­time, pro­fes­sion­al archae­ol­o­gist in all phas­es of archae­o­log­i­cal impact assess­ment and mit­i­ga­tion, palaeon­to­log­i­cal assess­ment, tra­di­tion­al knowl­edge stud­ies, Indige­nous and pub­lic engage­ment, envi­ron­men­tal site assess­ments and envi­ron­men­tal geol­o­gy. In 2016 Butch, along with Kevin Grover and Grant Wise­man of Stan­tec, very suc­cess­ful­ly demon­strat­ed that mul­ti­spec­tral pho­togram­me­try, cap­tured from a UAS plat­form, would dis­cov­er archae­o­log­i­cal fea­tures in a native prairie land­scape.

Bri­an (Bar­ney) Reeves has over 50 years of research and pro­fes­sion­al expe­ri­ence, spe­cial­iz­ing in North Amer­i­can archae­ol­o­gy, eth­no­his­to­ry and cul­tur­al resource man­age­ment. He was a pio­neer in the devel­op­ment of tra­di­tion­al-use stud­ies with Indige­nous groups in Alber­ta and has been active­ly involved in many con­sul­ta­tion pro­grams. Bar­ney is the Founder and Prin­ci­pal Archae­ol­o­gist of Life­ways of Cana­da Lim­it­ed, Alberta’s old­est cul­tur­al resource con­sult­ing and con­tract­ing com­pa­ny, estab­lished in 1972. He is also Pro­fes­sor Emer­i­tus in Archae­ol­o­gy, Uni­ver­si­ty of Cal­gary, where he taught for 30 years.

January Meeting Announcement

Join us on Fri­day, Jan­u­ary 19th at 7:00 pm in Room 132 of the Archae­ol­o­gy Build­ing on the U of S Cam­pus (55 Cam­pus Dri­ve) for the first meet­ing of 2018! Four grad­u­ate stu­dents will be speak­ing on the new­ly dis­cov­ered site, Whit­ing Slough, near Saska­toon.  All are wel­come!

Abstract: Whit­ing Slough Site: A Unique Site for Research
The Avon­lea Cul­tur­al peri­od was a time of sig­nif­i­cant change on the North­ern Great Plains. Two of these changes include the exclu­sive use of bow and arrow tech­nol­o­gy and the pres­ence of pot­tery. Peo­ple liv­ing dur­ing the Avon­lea peri­od were also known for their large, com­plex bison hunt­ing skills. The Whit­ing Slough site (ElNs-10) pro­vides fur­ther insight into Avon­lea cul­ture. The com­bi­na­tion of unique­ly arranged bone uprights, the odd mix­ing of fau­nal remains, the high num­ber of pro­jec­tile points, and the pres­ence of a black sed­i­ment lay­er has cre­at­ed a site where a fur­ther under­stand­ing of the Avon­lea cul­ture can occur. This pre­sen­ta­tion will cov­er four dif­fer­ent aspects of research on the Whit­ing Slough site. The first will cov­er the results of a geoar­chae­o­log­i­cal analy­sis to deter­mine the for­ma­tion process­es of an unusu­al black sand sed­i­ment. The sec­ond will describe the fau­nal analy­sis that is being com­plet­ed to gain insight into the pro­cure­ment strat­e­gy and pro­cess­ing tech­nique at the site. The third will focus on under­stand­ing the Avon­lea pro­jec­tile points at the site using 2D and 3D shape analy­sis in an attempt to iden­ti­fy and explain the pres­ence or absence of vari­a­tion with­in the assem­blage. Last­ly, the pre­lim­i­nary results of the spa­tial analy­sis of arti­facts will be dis­cussed. Specif­i­cal­ly, how the arti­facts recov­ered relate to each oth­er, to the bone uprights, and to the pit fea­tures with the hope of iden­ti­fy­ing spe­cial­ized activ­i­ty areas.

Paul Thom­son
Paul is cur­rent­ly in his sec­ond year of grad­u­ate school in Archae­ol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan (U of S), under advi­sor Dr. Ernie Walk­er. He com­plet­ed a Bach­e­lor of Arts with Hon­ours in Archae­ol­o­gy at the U of S in 2016 and decid­ed to con­tin­ue pur­su­ing his aca­d­e­m­ic career with a focus in zooar­chae­ol­o­gy. Paul accept­ed the oppor­tu­ni­ty to take on the zooar­chae­o­log­i­cal analy­sis of the Whit­ing Slough site, pre­vi­ous­ly exca­vat­ed by West­ern Her­itage. It is through this project that Paul will be able to fur­ther his knowl­edge of archae­ol­o­gy and fau­nal mate­ri­als.

Cal­lie Diduck
Cal­lie is orig­i­nal­ly from Win­nipeg, Man­i­to­ba where she received a 4 year Bach­e­lor of Sci­ence Degree with a major in Bioan­thro­pol­o­gy from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Win­nipeg. Through­out her aca­d­e­m­ic career she worked as a FSWEP stu­dent, a casu­al con­tract work­er for Parks Cana­da, and as a stu­dent for the Saskatchewan Archae­o­log­i­cal Soci­ety. Her employ­ment expe­ri­ence has con­cen­trat­ed on both field and lab work focus­ing on both pre­his­toric and his­tor­i­cal sites. She is cur­rent­ly com­plet­ing a Master’s degree in Archae­ol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan.

Auro­ra Bow­ery
Auro­ra grew up in south­west­ern Ontario, but com­plet­ed her under­grad­u­ate degree in Archae­ol­o­gy and Geog­ra­phy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Leth­bridge. Dur­ing her time in Leth­bridge she worked at Parks Cana­da as an archae­ol­o­gist and vol­un­teered with the Archae­ol­o­gy Soci­ety of Alber­ta — Leth­bridge Chap­ter. She also spent a year in Eng­land for school where she helped exca­vate part of the Roman fort at Can­ter­bury. She is cur­rent­ly com­plet­ing her Mas­ters of Archae­ol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan.

Bran­don Halyk
Bran­don is cur­rent­ly a 2nd year mas­ters stu­dent at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan. He com­plet­ed his B.A. from the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan in 2016. He has spent parts of 3 field sea­sons exca­vat­ing on both CRM and aca­d­e­m­ic projects in Saskatchewan, Man­i­to­ba, and Ontario. Bran­don is cur­rent­ly work­ing on his Mas­ters degree look­ing at the spa­tial rela­tions at the Whit­ing Slough site.

December Meeting Announcement

Join us on Fri­day, Decem­ber 15th at 7:00 pm in Room 132 of the Archae­ol­o­gy Build­ing on the U of S Cam­pus (55 Cam­pus Dri­ve) for our annu­al Christ­mas meet­ing!  Tasha Hodg­son will be speak­ing on an “Intro­duc­tion to Micro-ana­lyt­i­cal Tech­niques for Lithics: Use-wear and Residue Analy­sis”.  All are wel­come!

Abstract: Intro­duc­tion to Micro-ana­lyt­i­cal Tech­niques for Lithics: Use-wear and Residue Analy­sis
Use-wear and residue analy­sis are exam­ples of micro-ana­lyt­i­cal tech­niques, which focus on the inter­pre­ta­tion of tool func­tion through micro­scop­ic, bio­chem­i­cal, or spec­tro­scop­ic data. Use-wear analy­sis inter­prets micro-dam­ages formed through spe­cif­ic tasks or motions through­out the use-life of an arti­fact, while residue analy­sis involves the inter­pre­ta­tion of amor­phous or invis­i­ble residues pre­served on tool sur­faces or edges. These approach­es are of par­tic­u­lar val­ue for assem­blages which lack organ­ic com­po­nents due to cor­ro­sive bur­ial envi­ron­ments, or for arti­facts which lack con­tex­tu­al infor­ma­tion.

This pre­sen­ta­tion offers an intro­duc­tion to using these tech­niques. Com­mon method­olog­i­cal approach­es of each will be pre­sent­ed, includ­ing detailed descrip­tions of char­ac­ter­is­tic wear pat­terns and micro­scop­ic residue com­po­nents. Results of an analy­sis of Ear­ly Pre-con­tact arti­facts from the North Supe­ri­or region will be dis­cussed to high­light the applic­a­bil­i­ty of these meth­ods to col­lec­tions recov­ered from areas with poor organ­ic preser­va­tion.

Biog­ra­phy: Tasha Hodg­son, MES
Tasha grew up in south­west­ern Man­i­to­ba and com­plet­ed her under­grad­u­ate degree in Anthro­pol­o­gy at Bran­don Uni­ver­si­ty. She lat­er com­plet­ed a Mas­ters of Envi­ron­men­tal Stud­ies at Lake­head Uni­ver­si­ty in Thun­der Bay, Ontario. Over the past nine years, Tasha has worked on sev­er­al archae­o­log­i­cal exca­va­tions, cat­a­logued archae­o­log­i­cal and eth­no­his­tor­i­cal col­lec­tions, par­tic­i­pat­ed in mul­ti­ple pub­lic out­reach and edu­ca­tion pro­grams, and assist­ed in the devel­op­ment of archae­o­log­i­cal data­bas­es in Man­i­to­ba, Ontario, Saskatchewan, and British Colum­bia.

November Meeting Announcement

Join us on Fri­day, Novem­ber 24th at 7:00 pm in Room 132 of the Archae­ol­o­gy Build­ing on the U of S Cam­pus (55 Cam­pus Dri­ve) for our Novem­ber talk! We are lucky to have four speak­ers this month! Mikay­la Coad will present “Sherds are For­ev­er”, Michael Lewis will speak on “0.005 Nau­ti­cal Leagues Under the Sea”, and Kali Siel­sky and Johan­na Robin­son will present on “A Sum­mer at ØHM 1247: Look­ing at a Rur­al Medieval Ceme­tery in Den­mark”. All are wel­come to join us!

Sherds are For­ev­er
I will describe my expe­ri­ence from two sea­sons of exca­va­tion at the site of Tel Beth Shemesh, in the Shep­helah region of cen­tral Israel. I will dis­cuss the back­ground of the site, what has been found, and some of the recent dis­cov­er­ies that have been made dur­ing my time at the site. In addi­tion, I will describe the expe­ri­ence of exca­vat­ing in Israel dur­ing the hot sum­mer months.

0.005 Nau­ti­cal Leagues under the Sea: An Under­wa­ter exca­va­tion on the Nis­sa Ship­wreck, Cyprus
I will describe the expe­ri­ence of an under­wa­ter archae­ol­o­gy field school and project being con­duct­ed simul­ta­ne­ous­ly off a 27 x 8 metre dive boat, logis­ti­cal chal­lenges and issues, and the meth­ods and tech­niques used to when deal­ing with an under­wa­ter exca­va­tion at a depth of 28 metres (0.005 Nau­ti­cal Leagues).

A Sum­mer at ØHM 1247: Look­ing at a Rur­al Medieval Ceme­tery in Den­mark
Believed to be in use from the 12th to 16th cen­tu­ry (medieval peri­od in Den­mark), Hågerup ceme­tery is thought to con­tain an esti­mat­ed two to four thou­sand indi­vid­u­als from the sur­round­ing Hågerup vil­lage and rur­al area. From the exca­va­tions of the first field sea­son at ØHM 1247 the result­ing data con­clud­ed that the ceme­tery was indeed in use for at least the 12th to 14th cen­turies and involved a num­ber of indi­vid­u­als from all dif­fer­ent age, sex, stature, and health cat­e­gories. Poor preser­va­tion, exca­va­tion tech­niques and time played a part in the small sam­ple size from this first sea­son but in years to come this could poten­tial­ly be one of the great­est sam­ples of a rur­al medieval pop­u­la­tion in Den­mark.

Mikay­la Coad is a 4th year under­grad­u­ate Archae­ol­o­gy stu­dent at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan. Her research inter­ests are on Ancient Near East­ern pot­tery of the Bronze and Iron ages and hopes to attend grad­u­ate school focus­ing on these top­ics.

Michael Lewis is a 4th year under­grad­u­ate Archae­ol­o­gy stu­dent at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan. His research inter­ests are in the field of mar­itime archae­ol­o­gy, and include such top­ics as dig­i­tal ship­wreck recon­struc­tion. Besides scu­ba div­ing around the world, He has par­tic­i­pat­ed in both ter­res­tri­al and under­wa­ter archae­o­log­i­cal exca­va­tions and plans to attend grad­u­ate school to spe­cial­ize in the field of Nau­ti­cal Archae­ol­o­gy.

Kali Siel­sky is cur­rent­ly a fourth-year stu­dent in the Depart­ment of Archae­ol­o­gy and Anthro­pol­o­gy at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan. She is pur­su­ing a Bach­e­lor of Arts, Hon­ours degree in Archae­ol­o­gy with a strong inter­est in bioar­chae­ol­o­gy and North­west Coast archae­ol­o­gy. Kali hopes to con­tin­ue her stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan look­ing at bur­ial sites on the West Coast of Cana­da. She enjoys trav­el­ling, and was for­tu­nate enough this sum­mer to trav­el around Europe with her friend Johan­na, doing what they love most, look­ing at bones.

Johan­na Robin­son is cur­rent­ly in her fourth year of stud­ies at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Saskatchewan. She is study­ing archae­ol­o­gy, but is specif­i­cal­ly inter­est­ed in the field of bioar­chae­ol­o­gy. One of her dreams has always been to work in the field of foren­sics. Some of her adven­tures this past year include attend­ing a Bioar­chae­ol­o­gy field school in Den­mark, trav­el­ling to many new places/countries and final­ly, becom­ing a new­ly­wed.