Friday, July 29, 2005

Kennewick Man

After waiting nine -- count 'em -- years to look at Kenniwick Man, the 9,000 year-old skeleton found on the banks of the Columbia River, an 11 member team of scientists are finally getting a close look... there are more than 350 pieces! But the team is very excited about what they have found so far. "I have looked at thousands of skeltons and this is one of the most intact, most fascinating, most important I have ever seen," said Douglas W. Owsley, a forensic anthropologist from the Smithsonian Institution's National Museum of Natural History. "Its the type of skeleton that comes along once in a lifetime."

Dr. Owsley said the answers to the big questions -- where he fits in the migratory patterns of early Americans, his age a the time of death, what type of culture he belonged to -- will come after future examinations. These bones are very different from what you see in Native American skeletons, continued Dr. Owsley. After their 10 days study of the bones, a report on the results will be released in October. We can hardly wait especially from this comment by another of the scientists, Dr. Berryman who said, "This is like an extraordinary rare book, and we're reading it one page at a time." (Story from the NY Times 7/19/05)

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Iraq Museum International

Have found an absolutely fascinating site called "Iraq Museum International."

There are exhibitions, resources all very up-to-date. There were postings for July 26 -- today! Includes "An Archaeologist's Weblog" by Francis Deblauwe. There are up-dates and thumbnails, including "Italy to Make Virtual Iraq Museum." This site is a treasure; add it, like Nancy's blog "Archaeology Briefs" to your favorite places:

Monday, July 25, 2005

Global Warming... Terrific articles!

In three New Yorker articles Elizabeth Kolbert wrote under the "Annals of Science" -- three excellent pieces which if you have been wondering, questioning and/or need answers -- this is it. "The Climate of Man I" Aril 25,"II" May 2 and "III" May 9. I found it on google using these titles. Or find those New Yorkers in your local library. We had dinner with a man whose son-in-law is an expert and I told him this is how he could catch up and sound reasonable when discussing this scary (yes!) topic. Of course, its not exactly archaeology but its the past and certainly the future.

Sunday, July 24, 2005


Since I first started I've been very neglectful. I want to get in the habit of posting some attention-getting stuff and then those of you who are interested can check in .... follow up with a google search. Recent stuff:

1)After all the fuss and bother about Stonehenge and the tunnels... I even talked about it in my book Stonehenge with Caroline Malone (Oxford University Press 2002): The project that included an ambitious redoing of the highways around Stonehenge and a tunnel has been "shelved." Costs went from L284 million (that's pounds!) to L470 million. Wow.

2)There's a huge Bronze Age barrow cemetery -- dating to about 2000 BCE -- in the Orkneys. First found in 1858 and redug in 2002 with lots more fascinating artifacts... its called Knowes o'Trotty and they are keeping at it.

3)A 6500 year old walkway ha been uncovered in Somerset. Probably a causeway and fish weir installed by Stone Age men sgtruggling to stay alive in an area that was a salt marsh. A first for Britain! Wooden staves that make up the causeway are amazingly well-preserved (probably because they were water-logged).

4)Footprints at Laetoli may be Homo habilis and not Lucy-like A. afarensis. Physical Anthropologists discussed this recently..

5) Dining room goodies from Pompeii -- decorated cups and fine silver platters are being restored and will go on display in 2006 at the National Archaeological Museum of Naples.