Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Field Trip: Gault Archaeological

We took a field trip today to the Gaunt site, where excavations are ongoing. This area has a long history of pay-for-digging, where the former land owners would allow people to pay up to $20 a spot to dig all day-- and keeping what they find. Fortunately, these "miners" didn't dig too deep and the real TREASURES were found under their mess, along with a ton of empty beer cans. Not to mention many valuable artifacts found in their piles of discarded rubble. Drinking and digging in hot Texas can only endure for so long.

Fortunately for archeology, the property changed hands and the new owners recognized the scientific importance of the site. For the last 10 years, a major excavation has been undertaken under the supervision of archaeologist, Clark -- who happened to be our tour guide today. He was awesome.

What a wealth of information!
For anyone living in the area and interested, this site has garnered national attention for some of its finds. Not only is this excavation unearthing Clovis artifacts, but also human, animal, and some unusual stones.

Volunteers are welcome and trained. Clark gave me his business card and I'm keeping this in mind.

We had a long discussion about his career choice and I mentioned that I used to dream (as a young girl) of going to Harvard and being an archaeologist. He chuckled and said Harvard archaeologists who visited their site were some of the worst.

I had to stop and think for a moment. WHY did I want to go to Harvard? Then I remembered that Howard Carter had attended Harvard. He was the archaeologist who had discovered King Tutankhamun's tomb.

Speaking of King Tut...

Well, that's another story.

I'll explain it in the next blog post...

Black walnut in abundance... Oh how I missed these trees in Missouri! And Hickory nuts!

Everything gets carried to the screens, washed and water blasted.
I don't know what's worse... falling on a cactus, or this menacing thorned flower...
The screening area.

One of the excavation sites.
This old shack used to be part of a train...
Archaeologists visiting from England. Notice anything different about them? Upon arriving in Texas, they all bought cowboy hats!

The domed tents cover excavation sites...

Who can resist stopping at an old mom and pop's grocery store for an ice cold soda pop?

This is what it's all about!


Patty said...

What fun! Did you stay all day?

Anonymous said...

LOL the first thing I did notice on all those people were the hats but I thought it was local people wearing them to keep the hot sun off their heads.
Your blog was very interesting..

Daisy said...

My daughter is researching King Tut for a project due next week! We were online trying to find information about him last night.

You go to the neatest places!

The WoodLand School said...

I *must* visit this place!!! Thanks for the inspiration : )