Tuesday, May 19, 2015

First Day Back

Our full 2015 PCF field school crew (and field-dog-of-the-day)
The summer field school season began to day at Molino, with a full crew, and lots of energy and enthusiasm, only mildly tempered by the claustrophobia-inducing swarms of hungry mosquitoes and early summer heat.  Joined by undergraduate students Kelsey Bruno, Sabrina Cummings, Darby Gorin, and Tyler Huggins, the full crew (pictured above) quickly set to finalizing our first three 1x2 meter excavation units, two positioned at the predicted outer walls of a possible circular 18th-century Apalachee residential structure surrounding a probable central hearth discovered last year, and another along the edge of a buried brick floor also found last year below the terrace in association with the 19th-century sawmill next to the mission site.  Students also got a start at re-excavating a backfilled unit-in-progress along the possible wall of a large structure that might be the long sought-after mission church, and a shovel test was staked in at the bluff base along the edge of the mill as well.

The day began with instruction and training sessions ranging from field note-taking to trowel-sharpening, and flat-shoveling to proper dirt-throwing, and our sights quickly turned to hammering in the final re-bar corner posts for our new units using triangulation in combination with our occasionally finicky total station laser transit.  Sandbags were filled using backfill from last year, and paperwork and bags were begun, and while only one unit actually broke ground by the end of the day, we count today as a successful start to our 2015 field season.  Pictures from today's work follow below.

Darby and Tyler practice sharpening their trowels.

Kayla focuses on balancing the total station prism.

Darby and Kelsey stake in a unit corner; also pictured are Emma, Sabrina, Tyler, and Jen.

Tyler and Kelsey string in a new unit.

Sabrina gets shovel-tossing right; also pictured, Tyler.

Kelsey nails shovel-tossing; Jodi also pictured.

Caroline and Sabrina get paperwork started for their new unit.

Darby puts the first dirt of the season in the screen for Olivia to sift; also pictured, Jen.

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