My group and I had been working on exposing a brick kiln for a week before we finally completed it. It was a special project Dr. Pacheco, “Paco”, had chosen to do as a favor to Don, the landowner of our site. The brick kiln that we were excavating actually made the bricks that were used to build Don’s home and he was very excited to also see the project come to a close.
At the closure of our unit, which was now large enough that most of us can sit in it; we were moved over to a new unit that Don claimed to always find bladelets, flakes and flint in large amounts.
That very day we went through the 20 centimeters and uncovered a large amount of flakes and flint pieces. While that was exciting the following day proved to be much more worthwhile.
As my group and I dug our unit the next day we were constantly stopping and running for cover as scattered storms started and ended periodically throughout the day. By noon my group and I covered as much ground as possible completing the goal of 40 centimeters.
While we were cleaning the walls that caved in the deeper we went into the ground it just so happened that a pretty cool find would soon pop out. The minute the trowel scraped against the walls of our unit, a beautiful, pretty intact spear point fell right out.
What was cool about it was how great of a condition it was in. Our group who had been used to seeing mostly brick for the past week jumped up and down screaming from delight.
As we were furthest from most of the group (we nicknamed our unit The Sahara for the lack of people and large amount of heat) no one knew why we were jumping around. The sun really does do crazy things to the mind.
I screamed out towards Doc and Paco who were pretty far away but walked over expecting to see just a small blade or arrowhead. When they saw the find they too seemed impressed by its condition.
It turned out that the spear point was a middle woodland Hopewell Snyder point, and it was the best one in Don’s collection thus far. That day really made it all worthwhile. Sometimes when you find yourselves digging for hours and having nothing to show for it, it can be discouraging.
However I cannot even begin to describe the feeling that one has when they finally do find something as beautiful as a spear point. To know that what you are holding in your hands was once used for the survival of a native tribe is pretty exciting…not the mention that it was almost 2,000 years old!
— Jasmin Velez, is a senior anthropology major.
DeeAnne Wymer, professor of anthropology, and a group of Bloomsburg University students hit the road each spring in mid-May to spend four weeks in southern Ohio digging at a Hopewell habitation site. The archeological field school experience enables student teams to rely on new imaging technologies to uncover another living site of the Mound Builders from 2,000 years ago.