Tuesday, December 18, 2007

I came into this field project feeling pretty confident about my digging. Even though I did not have much experience in the field, my summer field school left me feeling like I knew all I needed to know about digging. Therefore, I expected no surprises from the Cheney house. What I wasn’t so confident about was working in the lab. As far as I was concerned, it was one thing to dig up an artifact and it was another thing to preserve it. While I understood that both processes required a skilled hand, I was not sure that I could work as efficiently in the lab.
To my surprise, it was my work at the Cheney house that gave me a run for my money. Before the Cheney house I had no idea how good a deal I had at the Gage house. Looking back it felt like the soil was so much easier to work with at the Gage house. Of course this made sense since it rained a lot in Syracuse while we were digging. At the Gage house the need to use a shovel or a pick was rare. However, at the Cheney house they became our favored tools as we dug sample test pits or units of rocky/ compacted soil. While sifting at the Gage house could become tedious after a down pour, it seemed easier to sift through mud that it seemed to sift clumps of highly compacted soil. I feel like I grew a little from both experiences.
Digging in different soil types definitely allowed me to see how much more I have to learn about field work. Luckily, this is a task that I am eager to pursue as we close off this semester and get ready for an even better Spring semester.

Isabel Hernandez


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