Minnesota Archaeology Month

This year the Minnesota Office of the State Archaeologist (OSA) has decided to expand Minnesota Archaeology Week to Minnesota Archaeology Month.   In an effort to allow event hosts more latitude in scheduling events to just a single week it was decided to expand the celebration to a month long event, hopefully encouraging more participation.  The first Minnesota Archaeology Month will be September, 2017.  If you have an archaeology related event happening during September that you would like to OSA to help publicize contact the OSA through their web site at https://mn.gov/admin/archaeologist/  or bruce.koenen@state.mn.us

Cultural Resources Law Conference

Since this is local I thought some of the regional professional archaeologists and project managers might be interested.  In October of 2017 there will be a cultural resources law conference on Consulting with Tribes on Energy Projects.  This is an opportunity for professionals to learn more about current practices in Tribal Consultation.  It will be held at the Mystic Lake Casino Hotel in Prior Lake, Minnesota.  Follow this link for the conference web site http://www.cvent.com/events/cultural-resources-law-conference/event-summary-5272d4e4fcd44646af76ecda564528cc.aspx?RefID=from%20www.cle.com or download the brochure here  http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/07/Cultural-Resource-Law-2017.pdf

Arrowheads and Stone Tools

The annual flintknapping event at the Northwest Company Fur Post at Pine City will be held Friday, June 23 from noon to 4 pm and Saturday June 24 from 10 am to 3 pm. Modern flintknappers will demonstrate their skill at shaping stone into arrowheads and other stone tools. This annual event allows flintknappers, archaeologists, and the interested public a chance to see and discuss how stone tools are made.  There is an admission charge to the site, but no additional cost for the event. For additional information check out this link: http://www.mnhs.org/event/719

Minnesota Archeologist, Volume 74

The latest issue of the Minnesota Archeologist (Volume 74) has been published. Articles include the third installment of the history of Minnesota archaeology by Guy Gibbon and Scott Anfinson focusing on the period of the 1970s to 2015 looking at cultural resource management archaeology. David Maki, Sigrid Arnott and Michael Bergervoet examine the relationship between burial mound locations and the geophysical evidence for lightning strikes. Jack Steinbring presents some optically stimulated luminescence dates from the Hensler Petroglyph site in east-central Wisconsin suggesting that some of the glyphs date to before 10,000 BP. A multi-component Woodland site in southeastern Minnesota excavated in 1997 by the MnDNR Division of Trails and Waterways, 21HU0167, is reported on by Timothy Tumberg. Dan Wendt and Mark Doperalski assess the limits of raw material analysis and identification by archaeologists in Minnesota, discussing how they are doing and means of improvement. Kent Bakken documents a biface cache from Todd County, Minnesota consisting of 12 minimally worked bifaces made of non-local materials, specifically Mayes Creek Chert and Burlington Chert. Plant microfossils (starch granules and phytoliths) were examined by Alexandra Burchill and Mathew Boyd to provide a better understanding of the plant foods utilized by the Initial Woodland inhabitants of northern Minnesota. Mathew Mattson discusses using traditionally available tools and methods to work raw copper obtained from glacial drift to produce copper tools consistent with archaeologically recovered specimens. David Mather continues his series on Minnesota archaeological sites recently listed on the National Register of Historic Places including two American Indian earthwork sites, an historic stagecoach road and associated archaeological sites, and a multicomponent habitation/mound site in a national forest. The issue concludes with an article in memory of Herb Wright and his contributions to archaeology authored by Scott Anfinson.

Follow this link to see the table of contents http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/05/Volume-74.pdf . If you would like to order a copy contact the Minnesota Archaeological Society. You can email Kent Bakken at bakk0029@umn.edu or Anna Morrow at anmorrow@q.com . They can also be reached by mail at The Minnesota Archaeological Society, Fort Snelling History Center, 200 Tower Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55111.

Gopher State Artifact Show

The 2017 Gopher State artifact show will be held this coming Saturday March 25 from 9am to 3pm at the Steele County History Center, Owatonna, Minnesota, located at 1448 Austin Road, on the southeast corner of the Steele County Fair Grounds.  This year the Science Museum of MN will be at the show to promote the archaeological survey of Dakota County, so any one with artifacts from Dakota County is encouraged to bring them to the show.  The event is open to the public and offers an opportunity to see the regions private artifact collections.


Recent Losses

The archaeological community was saddened by the recent passing of two long time Minnesota archaeologists.  Doug Birk whose work focused on the European Colonial period in Minnesota and western Wisconsin.  Doug was an expert on the fur trade and early European exploration.   And Steven Mulholland who focused on northern Minnesota archaeology.  Steve’s expertise was in lithic analysis and toolstone identification, particularly in northeastern Minnesota.  Steve was also a recent past president of the Council for Minnesota Archaeology.  A copy of Doug’s obituary can be found here: http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Birk-obituary-web.pdf   A copy of Steve’s obituary here:  http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/Stephen-Obiturary-web.pdf  

Our condolences to their families.

2017 Lake Superior Basin Conference

The annual Lake Superior Basin Workshop will be held March 17 and 18, 2017 in the Heritage Center at Grand Portage National Monument (https://www.nps.gov/grpo/index.htm ).  The address is 170 Mile Creek Road, Grand Portage, Minnesota.  The event will run from 9 am to 5 pm both Friday (17) and Saturday (18).  The core of the Workshop is one-on-one or small group discussions on artifacts, sites and other archeological topics.  A congenial atmosphere to share information and ask questions.  The event is free and open to the public. Download the event flyer here:  http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/03/2017-Sup-workshop.pdf

CMA 2017 Conference Program

The Council for Minnesota Archeology Conference program has been released.  The Conference is being held later this week, February 24 and February 25, 2017 at Anderson Center, on Hamline University. 

Follow this link for a copy of the schedule. http://mnfieldnotes.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/2017-CMA-Conference-program-web.pdf

Pope County Survey

The Oversight Board of the Statewide Historical and Archaeological Survey and the Minnesota Historical Society have released a request for proposals for an archaeological survey of Pope County, Minnesota.  The purposes of the survey are to summarize what is known about the early human occupation of the county, update the State Archaeologist’s site file with regard to the status of known archaeological sites and find through field survey unrecorded prehistoric and early historic sites.  The cost of the survey should not exceed $95,000.  For more information follow this link to the State Register and see page number 960:  http://mn.gov/admin/assets/SR41_32%20-%20Accessible_tcm36-277012.pdf