2012 Public Archaeology Field School

Archaeologist Dr. Doug Wilson teaches Public Archaeology Field School students
National Park Service Archaeologist Dr. Doug Wilson teaches Public Archaeology Field School students in the Village


Exploring the Northwest's Colonial Fort Vancouver:

The Public Archaeological Field School at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site

Tuesday - Saturday, June 19 - August 4, 2012

Portland State University, Washington State University Vancouver, and the National Park Service are pleased to announce a field school in historical archaeology at Fort Vancouver National Historic Site and Lewis and Clark National Park. The program will introduce the methods and theories of fieldwork in historical archaeology. Students will participate in all aspects of field and laboratory work: laying out units, excavation by shovel and trowel, mapping, drawing, photography, and cleaning, identifying, and analyzing artifacts. The season includes lectures by guest speakers and staff. The National Park Service and its partners are committed to sharing cultural resources and preservation values with the public. On a rotating basis, students will discuss the field school activities with visitors, including interpreting the significance of the site and the educational purposes of the project.

Fort Vancouver National Historic Site is an unparalleled archaeological laboratory, comprising the remains of Fort Vancouver, the ca. 1825-1860 regional headquarters and supply depot for the Hudson's Bay Company, and Vancouver Barracks, the first (ca. 1849-2010) permanent U.S. Army post in the Pacific Northwest.

This year's field school will continue explorations in Fort Vancouver's multicultural Village (also known as "Kanaka Village"). This colonial village was the largest settlement in the Pacific Northwest in the 1830s and 1840s. It contained people from around the world and the Pacific Northwest, including Native Hawaiians, Scots, French Canadians, African Americans, the Metis, and people of many different American Indian tribes. The field school will provide a means to recapture the early history of Colonial Fort Vancouver, a place of multiculturalism in the Pacific Northwest, while engaging the modern Portland/Vancouver area in the unique history of their closes National Park site.

For one week during the latter portion of the course, the school will move to Lewis and Clark National Park to conduct test excavations at Fort Astoria/Fort George, a National Historic Landmark Property related to the terrestrial Fur Trade and the history of the War of 1812 in the West.

Learn more about the 2012 Speaker Series presented in conjunction with the Public Archaeology Field School here!

Follow the field school's progress at the 2012 Public Archaeology Field School Blog here!

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