While other Rutgers-Camden students enjoyed Spring Break somewhere on a sunny beach, the students of Whispering Woods were hard at work.  Even though participation was purely optional, several of our students put in a full week of digging to help us catch up on our Phase II shovel tests.

Branch of Old Man's creek.  Site 1 can be seen across the gorge.
Branch of Old Man’s creek. Site 1 can be seen across the gorge.

This week we ventured fully into the woods for a little reconnaissance of sites 6, 8, 1, & 2.  During the Fall semester, these areas were fairly inaccessible due to the brush and undergrowth in this densely wooden part of the site.  Now that the vegetation has died back from the winter, we were able to survey the landscape.  And what lovely landscape it is!  A deep gorge bisects the property with sites 6 and 8 on one side, and site 1 and 2 on the other.

Another neat find was at least 4 flags from the Phase I excavation.  When plotted on our site map it confirms that we had been laying in our STP lines exactly where they need to be.  Whew!

Our final find of the week was a surface fine of a medium-sized lump of flint.  Why was this significant?  Flint is not native to this area but is a key raw material for prehistoric projectile points.  However, it is clear that quite a bit of heavy machinery has been back in the woods in the past year clearing trees.  So while we marked the spot where we found the flint, it could have been moved there.

Other exciting news to report:  Student Arthur Murphy has landed a job as an Administrative Assistant at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania.  Art will be helping with the logistical details for an NEH teacher workshop the society is hosting in the summer working with partner organizations like the National Constitution Center.

Instructor Alex Denning has accepted a job as Museum Collections Technician at the Warren Anatomical Museum at the Countway Medical Library at Harvard University. There, Alex will be working on preservation and conservation of their wet specimen collections, along with research into some of the collection specimens Harvard University.  Congratulations to them both!

Next week normal class resumes!