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ASHA NEWS



Dr Jennifer Rodrigues

Call for papers: People and the sea: current research on maritime interactions between Southeast Asia and the wider world

Session Chairs:
Dr Jennifer Rodrigues, Western Australian Museum (Jennifer.Rodrigues@museum.wa.gov.au)
Ms Abhirada Pook Komoot, University of Western Australia (abhirada.komoot@research.uwa.edu.au)

The interconnections of two major Oceans—the Indian and Pacific Oceans—have dominated Southeast Asian maritime heritage for thousands of years, enabling movement of, and interaction between, people, ideas and goods. Confirmation of the relationship between Southeast Asia with other regions is evidenced in the dispersal of Austronesian languages, spoken widely in Southeast Asia. Due to the sea providing travel routes to distant regions of the Pacific and Indian Oceans, the expansion of the languages suggests that people from Southeast Asia migrated to both sides—eastward to Oceania and Africa to the west. Furthermore, influences of maritime activities have spread beyond ports and maritime settlements. Research has revealed that mainland Southeast Asia including Myanmar, Thailand, Lao PDR, Cambodia and Vietnam also benefited from nautical skills through their complex riverine networks. Material traces from the hinterland and along coastal rims of both oceans, show that Southeast Asia has long been a dynamic region with an intense mix of cultures in its geographical crossroads. In ancient times, Southeast Asia was the only maritime gateway to China from the west. Research on maritime history in Southeast Asia, therefore, is crucial in defining the foundations of modern economic patterns.

This session welcomes researchers and young scholars from a wide range of fields and disciplines to share their work on Southeast Asia’s maritime past. It aims to gain, and discuss, new insight into the maritime history of the region’s connections with the wider world. Papers may include, but are not limited to, studies in material culture, traditional practices, and awareness-raising programmes through preservation and interpretation of the archaeological resources. Raising public awareness of the importance and potential of our maritime heritage can enrich our understanding of the past, and help forge cooperation and common ground for preserving and appreciating our shared heritage.

IPPA: Indo-Pacific Prehistory Association

Please send presentation abstract proposals (approx. 250 words) to both Session Chairs by end January 2018.



National Trust (Australia)

Registrations are now open for the 2018 Australian Heritage Festival !

The Australian Heritage Festival is Australia’s biggest annual community-driven heritage festival. In April and May 2017, thousands of event organisers and volunteers across Australia managed almost 1,200 events to celebrate our fantastic heritage, history and culture. In 2018 we hope the festival will be even more inclusive and community inspired. We've provided lots of useful information, tips and help to ensure your event is a success.

This year we are focusing on what makes a place special, encouraging us all to embrace the future by sharing the strengths of our cultural identities. The 2018 Australian Heritage Festival theme is My Culture, My Story celebrating the diversity of cultures that have shaped our shared heritage. The Festival is an opportunity to reflect on the places where we live, work, and travel, and why they are special, celebrating our many diverse and distinctive cultures. So we call on communities to treasure their local cultural heritage by telling their stories and celebrating their traditions, including storytelling, music, food, dance, traditional games, and crafts.

What are the cultures of your region, and how are they celebrated? What are the stories of your community? Do you know an untold story that should be shared? What is the role of new generations in celebrating and protecting our heritage?

Please join us and get involved for what will be an amazing celebration.

The Australian Heritage Festival is supported through funding from the Australian Government’s National Trusts Partnership Program.

Note: Some States may have additional event organiser information and requirements.



Compiled by Blog Editor

Recent excavations of the cellar of a Georgian coffeehouse in Cambridge, UK have uncovered many hundreds of artefacts related to the business and it's customers. The works took place ahead of building works by St John’s College, Cambridge. Archaeologist Craig Cessford, from Cambridge University’s archaeology unit stated that “coffeehouses were important social centres during the 18th century, but relatively few assemblages of archaeological evidence have been recovered and this is the first time that we have been able to study one in such depth" through the artefacts recovered, which ranged from tea and servingware to remnants of calves feet used to make jelly for patrons.

For more information, see: www.theguardian.com/science/



Compiled by Alison Frappell and Blog Editor

Recent excavations in Paramatta have revealed the remains of the basement of the historic Wheatsheaf Hotel which was built in 1801, and opened only 12 years after Sydney was settled by Europeans. The excavation also uncovered remnants of a wheelwrights workshop and convict cabin, and a bakery, as well as associated artefacts. The site is being preserved, with the a new high rise development above it altering designs to allow for public access to the site. For more information, see the below links:

https://www.tvnz.co.nz/one-news/world/

https://www.archaeology.org/news/

https://www.9news.com.au/national/

https://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/business/



Alison Frappell

On Friday 1 December 2017 we were pleased to welcome Prof Daniel Schávelzon and Dr Patricia Frazzi to The Big Dig Archaeology Education Centre, following their afternoon tour of The Rocks with Dr Wayne Johnson. We were delighted that the Argentinian Consul-General in Sydney, Mr Hector Raul Pelaez, was also able to join us.


Prof Daniel Schávelzon, Dr Patricia Frazzi and Mr Hector Raul Pelaez

Prof Schávelzon and Dr Frazzi gave our members a fascinating talk about their work on the excavations of a Nazi hideout or refuge complex (image below), deep in the jungle of what is now Teyú Cuaré Park, Misiones, in Argentina. Prof Schávelzon explored the complex of three main buildings and several ancillary buildings, noting how the buildings were constructed by local labour interpreting Germanic designs and construction methods.

Four garbage pits were excavated with thousands of artefacts found, dating the site to the 1940s - 1950s, as well as a collection of coins (image below) from various German-occupied European nations.

An intriguing pit, which initially the team thought may be a grave, showed evidence of burial of an object, a cubic metre in size, which at some later point was retrieved. A belt with a Spanish military buckle (image below) belonging to General Franco’s army, in use till 1975, was deliberately buried when the pit was refilled.

Prof Schávelzon explored how the lack of historical records was ameliorated by a wealth of local stories, including building materials being reused in local housing. However, he noted that some of those local memories turned out to be recollections from newspaper and magazine articles from 1976 when the site was rediscovered, and commented on how recent international media has picked out the storyline it finds most newsworthy. The practice of historical archaeology plays a very important role in better understanding such curious sites.


Dr Frazzi recounted how her team worked in very difficult conditions to conserve significant but extremely fragile artefacts (image above), showing the remarkable transformation of matted lumps of paper into a page of newspaper and a postcard of Hitler and Mussolini. Their careful research on unusual finds, such as a fragment of expensive lamp glass from Germany, was most impressive.

For those who weren’t able to make the talk a copy of the IJHA paper about the excavations is available here: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10761-017-0442-1



Dr Iain Stuart, JCIS Consultants

In 1884 the Crown Lands Act divided New South Wales into three divisions; Eastern, Central and Western. This was not some whimsical classical elusion to the Gallic Wars but the outcome of deliberation on the results of Free Selection since its introduction in 1861. Free selection was established in the various states throughout Australia as a way of establishing a class of “Yeoman farmers” to form a solid buttress against the squatters and to bring land considered underutilised into production.

In New South Wales the legislation introduced in 1861 clarified the tenure of the Squatters, who held most of their land as leasehold and allowed free selection of up to 640 acres before survey. The farm size of 640 acres was deemed as suitable for a small farm.

In 1883, a major review of the working of the Lands Acts in New South Wales, the so-called Morris Rankin report, recognised that it was difficult to apply one size of holding over land that varied in quality, environment and distance to markets, all critical factors in making a farm viable. They proposed the split into three divisions across NSW with varying regulations applying in each division.

The Crown Lands Act (1884) followed the recommendations of the Morris Rankin report although with some amendments and created the three divisions based on the boundaries of the Land Districts created in 1883 under the previous act (Lands Acts Amendment Act, 1875). Selection within the Eastern division still retained the 640 acre upper limit but within the Central division and upper limit of 2560 acres was allowed. Selection was prohibited in the Western Division except that special areas could be created to allow selection if required.

In the research for my Ph D. thesis I could never find a map of the three divisions except for the one used in the Morris Rankin report which was altered by the legislation. In a fit of GIS inspired enthusiasm I recently decided to make one. The first thing I located was a boundary of NSW – these shapefiles are readily available from varying sources, mine was sourced from PSMA (surprisingly they are all identical).

In NSW, Spatial Services portal leads you to a site called Clip n Snip where you can essentially clip a section out of the NSW Digital Topographical Data Base or Digital Cadastral Data Base and download the results in the form of shapefiles. This used to be a paid service but about a year ago it was unexpectedly made free with the result being I spent a fortnight downloading the whole State (you are now limited to 5 downloads per day!) This gave me access to useful things such as shapefiles representing Counties Parishes and Land Districts which are part of the Digital Cadastral Data Base. Note I also added the pre-federation boundaries of the Counties of Cowley and Murray, now partly in the ACT.


Figure 1. The three Divisions of NSW showing elevation and drainage.

Mapping the Western Division was easy as the main boundaries were the State boarder and then along main rivers. These were able to be traced in ArcGIS. There was an odd gap and that needed to be mapped using historical county plans either available from TROVE or from the Historical Land Records Viewer (found on the LPI site). The counties could easily be imported into ArcGIS and georeferenced to the County shapefiles. The location of the division boundaries was marked on County and Parish plans in dashed lines. It was relatively easy to trace these.

The Central Division was easily started by tracing the boundary of the Western Division and then the north and south State boundaries. However the eastern boundary was more difficult to establish. The reason being that it changed as the Land Districts boundaries were changed. This caused some head scratching around the general areas east of Gundagai and Wagga Wagga. To overcome this,  once I realised what had happened, was to use the 1890 Parish maps to map the boundary. These can be downloaded from the Historical Land Records Viewer and georeferenced to the Parish shapefiles and the original boundaries plotted.

The Eastern Division was completed using the Auto trace features of ArcGIS. I might note that it used the County boundaries largely as someone else had digitised them and presumably had decided what was the location of the High Flood Level of the Murray River and the HWM of the coast, both issues when establishing the boundaries of NSW.

I have presented some the maps of the three divisions. The first one (Figure 1, above) uses the 1:250000 map sheet contours and the second one (Figure 2, below) uses a DEM that I found on the Mines website as a digital download and clipped to the state boundary. Both really show the differences in elevation, terrain and to some extent drainage between the three divisions.


Figure 2. The three Divisions of NSW over a the Digital elevation map of NSW

Like all illustrations maps are heuristic devices and as soon as you look at them there are questions. For me the question is one of boundaries – in the south there is an area that looks like it should be in the Western Division. Actually this is roughly centred on Hay. There is another area of the Western Division that looks as if it could fit into the Central division – this is the Cobar area. If you are so inclined you can ask why?

What happened next? The third figure shows this. Using the distribution of grain silos as an analogue for grain growing areas, the location of NSW’s primary grain growing areas can be seen and they all fit more or less neatly into the Central Division and more particularly the elevated areas of the Central division.


Figure 3. The Divisions of NSW and railway and grain silo distribution.

Historically we know that the grain growing areas of NSW moved west, and that this was accompanied by a shift in demand for harder wheats, and that the famous Federation wheat was developed in the late 1890s mainly by William Farrer to fit into the new environment. We can see that being in the Central Division farm sizes potentially could be greater allowing more economies of scale in production. So a suite of changes occurred to allow the development of NSW’s wheat belt.

To return to the original purpose of the project I now have a map of the Land divisions, and I can return to the discussion of the effectiveness or otherwise of the Crown Lands Act (1884) which I began in my Ph. D. thesis.

I am happy to discuss this further or provide the Land Divisions file in gdb or shp format. Contact Iain_Stuart@optusnet.com.au

References

New South Wales. Inquiry into the State of Public Lands Operation of the Land Laws. (1883). Report of Inquiry into the State of the Public Lands and the Operation of the Land Laws / instituted 8th January 1883. (Parliamentary paper (New South Wales. Parliament); 1883). Sydney: Thomas Richards, Government Printer.

Stuart, Iain M 2000, ‘Squatting landscapes in Southeastern Australia (1820-1895)’, Doctor of Philosophy, University of Sydney.

Spatial Data

Note: citing spatial data is a slightly tricky process as there are limited guidelines on how to do it and often the metadata is difficult to convert into a citation.

Geological Survey of NSW 2016, Digital elevation map of NSW, First edition. Scale 1:1 500 000, Projection: Lambert Conical Conformal, Geological Survey of NSW, Maitland.

NSW, Department of Finance Digital Cadastral Data Base, accessed (January 2017)

PSMA Australia 2016, 'Administrative Boundaries', Projection GDA 94, PSMA Australia, Griffith, Canberra



Bronwyn Woff

This month’s Artefact of the Month an interesting looking bulk ink bottle with multiple impressed marks found on its body and base. This bottle was found on a historic excavation in the north of Melbourne’s CBD. It was excavated during works for a multi-story apartment building, from a c1850s+ light industrial site.


The ink bottle is made from stoneware, with a light brown salt glaze, and has an unusual square-shaped finish and spout. It stands 205mm tall, and has a diameter of 90mm. The bottle is well marked, with two makers marks (17 / DOULTON / LAMBETH and 3 / DOULTON / LAMBETH) on the base and on the body near the base respectively, as well as a registration diamond (IV / 28 / 9 Rd V / W) representing 28 March 1876 on the body near the base.

The two Doulton / Lambeth marks on the base and body of the bottle indicate that it was made by Doulton & Co. The company began as a partnership in the early 1800s, and worked from a pottery in Lambeth. From 1854 the company became Doulton and Co, and began using marks similar to those seen on this artefact. The company was granted a Royal Warrant in 1901, and from 1902 began adding ‘Royal’ to their mark, as well as a crown and lion (http://thepotteries.org/allpotters/356.htm).


Registration diamond marks such as these were used to denote that the design of an object, or the design of the decoration (for example, ceramic or textile patterns) were copyrighted to the designer. The diamond itself notes the date that the registration occurred, and therefore marks only a start date for that object. For more information on registration diamonds on ceramics, see A. Brooks An Archaeological Guide to British Ceramics in Australia 1788-1901 2005:74 which was published by The Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology and The La Trobe University Archaeology Program (although out-of-print, the complete book is available as a download for all current ASHA members through the members portal HERE).



The National Trust of Australia (Queensland)

Advocacy Alert – Lutwyche and Corinda The National Trust of Australia (Queensland) has requested a Stop Order, under Division 3, Section 154, of the Queensland Heritage Act, 1992 for two approved development applications at Lutwyche, Brisbane (DA #A004628058 and DA #A004756525). The two Development Applications relate to the property addresses of:

  • 32 LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 33 LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 36 LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 36A LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 37 LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 39 LAURA ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030;
  • 30 THALIA CT CORINDA QLD 4075; and
  • 39 LOWERSON ST LUTWYCHE QLD 4030.

A request has been made for a Stop Order to prohibit work from starting on the stated activity contained in the two Development Applications.

22 December 2017
Letter to the Minister for the Environment and the Great Barrier Reef: Request to make Stop Order under the Queensland Heritage Act, 1992
Attachment A – 15 November 2017 – DEHP Letter of Support
Attachment B – 11 June 2010 – Letter from Office of the Lord Mayor Brisbane

The Threat: Earlier this year, Brisbane City Council approved via Code Assessable Development the proposed 8-storey retirement village on the property adjoining Conon. Conan, built in 1863 and lies to the east of Lutwyche Road. Unfortunately, heritage provisions were not triggered because the QHR listed boundary is not “adjacent” to the development site (under the, it has to be adjacent for the development to impact assessable). The grass lawn court has an adjoining boundary – but because it was owned by someone else when the QHR listing took place, it was not included in the heritage listed boundary.

Because the development was considered code assessable, there was no public notification of the project and the owners of Conon were not informed, nor were any other adjoining neighbours. There was no Statement of Heritage Impact prepared, thus the development was not designed to be sympathetic to Conon.

The development comprises a very large 8-storey retirement facility with most of the bulk and height on the side adjoining Conon. It will be clearly visible from inside the house and from within the grounds. It will tower behind the main elevation of Conon and significant views within the garden will be lost and overshadowed.

Trust Stance: The National Trust of Australia (Queensland) encourages careful development with good design – we showcase the results of this with our annual Heritage Awards. We understand that most developments are balancing a myriad of issues and constraints and we welcome a collaborative approach with developers to assist with refining their designs so that the significance of our heritage is no adversely impacted by development.

We are not opposed to a retirement facility being built on the proposed site. However, we believe that the proposed development should have impact assessable so that the significance of Conon and its setting is retained and not negatively affected.

The National Trust of Australia (Queensland) believes that Brisbane City Council’s method of approving this development via code assessable development and involving no notification or public notification should not have occurred. We recommend that a Stop Order be placed on the proposed development by the Minister for Environment and the Great Barrier Reef so that the following actions can be taken:

  • A thorough and robust Heritage Impact Statement be prepared by a qualified and suitably experienced heritage consultant;
  • Community consultation be undertaken;
  • A re-design of the project occurs, post Impact Statement, which provides an adequate buffer between the development and Conon and which steps the development back from the common boundary, so that the higher levels are further away from the significant setting and view lines.

Trust Action: For the first time in the history of the National Trust of Australia (Queensland), our organisation has requested that the Minister for the Environment and Great Barrier Reef place a Stop Order on the proposed development so that our recommended actions can take place. We have requested the Stop Order via email and presented the letter to eth Minister’s office. We have informed our members via email and Facebook, and alerted the media to our stance.

Development Applications:
DA# A004628058 Laura Street and Lowerson Street, Lutwyche
DA# A004756525 Laura Street, Lutwyche and Thalia Court, Corinda

Media Release: 22 December 2017

What you can do We need your help! Please read our letter to the Minister and then write your own letter to the Minister requesting that they implement our recommendations and issue the Stop Order. Every letter counts – it’s time to activate your voice!

Originally posted on the The National Trust of Australia (Queensland) website: www.nationaltrust.org.au



ASHA Blog Editor

Welcome to 2018 and a new year of the ASHA News blog! We at ASHA hope that you have had a relaxing holiday break and are looking forward to an exciting new year.

Here at the ASHA Blog, we will be continuing to provide our members and other interested parties with information about what is going on in the world of historical archaeology in Australia, New Zealand and the wider Pacific region. This means more posts about research, excavations, upcoming events and Artefacts of the Month!

You can sign up to the RSS feed, found on the left side of the blog, in order to receive an email update each time a new blog post hits the site. And remember: as part of the ASHA membership, you also receive a quarterly blog summary email, so sign up as a member HERE.

We are very proud to say that over the last year the blog has gained many viewers. Previous to the revamp in January 2017 the blog averaged 175 views per month. By the second half of 2017 the ASHA News blog  was averaging of 1,200 views per month! This year we are looking to recieve more submissions from historical archaeologists all over Australasia, so if you'd like some free exposure for your excavation or research, if you've got an upcoming event you'd like to advertise, or if you simply want to show off that wonderfully interesting artefact you've excavated please send an email to blog@asha.org.au or to your local regional representitive (whose email addresses can be found HERE).

We're excited to see what happens in Australasian Historical Archaeology in 2018, thanks for joining us!



Compiled by Richard Morrison

In October 2017, the Australian Government noted the discovery of the wreck of SS Macumba, sunk during the Second World War by Japanese air attack in the Arafura Sea north-east of Darwin. The wreckage has now been protected as a declared shipwreck under Australia’s Historic Shipwrecks Act. The merchant ship SS Macumba left Sydney, carrying supplies for Darwin. It never arrived, with two Japanese floatplanes bombing the vessel on 6 August 1943, resulting in the loss of three lives. See http://www.environment.gov.au/minister/frydenberg/media-releases/mr20171005.html