Richard Brassey, Auckland Council

A World War II aircraft crash site at Whenuapai west of Auckland was investigated in April-May by a team lead by Simon Bickler in conjunction with Auckland Council. A USAAF B17E flying fortress (‘Texas Tornado’) which had been on a secret mission to New Zealand crashed and exploded shortly after take-off for Laverton on 9 June 1942, with eleven fatalities. The property on which the crash occurred is likely to be developed in the near future. The aim of the project was to undertake a controlled excavation of a large infilled 500 lb bomb crater at the site in a way that would allow recovery of any human remains, personal items, unexploded ordnance and definitive crash relics. The finds recovered from the crash site have yet to be fully examined, but a number of items recovered will be repatriated to the US Defence Department’s Missing in Action unit.

Photo: Bomb crater prior to excavation - Richard Brassey


The AACAI NSW/ACT Chapter invites you to a wine and cheese chat on 'Digital Archaeology'. The speakers will be Dr James Flexner and Diana Cowie. The event will be held on Thursday 9th June, 6:00pm at the Big Dig Centre, in The Rocks YHA, Sydney. The event is free for AACAI Members, $10 for Non-members and Students

Bronwyn Woff, ASHA Blog Editor

The presentation for the Sydney Historical Archaeology Practitioner’s Workshop covered the change ASHA has recently enacted from having a quarterly newsletter to an online news blog and quarterly blog summary. This occurred between December and April 2017. The blog can be found at .

In the past, ASHA’s newsletter was sent out to members quarterly, the last edition of which was sent out to members in January 2017. The ASHA news blog was launched on the 1st of January 2017 and aims to share current news and information with members so that they are up to date with the goings on of historical archaeology in Australasia. The news blog includes articles on research and excavation, news about upcoming events and an artefact of the month article, the content of which is supplied by our members and discovered through the various avenues of the internet.

Why a blog?
According to the Pennsylvania State University, a blog is “a simple platform to share information to an audience on a timely basis around a single or multiple topics”.

    The positives include:
  • Information is released more regularly
  • More recent information (newsletters can quickly contain out-of-date material, especially with a long lag time between editions)
  • Easier to access on mobile devices
  • Provide smaller chunks of information - easier and quicker for readers to process
  • less time consuming to edit and manipulate than an e-newsletter and therefore more information can be distributed
  • More visitors to the site - search engines are more likely to suggest a regularly updated site
    The negatives we have encountered include:
  • Lack of understanding about using a blog
  • Currently, no automatic updates each time something is posted (we’re working on this)
  • For the editor, needing to learn a little about coding, and the blog posting system
    How to find the blog:
  • Go to
  • Go to the ASHA home page ( and on the menu at the top of the page, click on the “News” button
  • Go to the ASHA home page ( and scroll down to “Latest News”
  • On the mobile site, click on Menu on the top right, then from the menu, select “News”
  • Click any of the links when you receive a members only News Blog Summary email

The News Blog:
On the first news blog page the past 10 posts will load, and older posts can be viewed using the page number menu at the bottom of the page. Click “Read Post” to view the whole article that you are interested in. To the left of the page at the top, there is a link to each of the past 10 blog posts under “Recent Posts”. Below this there is a “Topics” menu, which can be used to filter the blog for one topic at a time, as listed. These include the region related to the post, the type of post (eg: upcoming events), and broad topics.

Quarterly Blog Summary:
As a members-only benefit, a summary of the blog posts from the previous quarter is sent out by email. So far, only one summary has been sent out, which was for early April, with the next ones set for early July, October and then January 2018. The blog summary email is in replacement of the newsletter, and outlines the titles of all the posts from the previous quarter. Members can then click the links for the posts that interest them and read the full articles on the blog.

The ASHA news blog has taken over a page which was previously reserved for news updates, which were posted every couple of months. This page previously had an average of approximately 175 views per month. Now that the blog is posting approximately every 2 to 3 days, we are receiving an increasing number of views per month. In April we hit a total of 908 views.

We would love to hear more about what you are all doing in the field, and in your research! So if you have some research or excavation news you would like to share, an interesting artefact you could write about, or an upcoming event that you would like to share with a wider audience please send a submission through to either your regional representative (found HERE) or to . We also accept other historical archaeology related articles that don’t fit into these categories.

Thank you for your ongoing support of the ASHA News Blog.

Compiled by Richard Morrison

A call for comment by COB 14 July 2017 on the proposed National Heritage listing of the Queen Victoria Markets in Melbourne has been made by the Australian Heritage Council. The Council’s initial assessment is that the Markets might have National Heritage values. A draft map and description of potential National Heritage values are available at:

Compiled by Richard Morrison and Bronwyn Woff

Cornish mining sites at Burra and Moonta have recently been added to the National Heritage List. These important historic copper mining sites, representing the start of Australia’s metal mining industry, were added on 9 May 2017. Expert Cornish labour familiar with the recovery of copper ore was imported in the mid-19th century to establish the industry. The mines represent the earliest examples of Cornish mining and domestic architecture in Australia.

For more information, please see the following links:

ERRATUM 11-06-2017: The image previously attached to this article showed the Burra Brewery. The image now attached shows the Burra Mine.

Image of Burra Mine, showing Cornish style buildings. Supplied by Meredith Satchell, President of the Burra History Group, Inc

EIANZ Committee

EIANZ's 2017 Annual Conference will be held on Monday 30 and Tuesday 31 October 2017 in Wellington, New Zealand with a welcome function on 29 October and field trips scheduled for 1 November. The theme for the 2017 conference is Tu Kaha: Stand Tall, Fronting up with wicked solutions.

Our environmental work is increasingly confronted by wicked problems: those that seem difficult or impossible to solve because of incomplete data; complex and contradictory factors; and the risk of unforeseen consequences.

This conference will focus on wicked solutions/: those solutions that are innovative, collaborative, and multi-disciplinary; that take approaches that can be shared across disciplines; and use tools and techniques that apply in many different environments.

It is time to stand tall, stand together and front up with wicked solutions to ensure that we, as environmental professionals, are leading by example and doing our part to achieve excellence in environmental practice.

Call for papers

The call for papers is open. Submit an abstract by Friday 26 May 2017 at the following link:

Fenella Atkinson

AACAI is pleased to announce the recipients of the 2017 Student Support Fund:

  • Lauren Churchill (University of Sydney) Foodways in regional New South Wales in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries: A study of butchery patterns
  • Rodina Goranitis (University of Queensland) Doing it right: Best practice standards in cultural heritage management
  • Rebekah Hawkins (University of Sydney) Exploring the relationship between raw material and morphology in a lithic assemblage from Lake George NSW: A close look at backed artefacts and core production and their connection to raw material
  • Jacinta Koolmatrie (Flinders University) Adnyamathanha Yura Malka
  • Liam Norris (Australian National University) The Aboriginal history of Ulladulla

On completion, summaries of the projects will be published in the AACAI E-News, and papers in the AACAI Journal.

We would like to acknowledge the generous support of the sponsors of the 2017 Fund:

  • Archae-aus
  • Comber Consultants
  • Everick Heritage Consultants
  • Extent Heritage
  • North Qld Cultural Heritage
  • Ochre Imprints
  • Wallis Heritage Consulting

Thank you very much to all the applicants, and best wishes with your studies.

GML Heritage

At the recent NSW National Trust Heritage awards, GML Heritage won the award for Interpretation for their Hill End Historic Site project.

Hill End Historic Site is a former gold mining town in the central west of New South Wales. The National Parks and Wildlife Service commissioned GML, with Trigger and Simon MacArthur Associates to prepare an interpretation plan to increase visitor ‘access’ to the stories, sensory qualities and character of the site.

The interpretation plan focused on revitalisation and reimagining the presentation of Hill End. It not only defined themes and heritage values, but also addressed the wider business revitalisation of the site in a holistic way, identifying revenue generation, combined with visitor and marketing opportunities to assist conservation of the place and its collections.

Innovative tourism opportunities were identified with the aim of strengthening and diversifying the visitor experience, increasing sustainability and supporting local businesses and new social entrepreneurs. The project team generated a range of engaging options and interpretive programs to address the different needs and interests of visitors. A key aim was to create an authentic visitor experience that fostered creative enterprise to engage with artisans, crafts people and other businesses that aligned with the character and identity of Hill End.

Clarifying the site’s carrying capacity and identifying ways to improve on-site visitor management, GML also market-tested interpretive initiatives and prepared costings to ensure value for money, reduce risk and maximise successful implementation.

For more information, please see the following links:

Bronwyn Woff

The ASHA blog, which replaced the ASHA quarterly newsletter in January 2017, has now been up and running for three months. The blog Editor and ASHA Committee are interested to see who is visiting the blog, how they are using it, and what they would like to see on the blog. To this end, the Editor and Committee have decided to send out a survey in order to ascertain this information.

This survey data will inform the Editor and Committee of how the blog is used and how it can improve. The anonymous information may also be collated and used in a presentation about the ASHA blog at the Sydney Historical Archaeologists Practitioners workshop in May 2017.

The survey can be completed in less than five minutes. If you would like to take part in the survey, please follow this link:

As Blog Editor, I would like to thank you for your continued support of the ASHA blog.

Bronwyn Woff
National Archaeology Week Committee

National Archaeology Week aims to increase public awareness of Australian archaeology and the work of Australian archaeologists at home and abroad. It also promotes the importance of protecting Australia's unique archaeological heritage.

A nationwide program of events and exhibitions is held in May each year, including public talks, walking tours and displays.

Please see the following pages for more information: