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ASHA NEWS



Caitlin Allen

The first Sydney ASHA reading group session was held in August and hosted by GML. ASHA members from a range of backgrounds including museums, archaeological consultancy and academia discussed a number of articles about archaeological interpretation. This theme was chosen as a lead in to the joint ASHA and Interpretation Australia conference in Tasmania, held in October.

The readings by Francis McManamon, Kenneth Lewis, Tracy Ireland and the NSW Heritage Council encompassed a broad range of approaches to and opinions about archaeological interpretation. Inspired by the readings, the discussion freewheeled through a range of issues including:

  • interpretation is an important way of delivering “public benefit” from archaeological projects. It was noted that this benefit is not well defined or understood.
  • physical evidence (artefacts and in situ remains) as the anchor for the interpretation;
  • interpretation on site during excavation versus interpretation afterwards;
  • whether interpretation without physical evidence (ie: based on signage; leaflets; technology etc.) can work;
  • the limitations of archaeology presented behind glass with a preference for archaeological interpretation to be tactile, experiential and accessible;
  • the checkbox mentality and its impact on quality outcomes;
  • whether interpretation can be a mitigation measure for archaeological site destruction;
  • challenging the idea that there is a correct way to interpret archaeological sites and the popular archaeological interpretations, which may take license with the historic “facts” are to be avoided;
  • developers using archaeological interpretation as a branding exercise;
  • the perception that interpretation is undertaken by experts to educate the general public, rather than by communities themselves (an attitude evident in the NSW Heritage Council Interpretation guidelines).

A number of examples of archaeological interpretation at Parramatta were highlighted in the discussion and so a walking tour of these sites was arranged a few weeks later. A number of ASHA members who hadn't come to the reading group joined us for the walking tour, which included: Parramatta Justice Precinct, where in situ remains and artefact displays are contained in an outdoor courtyard area and there are significant environmental issues that impact the visibility of the remains; sites in Smith Street which include interpretive signage, an artwork made using objects from the excavation and coloured street paving to represent former building footprints; and the very newly opened convict hut site at V By Crown in Macquarie Street, where a large area of in situ remains is visible underneath a new luxury apartment building, along with artefacts, signage and a video presentation of the excavation, conservation and interpretation of the site.


A convict hut site at V By Crown in Macquarie Street, where a large area of in situ remains is visible underneath a new luxury apartment building, along with artefacts, signage and a video presentation of the excavation, conservation and interpretation of the site. (Source: Caitlin Allen)

The next Sydney ASHA reading group event will be held on the 30th November on the topic of industrial archaeology and heritage. Please RSVP to secretary@asha.org.au if you would like to attend or require further details.



Rebekah Hawkins, Rhian Jones and Jane Rooke (Casey and Lowe)

It’s A Riot! - Celebrating strong women and their stories

On Friday 27 October Casey and Lowe were invited to join the Parramatta Female Factory Friends (PFFF) in their annual celebration of ‘It’s a Riot’ Day. It was a great honour to join in these celebrations and help tell just some of the stories marking 199 years (next year will be a big one) since the Factory was built.



Display table at ‘It’s a Riot’ day.

The Parramatta Female Factory was the first purpose built Factory in the colony, established as a place of assignment and of secondary punishment as well as a marriage bureau. It also included a hospital which was open to the women of the Factory and free settler women. In 1818 Governor Macquarie laid the first foundation stone, and three years later 112 convict women were transferred to the Factory. The number of women residing at the Factory increased dramatically throughout the 1830s and 1840s due to the large number of women transported from England and Ireland. By 1827 overcrowding, dissatisfaction with rations and declining living conditions led to possibly the first female workers’ riot in Australia. This riot was one of five that are known to have occurred at the factory, with many more occurring across the site during its time as an Asylum and Girl’s Reformatory. The Factory closed in 1848 and the site was converted into the Parramatta Lunatic Asylum.



Helen Ross FEIANZ, AJEM Editor

A major part of Australian and New Zealand identity is made up of our spirit and ingenuity, our heritage places, and our unique living landscapes. Heritage is a legacy from our past, a living, integral part of life today, and the stories and places we pass on to future generations.

The EIANZ has recently established a Heritage Special Interest Section. Its aim is to develop and promote knowledge about heritage as an essential element of the environment as well as to improve professional practice and recognition of heritage practitioners.

To further these aims, we are seeking to compile the first heritage special issue of the EIANZ journal, the Australasian Journal of Environmental Management (AJEM). The focus of the AJEM is on policy and practice, and we welcome submissions of abstracts on any aspect of these themes. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to:
* Is policy and practice in Australia and New Zealand effectively protecting heritage?
* Are our heritage practices adequate to interpret and conserve the past, to help us understand our environment, and to pass that legacy on to the future?
* Engagement of stakeholders in heritage
* Case studies of successful collaborative projects where heritage has been integrated with other environmental practice
* How would effective policy for Intangible heritage and heritage landscapes look?
* Multiple uses for heritage
* What is heritage anyway?

Submission Process:
Papers will be reviewed following the AJEM double‐blind review process. Expressions of interest to publish, along with an abstract, should be submitted to the guest editors, Richard Sharp FEIANZ CEnvP and Vanessa Hardy MEIANZ M.ICOMOS by 20 February 2018. Following acceptance of the EOI and abstract, full papers should be submitted by 30 August 2018 by online submission to the Australasian Journal of Environmental Management Scholar One Manuscripts. Papers should be prepared using the AJEM Guidelines. The guest editors welcome informal enquiries related to the proposed topics.



AACAI Victorian Chapter

The Victorian Chapter of the Australian Association of Consulting Archaeologists Inc. invites you to celebrate the end of year with us. Join us for canapés and drinks at Hotel Spencer Bar & Grill at 475 Spencer Street, Melbourne on Friday 1 December, 6:30pm start. RSVP details to come.



Alison Frappell

The Australian Society for Historical Archaeology welcomes to Sydney Dr. Daniel Schávelzon (Director, Centre for Urban Archaeology, Argentina) and Dr. Patricia Frazzi (Specialist in the Conservation and Restoration of Archaeological Heritage) who have kindly agreed to meet with ASHA members on the evening of Friday 1st December 2017. ASHA extends a warm welcome to members of ICOMOS and the Nicholson Museum who would like join in.

Daniel and Patricia will give a presentation about their work discovering, preserving and sharing the Historical Archaeology of Buenos Aires and Argentina, including the evocative excavations of a probable Nazi Hideout in the remote jungle within Teyú Cuaré Park, Misiones, on the border with Paraguay, which recently attracted international media attention.

When: Friday 1 December 2017, doors open 5.30pm for a 6.00pm start
Where: The Big Dig Archaeology Education Centre, Sydney Harbour YHA, 110 Cumberland Street, The Rocks
RSVP: This event is free, however seating is limited and we need to confirm numbers for catering. Please RSVP to secretary@asha.org.au

For more information about the two presenters, please see: http://abcnews.go.com/International/believed-nazi-hideout-argentina-discovered-archaeologists/story?id=29838180



Caiti D'Gluyas

The next ASHA reading group is being hosted by Artefact Heritage and will be held on Thursday 30th November at 6.00pm. This is a semi-regular (quarterly) opportunity to catch-up with other historical archaeologists and discuss themes of interest.

Facilitator: Adele ZubrzyckaSenior Heritage Consultant, Artefact Heritage
Topic: Industrial Archaeology and Heritage
Time and Location:
6pm, Thursday 30th November 2017
Artefact Heritage Offices (Level 4 Building B, 35 Saunders Street, Pyrmont)
There will be an Artefact Heritage Representative at the ground floor to allow you access to Level 4.

Primary Readings
Is Industrial Heritage greater than or equal to the Heritage of the Industrial Revolution? – Iain Stuart
Transplanted technologies and rural relics: Australian Industrial Archaeology and questions that matter – Eleanor Conlin Casella

Secondary Readings
Industrial Archaeology, from Industrial Heritage Re-tooled – Patrick Martin Process Recording at Industrial Sites – Brian Malaws
Engineering and Industrial Heritage – NSW OEH
Approaches to Industrial Archaeology in Australia, from Industrial Archaeology in Australia, Rural Industry – Judy Birmingham, Ian Jack and Dennis Jean

The event is free and open to anyone who is interested, however, RSVPs are essential (to secretary@asha.org.au). Please also get in touch if you are having difficulties sourcing the papers.



The Council of the Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation

The Inaugural Memorial Lecture in Honour of Emeritus Professor J Basil Hennessy (1925-2013), presented by the Council of the Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation, will be given by Dr Stephen Bourke on Wednesday 8th November, 2017. The event will take place at 6.30pm, in General Lecture Theatre 1 which is in the Main Quad of Sydney University, with light refreshments afterwards in the Nicholson Museum.

J. Basil Hennessy AO was Professor of Middle Eastern Archaeology (1970-1990) and Foundation Director of NEAF (1986-1991). After Undergraduate study at Sydney (1947-49), postgraduate research in the Middle East (1950-1952) and several years teaching at Sydney University (1953-61) under the legendary Jim Stewart, Hennessy read his Doctorate at Oxford (1962-64) before launching his field career in Jerusalem at British School Director (1965- 70).

He returned to Australia in 1970, and effectively re-instituted the teaching of Near Eastern Archaeology at Sydney University after a ten-year hiatus. He was confirmed as Edwin Cuthbert Hall Professor in 1973, and thereafter developed hugely influential courses in Levantine and Cypriot archaeology, which produced most of the current batch of Australian Near Eastern scholars active today. As well as his teaching, Hennessy directed two hugely important excavation projects in Jordan, the first at Chalcolithic Teleilat Ghassul (1975-77) and the second at the long-lived ancient city of Pella of the Decapolis (1978-90).

This first Memorial Lecture will celebrate Hennessy’s many achievements in the world of Near Eastern Archaeology, and call for the setting up of a Fund, administered through NEAF, to support the ongoing research and publication of the many works Hennessy set in train.

The inaugural lecture will be given by Dr. Stephen Bourke, current NEAF Treasurer and Director of the Pella Excavations since 1992. Stephen also led four seasons of renewed excavations at Teleilat Ghassul in the 1990s. The lecture will outline Hennessy’s life in Near Eastern Archaeology, from his first work in Turkey and Cyprus, to his seminal meeting with Kathleen Kenyon at Jericho in 1952, which shaped his life in arc

We hope that many of you can come and learn about the man who was the founder and driving force behind the establishment of the Near Eastern Archaeology Foundation.

Although this event is free we would greatly appreciate if you could RSVP your attendance for catering purposes: Phone +61 2 9351 4151, Fax +61 2 9114 0921, or Emmail neaf.archaeology@sydney.edu.au



Bronwyn Woff

Excavations of the Harrietville Chinese Mining site are currently being undertaken in Victoria's gold field region. The one of the project's staff members, Melissa Dunk, is putting together regular blog posts on her wordpress site called Overseas Chinese Archaeology. The blog can be found here: https://oschinesearch.wordpress.com/ and contains updates on the excavations and the behind the scenes activities.



Zvonka Stanin

These trousers are some of the more complete textiles items recovered during the 2017 Alpha Archaeology excavation of the former Carlton United Brewery (CUB2) complex in Swanston Street, Carlton. When excavated, they appeared to be sandwiched between wooden floor boards and a mid-19th century cesspit deposit. Their original condition, was described by the CUB2 conservator Jeff Fox as a ‘mass of unidentified textile covered in mud. Unable to determine form/shape’.


The conservation process which included wet cleaning, immersion by an ultrasonic bath, and freeze drying, separated the textile mass into a more recognisable pattern of garment components. These include front and back ‘trouser’ panels with folded edges that appeared to have been once stitched and before being unpicked. All the major panels appear to be made of a coarse brown and black cotton or wool material, woven tightly on the weft. Thick, horizontal lines are barely apparent on each panel; whether this fading is due to use or taphonomic conditions has yet to be determined. Button holes and matching button imprints on different pieces confirm that the trousers were once more complete.


By tracing individual fragments to create a working canvas mock-up, we were able to show how the trouser panels were placed together, with a front ‘panel’ buttoning onto an underlying waistband which was also buttoned, most likely by four-hole sew through bone or wooden buttons which were common types at the CUB2. The back panel creates exceptional room, in a fit that is otherwise tall and slim, and a good example of the style of construction not commonly discussed in Australian archaeological literature: the ‘fall front‘, ‘drop front fall’, ‘flap pants’ style of men’s pants. The style is understandably associated with convenience; the pattern allows the ‘fall’ to be opened without necessarily unfastening the waistband (or ‘drop your trousers’). A narrower version of the fall (narrow fall) seems to have been the dominant style for breeches, pantaloons, trousers, and overalls from the French Revolution (1790) until the 1840s, when the centre button closure became more common. The ‘broad fall’ style of the CUB2 example, where the ‘fall’ stretches from hip to hip, may have been introduced later (http://www.northwestjournal.ca/VI6, sourced 10/10/2017, but see the Met pants below).


Analysis of the CUB2 trousers so far hints at a manifold significance. The combination of the ‘broad fall’ style and striped fabric appears to have few publicly known comparisons (see for example, https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/79497?rpp=20&pg=1&ao=on&ft=Trousers&pos=17, sourced 10/10/2017). The striped design is reminiscent of the popular taste for patterns in ‘gentleman’s’ fashion of the 1850s and early 1860s, the period that coincides with the Victorian gold rush; and all that it entails. It counters any expectations of ‘dullness’ and ‘conformity’, typical of the latter 19th and early 20th century city clothing for men - all dark colours and creased trousers - and even widens the gaze past those numerous S. T. Gills’ paintings, with their whimsy neckerchiefs at the centre. Can the paintings tell us what kind of man wore these? Broader fashion discourse tells us to ‘go easy’. Through the interplay of economic wealth, and contact between large numbers of people of different classes, social or other standing during this period, fashion became much less of a marker of status than previously known; or than continued in England or Europe (Maynard 1994). The trousers do indicate care and re-use, through the effort it would have taken to unpick all the seams and button holes, which may suggest that both the pattern and material continued to be important.

The brief mock-up experiment was a collaborative effort between Allison Bruce (La Trobe), Olivia Arnold (UNE), Felicity Buckingham and myself. The latter can be contacted on felicitybuckingam@yahoo.com or zstanin50@gmail.com

Images by Z Stanin:
1 Trouser fabric recovered in association with cesspit deposits from CUB2. The right half shows the back of the trousers most completely.
2 The front trouser panels, with the blue marker showing the position of the button holes.
3 The front trouser panels, not including the lining for the ‘fall’ (see image 1). Note that the pockets were more likely under the ‘fall’ as in image 2.

References:
Maynard, Margaret 1994, Fashioned from penury: dress as cultural practice in colonial Australia, Cambridge University Press, Cambridge [England]; New York
http://www.northwestjournal.ca/VI6, sourced 10/10/2017.
https://www.metmuseum.org/art/collection/search/79497?rpp=20&pg=1&ao=on&ft=Trousers&pos=17, sourced 10/10/2017



Fenella Atkinson

You are cordially invited to the Twelfty-Eleventh Annual Archaeologists' Picnic (AAP).

Sunday 17th December 2017, 1pm. Enmore Park (bounded by Enmore Rd, Victoria Rd, Llewellyn St, and Black St) Marrickville, Sydney.

Bring your family, friends, pets. Bring a plate. In case of inclement weather, the honourable organising committee suggest you go to the pub instead (Vic on the Park and Golden Barley are both nearby, the Vic is dog-friendly).

Lucky door prize is an ARC Linkage grant, and runner-up prize is a little hollow feeling inside. Non-attendance will incur penalties as outlined in subsection 23(7).