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ASHA NEWS

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Upcoming Event Short
Richard Morrison, ASHA ACT Representative

This very successful event was held on the morning of 4 May 2019 within the Canberra and Region Heritage Festival. It was the second such symposium partnered with the Canberra Archaeological Society (CAS) - a body established in 1963 (prior to ASHA) to provide a forum for academics, students and members of the public on all types of archaeology. It conducts archaeological projects and monthly lectures.

The Symposium, ‘Contemporary archaeology: How archaeology is practised today’ was held at the prestigious National Museum of Australia with 5 eminent speakers, including one who Skyped-in, and was jointly organised by Richard Morrison of ASHA and Dr Iain Johnston of CAS. The Symposium flyer is available here.

It was advertised in numerous places and was attended by more than 60 people (we had 100 Eventbrite registrations) including the ACT’s Minister for Environment and Heritage, archaeology and heritage students, academics, and a broad cross section of the public.

We opened with a traditional Welcome to Country undertaken by Paul House, a Ngambri man, including a short didgeridoo presentation with some audience participation on clapping sticks.

The symposium introduction presented information on historical archaeology, ASHA and and CAS.

Three speakers, including Emeritus Professor Richard Wright AM (who came out from retirement in Sydney to speak), illustrated their important work in historical archaeology.

Dr Michael Pearson AO discussed the work, including his own, of Australian archaeologists across Antarctica in the context of activity by all nations.He highlighted the issue of a lack of ongoing and current involvement of archaeologists in Mawson’s Hut conservation.

Emeritus Professor Richard Wright AM spoke on his important and sensitive work under difficult circumstances in providing archaeological evidence war crimes trials related to various European conflicts. His paper provided confronting and compelling insights into terrible crimes and the pursuit of those responsible. He also reflected on his more recent key role in identifying 250 Australian soldiers buried in mass graves from WWI at Fromelles, France.

Dr Alice Gorman spoke on her current research into Apollo 11 heritage found at Tranquillity Base on the Moon. In particular, she focussed on the conceptual significance of shadows which have been used both by scientists, to investigate the Moon’s topography and geomorphology, and conspiracy theorists, to attempt to disprove that Apollo 11 ever went to the Moon.Dr Gorman gave her paper (from Adelaide, via Skype) on Space Archaeology and, in so doing, met the Heritage Festival’s theme of Space.

Dave Johnston, Indigenous heritage and archaeological consultant, presented and discussed a video illustrating the story of a positive collaboration between farmers and the Indigenous community concerning an ochre quarry in the Canberra region as shared heritage.

Dr Iain Johnston spoke on his Australian Institute of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Studies project returning Indigenous cultural heritage. He focussed on an aspect of this project related to an important rock art site at Kakadu and it’s recording through usual techniques and oral histories from the descendants of the creators still connected to the site. This illuminated the most recent repainting, in possibly, a very ancient process of traditional renewal - the site has been dated to about 25,000 years ago.

A Q&A panel concluded the Symposium.

The audience definitely seemed to appreciate the interesting and varied topics, in comments explicitly referring to the astonishing scope and diversity now covered in the broad field of archaeology, including historical archaeology.

The President of CAS, Dr Duncan Wright, congratulated (on behalf of CAS) Iain Johnston and myself ‘for an extremely successful ‘Contemporary Archaeology’ symposium. This included a remarkable array of fascinating presentations - archaeology of mass burials/ war crimes, space archaeology, archaeology of Antarctica, local ACT archaeology, also rock art and repatriation. It was attended by 60+ members of the public (including Senator (sic) Mick Gentleman) and Richard and Iain should be congratulated for how smoothly this went, not to mention their sparkling MCing!’

As an initiative of ASHA to promote historical archaeology and hopefully encourage new memberships in the regions, this was an undoubted success.

Asha events
Written by AHA Editors

Volume 36 of Australasian Historical Archaeology was mailed to members in January. The issue is the first of the new editorial team of Annie Clarke, Penny Crook, James Flexner and Sarah Hayes and showcases a range of papers on historical archaeology in Australia–Pacific region.

The issue includes a fascinating review of the politicisation of Australian colonial smoking practices and clay pipe form known as the ‘Squatters Budgeree’ (Gojak and Courtney) and a review of recent palynological evidence of the landscape of the Tank Stream in Sydney (Macphail and Owen).

Two papers from the broader Pacific rim, on foreign goods in Hawaiian households (Flexner et al) and a mission house in Vanuatu (Zubrzycka et al) showcase developing trends in historical archaeology in the region, and demonstrate the importance of regional context for Australian and New Zealand sites where similar stories of cultural intersection echoed through the colonies.

An introduction to the archaeology of the Parramatta Industrial School for Girls (Jones) demonstrates the importance of reflecting on the material culture of recent times through an archaeological lens.

The volume also includes two studies of overlooked components of infrastructure best understood by a landscape approach: water-management infrastructure in the case of the Victorian goldfields (Davies and Lawrence) and stone-arch bridges in the case of transport networks in Canterbury, NZ (O’Connell and Koenig).

A contribution to the advancement of use-wear analysis on glass vessels from Christchurch (Platts and Smith) has potential applications for artefact studies through the Australasian region.

Finally, a research report on a mining settlement in the Blue Mountains of NSW (Parkes et al) sets out the potential for a closer study of this domestic assemblage in an industrial setting.

Along with book reviews and thesis abstracts, this diverse selection of papers demonstrates the strength of AHA as the outlet for new research in historical archaeology.

For the full contents list see http://www.asha.org.au/journals/2010s/volume-36.

Volume 37 is filling up fast so prospective authors should email editor@asha.org.au as soon as possible if they are planning to submit in 2019 (and note the revision Submission Guidelines http://www.asha.org.au/submission-information.html).

If you haven’t received your copy, contact secretary@asha.org.au.


Compiled by Richard Morrison, ACT Representative

The protection of Australia's commemorative places and monuments report

This document has been released recently, prepared by the Australian Heritage Council and the Department of the Environment and Energy heritage staff, on the request of the Minister, the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, who sought advice on the adequacy of existing legal protections for places and monuments that relate to the early interactions between European explorers and settlers and Australia's Indigenous peoples.  The report finds that the current legislative and policy framework across the country is adequate, but also makes a number of recommendations to allow Australians to further recognise and promote our shared Indigenous and colonial heritage.

The report can be found at https://www.environment.gov.au/system/files/resources/4474fb91-bd90-4424-b671-9e2ab9c39cca/files/protection-australia-commemorative-places-monuments.pdf

Re-appointments to the Australian Heritage Council (AHC)

in March 2018 the Minister responsible for the AHC, the Hon Josh Frydenberg MP, announced that five AHC members were being re-appointed: the Hon Dr Kemp AC (chair), Dr Jane Harrington (historic heritage), Associate Professor Don Garden OAM (historic heritage), Dr Lyndon Ormond-Parker (Indigenous heritage) and Ms Rachel Perkins (Indigenous heritage). They join current members Dr Steve Morton (natural heritage) and Dr Jennie Whinam (natural heritage) on the seven-seat Council.

For further information on these people see http://www.environment.gov.au/heritage/organisations/australian-heritage-council/about

Melbourne Domain and Parkland Precinct added to the National Heritage List (NHL)

Also, in March 2018, it was announced that this place had  been added to the NHL after a review of the earlier Emergency Nomination Listing.  It was seen as an iconic part of Melbourne and the place as a whole is a parkland landscape developed and shaped by its historic and on-going function as a rare government domain. The Kings Domain Resting Place within the parklands is also of particular significance because of its association with Australia's national story of the repatriation of Indigenous people's remains.

For further information see: https://www.environment.gov.au/heritage/places/national/melbourne-domain-parkland-memorial-precinct


Compiled by Richard Morrison, ACT Representative

ACT Region Heritage Symposium 2018 - Update

Heritage On The Edge: Continuity With Change In Canberra? -

This year's Symposium will focus on Canberra's Modern ('Modernist') Architecture, a style widely used in Canberra for public buildings and private housing in the mid-20th Century, and of international standing.  Its minimalist form is not a contemporary style today as Canberra rapidly changes with a focus on innovation and development, and high rise living.  Change is a constant, but how are we applying it in Canberra so heritage is identified and protected to ensure a connection with our past, and a continuity of our sense of place?

With the sub-themes Vital and Vulnerable: threats to the Modern Urban Landscape; Continuity with Change: sustaining Canberra's Modern heritage; and Hidden yet Found: revealing invisible Modern heritage, the Symposium will look at what Canberra's Modern Urban Landscape is and what its heritage values are—central to Canberra story, and its vulnerability.  How can we take such values into account with development and the broader impact on heritage with change?  What processes, what guidelines can we apply to sustain Canberra's modern heritage, and our heritage and its landscape more generally to ensure continuity with change and maintain a sense of place—a sense of community engagement?  What are methods to see hidden aspects of this heritage, applying tools, such as the archaeology of structures, oral histories, and other evidence, so the Canberra community and visitors can appreciate this aspect of Canberra's story.

The diverse program features local and interstate perspectives, exploring Canberra's modernist heritage from different angles: design for learning; conserving the marble facade of the National Library; a creative approach to engagement with Northbourne Ave's public housing precinct; working with planning legislation; managing Canberra's mid century landscapes; lessons from Sydney, Hobart and Armidale about valuing, conserving and celebrating our mid century spaces and places. 

Take a tour of ANU's mid-century architecture; get involved in a panel discussion on key issues; and end the day with a light-hearted look at the symbiotic relationship between cocktail culture and mid-century life in the capital.

The program will be available shortly but I have been assured that there will likely be talks of interest to historical archaeologists within the general topic as there has been in previous years.

Date: Saturday 18 August 2018

Time: 9.00am - 5.00pm

Venue: RN Robertson Building (46) Science Road ANU 2601

Cost: $75 full registration; $55 members host organisations; $35 concessions, fulltime students, speakers

Registration, and the program, when available, can be found at: https://www.nationaltrust.org.au/event/act-region-heritage-symposium-2018/

Archaeology in the Pub, Canberra

Call for presenters now open!  The format is 8 researchers, 8 minutes to tell a story, wow the crowd or share a breakthrough: we've had ecology stand up comedy, chemistry experiments, biology quizzes, and physics poetry.  Contact Phil to get involved. He takes a broad view of the subject... palaeontology, anthropology, history, all welcome.
WHEN: 7 PM Friday 21 September
WHERE: Smiths Alternative, 76 Alinga St Civic
COST: Free thanks to Inspiring the ACT and Physics@ANU.

See for further information and contact https://www.facebook.com/events/1779747452120727/

Professor Peter Stone OBE talk: Protecting cultural property in conflict. Critical responsibility or unnecessary, impossible, distraction?

Special Centre for Archaeological Research Centre/Centre for Heritage and Museum Studies seminar, ANU, 3.30pm 10 August 2018, in Room 2.02, Sir Roland Wilson Building.

Cultural property (not only archaeological sites but archives, library and museum collections, and art) is always damaged and destroyed during a conflict - it is what happens, and there is nothing that can be done about it. However, a proportion of such damage and destruction is frequently avoidable and has been regarded as bad practice by military theorists for over 2,000 years.  National and international attempts, with varying success, have been made to reduce these losses.  The Blue Shield organisation was created in 1996 in an attempt to raise the profile of cultural property protection. Since then it has worked with the military and other relevant organisations to flag the importance of this work. Progress has been slow but recently significant steps have been taken.

For further information see http://www.anu.edu.au/events/special-carcentre-for-heritage-and-museum-studies-seminar

ANU's Triabunna Barracks, Tasmania, Archaeological Field School 2019 announced

This will be held 4 -27 January 2019.  Organised by the School of Archaeology & Anthropology, Research School of Humanities & the Arts, ANU College of Arts and the Social Sciences, under the supervision of Ash Lenton.  It will again focus on the investigation of the military barracks which serviced the adjacent Maria Island convict settlement in the 1840's.

Contact: Sooa.admin.cass@anu.edu.au

See for further information https://m.facebook.com/TriabunnaBarracksANU.Dig/ and Twitter #TriabunnaBarracks

Written by Blog Editor

Just two more weeks to go until National Archaeology Week kicks off in Australia! The week begins on 21st May, and there are lots of events happening in and around the week (most are free!) that you can pop in to and spread the word about the wonderful archaeological work going on across the country! For more information, including a calendar of events, see: http://www.archaeologyweek.com/

Written by Richard Morrison

As an ASHA promotional exercise, both of membership and historical archaeology, it was suggested that your regional representatives might organise a regional event and some measure of financial support might be available for this. As there is no strong Historical Archaeology base in the ACT - there is no tertiary teaching of it here in what is also a comparatively small region - it was considered prudent to explore the possibility of a joint event of some sort with the Canberra Archaeological Society (CAS) if we could find a mutually relevant theme and type of event.


The Q&A panel, L to R, Dr Michael Pearson AO, Dr Duncan Wright(ANU), Professor June Ross (UNE), Dr Tim Maloney (ANU) and Dr Tristen Jones (ANU), Maritime Rock Art Symposium, NMA,14/4/18. Photograph R Morrison.

The end result was a half day, contact-themed, free, public symposium which was held at the National Museum of Australia (NMA) during the Canberra and Region Heritage Festival. This drew a crowd of about 50, including archaeology students, academics, consultants and the public, to hear five experts relate investigations of maritime contact rock art across Australia, starting with Dr Michael Pearson AO, setting the scene by describing approaches to the identification of ships/boats found in Australian rock art. Case studies then followed in papers presented and/or written by academics from ANU, UNE and UWA. This was rounded off with a Q&A panel of all speakers. It is expected that the speakers' presentations will eventually be loaded on the CAS website.

The success of this event has encouraged CAS to suggest a joint event with ASHA be an annual activity.

 


Written by the AIMA/ASHA 2018 Conference Committee

Come see all the research that’s been hiding!
Come hear all the results that haven’t seen the light of day!
Come and listen to all the wondrous things people have done in the past!

Welcome to the 2018 AIMA/ASHA conference, proudly brought to you by University of New England!

The Clearinghouse is all about dusting off that old research and getting it out into the light. It’s time for the honours thesis you did ten years ago to be presented, that project you did in that in-between year to show itself, and for the “I really should do something with that” to finally have something done with it…by presenting at this year’s AIMA/ASHA conference 27-28 September 2018.

Just to be clear, we want genuine research and good presentations, not a slide show of your summer holidays. For this reason we’re keeping the themes as broad as we can. Fear not if you don’t think your research fits in, we want you to submit your abstract anyway and we’ll find a place for it!

We are looking forward to seeing you in Parramatta!

The Clearinghouse Conference Details:
When: 27 - 29 September 2018
Where: UNE Campus Parramatta

For more information on: Call for papers, Draft Conference schedule, Registration and Conference sponsors please see: http://www.asha.org.au/2018-asha-aima-conference


Written by Richard Morrison

An inaugural, joint, free Maritime Contact Rock Art Symposium between the Australasian Society for Historical Archaeology and the Canberra Archaeological Society will be held at the beginning of the 2018 Canberra and Region Heritage Festival at the National Museum of Australia. This event will be help on 14th April 2018, between 9.30am and 12.00pm.

The symposium will comprise a series of illustrated presentations and stories by rock art experts and other archaeologists describing investigations into a range of depictions, found across Australia, of European and other sea craft encountered by Aboriginal Australians. This will be followed by a Q&A panel. (See programme below.)

Bookings can be made at https://maritimecasasha.eventbrite.com.au


Compiled by Blog Editor

A reminder that National Archaeology Week (20-26 May 2018) is fast approaching!

If you have an event you wish to advertise, or if you want to check out what's on, go to: http://www.archaeologyweek.com/ where you'll find a state-by-state events list. You can also find National Archaeology Week on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/archaeologyweek/

The state representatives are:
NSW – Helen Nicholson - nhelen@tpg.com.au
Qld – Paddy Waterson - paddy.waterson@gmail.com
SA – Antoinette Hennessy - antoinette.hennessy@flinders.edu.au
Tas – Samuel Dix – samuel.dix@griffithuni.edu.au
Vic – Caroline Spry – c.spry@latrobe.edu.au
WA – Wendy Reynen – wa@australianarchaeology.com

And if you are posting on social media, please remember to use the hashtag #2018NAW

Written by Richard Morrison

A joint half-day event with the Canberra Archaeological Society and ASHA will be held at the National Museum of Australia, Canberra, on Saturday 14 April 2018 in ACT Region Heritage Week. Speakers will include Professor Sue O’Connor (ANU), Dr Mike Pearson AO, Professor June Ross (UNE), Dr Tristen Jones (ANU) and Dr Duncan Wright (ANU). There will be a Q&A panel of the speakers at the end of the talks. For more information please see: https://maritimecasasha.eventbrite.com.au