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ASHA NEWS



Felicity Buckingham

These thin, plastic discs were recovered from a yard context in Lot 61 during the 2016 excavation of the old CUB complex, near the corner of Swanston and Queensberry streets, Melbourne. The above image shows record CUB2 11317 (scale in cm).

Tentatively interpreted as being promotional material (possibly badge blanks, based on size and shape), they read “MISS AUSTRALIAN AIR LEAGUE 1950” and include the Air League emblem of a winged shield. Small oxidized holes are present on all examples and may indicate they were held together by a pin or similar.


Multiple ‘blanks’, including CUB2 11317 (bottom, centre)

Originally named the ‘Air Mindedness Development League’, the Australian Air League (hereafter the ‘League’) was established in 1934 to promote “an interest in aviation both as a career or as a hobby in the youth of Australia”, and “to provide opportunities to develop good citizenship, teamwork and to develop ingenuity and resourcefulness of members” (https://www.airleague.com.au/about/history).

In September 1950, the League sponsored Miss Patricia Sheales, a 20 year old hair salon receptionist (Age, 12 Sep 1950, p. 1), as a contestant in the Miss Victoria quest (Age, 11 Sep 1950, p. 5). These blanks embody the hope that Patricia would go through to the national competition. Patricia then made a number of public appearances, including the League’s annual parade (Age, 2 Oct 1950, p. 4), the Caulfield races (Age, 23 Oct 1950, p. 8), and a ball (Argus, 2 Dec 1950, p. 8), as well as appearing in several promotional pieces of editorial, such as the image below of several Miss Victoria entrants (Advocate, 16 Dec 1950, p. 3).


Pat Sheales (back row, centre) and other Miss Victoria contestants (Advocate, 16 Dec 1950, p. 3)

Unfortunately, Patricia didn’t win the Victorian competition. However, no Miss Australia was crowned at all in 1950 (Age, 24 Feb 1951, p. 3), due to a dispute regarding the chaperone assigned to the previous year’s winner for her international tour (West Australian, 15 Apr 1950, p. 10). Formerly Miss NSW, the NSW branch of the competition backed the decision, and withheld finances unless another chaperone was appointed - the result being the cancellation of said tour outright, and the discontinuation of the competition until 1953.

These blanks were chosen for the light they shed on the youth organisations and popular culture of mid twentieth-century Australia, as well as for the questions they ask about the site. How was the League, the Miss Australia competition, or Patricia Sheales related to Lot 61? If these blanks were promotional items, they were not needed after the Miss Victoria competition in December 1950, and their yard location could suggest they were simply thrown away, and may not have any further relation to the site. Analysis is ongoing, and will hopefully help to answer some of these questions.

Felicity Buckingham, along with Zvonka Stanin, is currently analysing artefacts from the latest CUB dig for Alpha Archaeology, and can be contacted at felicitybuckingham@yahoo.com



Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

Excavations have now concluded at the site of the Carlton Hotel, Geelong. The excavations were carried out ahead of the construction of a new building for the National Disability Insurance Agency in Geelong’s CBD. Early domestic building footings were discovered at the back of the hotel, as well as a barrel cesspit. Artefacts of note included crockery related to the previous Union Inn Hotel, various pipes and a complete bone domino.

For more information, please see the following link:

www.geelongadvertiser.com.au/news/geelong/from-beneath-old-carlton-hotel-site-hints-of-gold-rush-era-lifestyle/





Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

The Heritage Act 2017 which becomes operative on 1 November 2017 is proposed to be supported by new Victorian Heritage Regulations 2017 and Heritage (Underwater Cultural Heritage) Regulations 2017 announced by the Minister for Planning. The Regulations will “set fees for certain activities, set penalties and infringement offences, require details and results of historical archaeological surveys to be provided to the Executive Director, prescribe documents and forms for activities established by the Heritage Act 2017”. A Regulations Impact Statement (RIS) has been prepared, and comments are invited on this and the two sets of Regulations themselves. The closing date for submission of comments is Friday 28th July.

For more information, please see the following link:

https://www.heritage.vic.gov.au/legislation/heritage-regulations


 




Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

Excavation of the historic Bridge Inn Hotel is taking place at Mernda, north-east of Melbourne. Archaeologists have uncovered footings of the early hotel just under the top soil. Various artefacts have been found, as well as aboriginal artefacts. An open day is being held on Saturday, 8th of July between 10am-2pm.

For more information, please see the following links:

http://levelcrossings.vic.gov.au/media-library/news/archaeological-dig-underway-in-mernda
        

http://www.heraldsun.com.au/leader/north/bridge-inn-south-morang-archaeological-dig-makes-key-discoveries/news-story/48359c71371a03f5e024dab1cdf93f04


http://www.heraldsun.com.au/leader/north/archeologists-dig-deep-to-uncover-mysterious-history-of-bridge-inn-hotel-in-mernda/news-story/74b66d48466c478b4d196e40d3d622cd





Felicity Buckingham and Zvonka Stanin

The bricks in the images above and below were recovered from the southern end of Lot 67 in the 2016 excavation of the old CUB complex, near the corner of Swanston and Queensberry streets, Melbourne. This excavation was undertaken by Alpha Archaeology for Scape. Chosen for their rarity (an unusual find in Australia, and perhaps outside of France), these bricks were part of feature 066, a chalky white hand-made brick construction that was initially interpreted as a fireplace within a cellar.


At least three of the feature’s surfaces were comprised of bricks made in Langeais, a town in central France - bearing the makers marks of “Desouches Hubert a Langeais” and “Alexis Lemesle a Langeais”. Initial online research suggests Hubert Desouches ran his business in the 1850s and was declared bankrupt in 1859 (http://en.patrimoine-de-france.com/indre-et-loire/langeais/briqueterie-9.php, accessed 1/08/2016). Alexis Lemesle also appeared to have brick works around the same time - 1853 to perhaps 1875 (http://www.actuacity.com/four-a-carreaux_m81946/, accessed 1/08/2015).


Excavation showed that the fireplace/feature 066 was most likely added after the construction of the original cellar - an awkward, retrofitted addition to the cellar flume, sitting on top of original foundations and built into the cellar wall. Unless reused/curated (e.g. as ballast), these dates suggest a possible 1850s construction date for the cellar (see below).


This area of Melbourne was first settled in the 1850s, with these earlier buildings demolished and replaced with brick terraces sometime before the mid 1880s. Although artifact analysis is ongoing, it is possible that feature 066, and the French bricks added to it after its initial construction, may represent the earliest, c. 1850s to c. 1870s of occupation of Lot 67.

Images provided by Alpha Archaeology, showing artefacts CUB2 04537, CUB2 04538, CUB2 04539 and CUB2 04632. CUB2 04537 and CUB2 04538 with multiple finger print marks. Site image: CUB Scape, Lot 67, view south east facing Swanston Street, showing showing feature 066 at far wall of cellar. Photo credit Zvonka Stanin

Felicity and Zvonka are currently analysing the artefacts from the latest CUB dig for Alpha Archaeology, and can be contacted at either felicitybuckingham@yahoo.com or zstanin50@gmail.com



Googong Township

Navin Officer Heritage Consultants (NOHC) archaeologists have begun work unearthing some of the Canberra region’s early European settlement - a lost nineteenth century schoolhouse in Googong. The dig is being run by Googong Township Pty Ltd in partnership with NOHC and is part of the extensive environmental and heritage survey works being undertaken at Googong. NOHC project Excavation Director and ANU archaeology graduate Dr Rebecca Parkes said the school was a missing piece of local history.

“The school operated into the 20th century but there are very few historical records for it and nobody could remember where it was, so it was lost. We’re hoping the project gives us a nice window into rural life in that period, as there has been very little archaeological evidence found from that period in this area before.”

People are invited to view the archaeological site. Spots are strictly limited and must be booked in advance.

All visitors must wear enclosed flat shoes and be able to comfortably walk along a gently undulating farm trail for approx 800m-1km from the meeting spot to the site (10 minute walk), where they will receive a talk and tour of the site of approximately 30 minutes before returning to their cars. The event is subject to weather. Children must be under the care of a responsible adult at all times.

What:  Archaeological site visit of Googong's first school c.1880's.

When: Saturday 24 June 2017. Session times are strictly 10am, 11am, 12pm and 1pm. A max of 20 people can be booked in each session. Sessions are one hour each.

Registrations: Bookings are strictly limited and may be made via email to enquiries@googong.net. Please be sure to include your preferred session time, your full name and mobile number, and the full names of individuals in your party. We will confirm your booking via email and include details of where to meet.



Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

A 19th century school house has been excavated as part of developments in Googong, NSW. The excavation involved consultant and ANU student archaeologists, and recieved visits from local school children. Artefacts including slate pencils were found among the foundations.

For more information, please see the following links:

http://www.theage.com.au/act-news/anu-archaeologists-unearth-19th-century-history-at-googong-20170605-gwkgqy.html

http://www.archaeology.org/news/5605-170605-australia-school-house



Jessie Garland and Angel Trendafilov, Underground Overground Archaeology

Angel Trendafilov, of Underground Overground Archaeology, has been monitoring the bulk out of the new Convention Centre in Christchurch with the assistance of Kirsa Webb, Tristan Wadsworth, Teri Anderson, Hamish Williams and Peter Mitchell. The site, which was home to a variety of commercial, professional and residential activities in the 19th century, has yielded a large (and still growing) artefact assemblage, several brick lined and artesian wells (see below image), a large number of rubbish pits, and structural features.


Many of the artefacts date to the 1840s-1860s period, suggesting that at least some of the material found may be associated with the early decades of European settlement in Christchurch. The assemblage contains a wide range of artefact types, including several unusual clay smoking pipes, elaborately decorated glass vessels and uncommon ceramics.


Notable artefacts so far include: an early 19th century imitation Mason's jug; a Price and Co. Bear's Grease pot lid; and an imitation engraved Batavian ware dish (see above image).

     

We have also uncovered a French clay pipe with a moulded Native American figure on the bowl (see above image) and a floor tile made by Jackson and Bishop, one of the earliest large scale brick making companies in Christchurch (see below image).


We don't yet know whether the artefact assemblages relate to the residential, commercial or professional uses of the site, but it is worth mentioning that there was a fancy goods store and an auctioneers among the many occupants crammed on to these sections in the 1860s and 1870s.


 

For more information about the archaeology of Christchurch, check out the Underground Overground Archaeology blog "Christchurch Uncovered" at:  http://blog.underoverarch.co.nz/

Artefact images: Jessie Garland
Excavation images: Hamish Williams


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:
https://www.nationaltrust.org.au/education-and-interpretation-alchemy-hill-end/
http://www.gml.com.au/gml-wins-at-2017-nsw-national-trust-heritage-awards/

Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

Excavations continue at various sites across Parramatta, as part of UrbanGrowth NSW’s Parramatta North Urban Transformation Program. The program aims to conserve and better understand the area's heritage and will continue late into 2017. Sites include Aboriginal settlement areas, the Parramatta Female Factory and the Roman Catholic Orphan School. Excavations have so far uncovered knapping sites, children's toys, clerical items and a clay tobacco pipe dated from between 1847-1870.

For more information, please see the following article at:

http://www.urbangrowth.nsw.gov.au/newsroom/archaeological-digs-uncover-fascinating-finds-at-parramatta-north/