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ASHA NEWS



Caitlin D'Gluyas

Following our first reading group event (with the theme of interpreting historical archaeology) in August, ASHA will host a casual/informal walking tour of Parramatta on Saturday, the 23rd September. This will be a chance to have a look around at some interpretive displays of historical archaeology. Perhaps some food for thought for the upcoming conference (don't forget to register for the conference by COB on Wednesday 20th September).

The walk will start at 2:30pm, meeting at the convict hut site on the corner of Marsden and Macquarie Streets. We'll be meeting on the steps out the front of the site. Final list of sites to visit to be confirmed, but please let us know if there is somewhere that you'd like to see. The tentative list includes: Bakers Mews-50 O’Connell Street, 25 Smith Street, 1 Parramatta Square.

On the same day, GML is also having an open day (another form of interpretation to talk about!) of the Parramatta RSL site, which can be booked through the RSL website. The last tour will be at 1:00pm, so you could book and attend that before the walking tour if you're interested. Book through the RSL reception: (02) 8865 5100. For more details: http://www.gml.com.au/lawn-bowl-thing-past/



Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

Excavations 25 graves, which uncovered the remains of 27 individuals, has recently been completed at Milton cemetery in the south of New Zealands's South Island. The excavations are part of research being conducted in partnership with Tokomaririro Project 60 (TP60) and the Anglican Church. The research will look into the lives of the first settlers to the area - where they came from, what hardships they endured in life, and which current members of the town formerly known as Tokomairiro or Tokomairaro are related to them.

For more information, please see: https://www.newsroom.co.nz/2017/08/16/42910/how-tough-was-life-in-colonial-new-zealand



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



Paul Macgregor, The Uncovered Past Institute

The Uncovered Past Institute will be undertaking the first archaeological excavation in Victoria of a Chinese mining settlement between 9th - 28th October 2017. For around thirty years from the late 1850s Harrietville was home to hundreds of Victoria’s Chinese gold miners. The largely undisturbed site includes mine workings, water races, building foundations, and gardens: a rare survivor of the heyday of Chinese gold mining in Victoria.

The project, happening over three weeks in October 2017, will be led by archaeologist Gordon Grimwade and run as a field school, and funded by public participation, along the lines of public field schools held overseas. It is an initiative of The Uncovered Past Institute, a not-for-profit organisation established in 2016 to run archaeology projects based on public participation. Students and members of the public are encouraged to participate in this excavation.

The project team includes archaeologists Gordon Grimwade, Melissa Dunk, Jennifer Chandler, Allison Carrol and Asa Ferrier; and historians Paul Macgregor, Diann Talbot and Andrew Swift.

Highlights of project participation include:
Intensive training, and participation in, fieldwork (site excavation, site surveying), and artefact processing (cleaning, recording, identifying and cataloguing).
A maximum of 4 participants for every supervising archaeologist in our team.
Guided history and heritage tours of the Upper Ovens Valley, focusing on mining history and the Chinese pioneers of the Valley.
Daily and evening workshops and lectures.
Working alongside some of the most experienced archaeologists and historians of Chinese heritage, and mining heritage, in Australia.
Learning how to identify Chinese artefacts such as ceramics, coins, bottles, foodstuffs and beverages, medicines and opium-smoking paraphernalia.
Being a part of archaeological discovery in one of the key areas of 19th century Chinese mining history in Australia.

For more information, please visit the project website:www.uncoveredpast.org.au/harrietville-chinese-mining-village/



Compiled by Bronwyn Woff

A swathe of excavations will soon begin in Melbourne, ahead of multiple new train stations being built in the CBD. The stations will service a new tunnel which is being built below the city to ease congestion in the current city loop tunnel. Excavations are expected to uncover hundreds of thousands of artefacts, as well as evidence from the early stages of Melbourne's urban city.

For more information, please see the following news article:
www.adelaidenow.com.au/news/national/melbourne-metro-rail-project-archaeological-digs-expected-to-find-up-to-one-million-artefacts/



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

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