Excavation Update: Group Five

This week’s update on the progress of excavation group five comes courtesy of ANTH60a student, Chang “Adrian” Lou. Adrian is a Brandeis University undergraduate student majoring in International and Global Studies.

Another Friday came with beautiful weather. We started our second unit, unit 113, last week and continued to work on it. As one of our team members was unable to attend, our TA decided to give us hand. The digging process was not easy at all. The unit contained a huge amount of rocks and roots, and our trowels were not the best tools for them. The situation became even worse when we reached layer C. Rocks began to concentrate in corners and created many difficulties for us to clean up our walls.

Everything other than rocks and roots looked fine. Last week we found the topsoil extraordinarily sandy, but today, in layer B and C, the soil texture was rather normal. However, the soil color of this unit was, in general, lighter than our first section; even the sand looked comparatively whiter. After removing the rocks, we made progress with our digging work. With the help of a skillful and experienced TA, we reached the subsoil fairly soon. We managed to finish the unit and clean up all of the walls. After taking a final picture of the unit, we moved on to the profile drawing. Detailed layer information can be well documented by this process.

Profile drawing of unit 113 (Op. 3) by members of excavation group five
Profile drawing of unit 113 (Op. 3) by members of excavation group five

Sadly, we only found one object today. It was a whole metal nail, found at the bottom of layer B. Although we did not find any evidence of a structure nearby, our finding still suggests the possibility of potential human activity.

Iron spike discovered in unit 113 (Op. 3) by excavation group five
Iron spike discovered in unit 113 (Op. 3) by excavation group five

Before backfilling the soil, David, one of our team members, flipped a penny that is made in 2015 into our unit. It is a tradition that is also functional. The coin may roughly suggest the date of our operation to future excavators and researchers, and it can also bring good luck!


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