Archaeology all around


What do you think of when you hear the word archaeology? Does it conjure images of dusty digs in Egypt, exploring pyramids and the search for royal mummies? Or perhaps excavating the collapsed remains of a castle in Europe? Maybe you think of the quest for El Dorado, the lost city of gold? Or even Indiana Jones and the search for the Ark of the Covenant?

Archaeology is defined as the study of human history and prehistory through the excavation of sites and the analysis of artifacts and other physical remains. While many people assume that archaeology focuses on important people and places, it can also focus on the more mundane, everyday experiences of the common people.

Yet how many of us stop to think about how much archaeology we see every day simply walking or driving around town?

For decades, local residents and tourists alike drove along US-41 just south of town. Some of the archaeological remains in the area were visible in the stone charcoal kilns remaining from the Carp River Furnace complex. Others, like the site of an Anishnaabe settlement that predated the arrival of white settlers, are less obvious but no less important to our local history.

This year is the 10th anniversary of Internationa

l Archaeology Day on October 17. Out of thousands of participants, Marquette Regional History Center is thrilled to be one of 45 world-wide Long Term Collaborators listed by the Archaeological Institute of America.

Eric Drake is shown excavating. (Image courtesy of Eric Drake)

Traditionally we hold an Archaeology Fair, yet, this year, keeping our community safe means we can’t, so we will be spreading our celebration out throughout the month of October. We’re challenging you to become a community archaeologist with MRHC Archaeological Bingo!

Each space on your Bingo card has an archaeological challenge for you to complete. Complete five in a row and you have a Bingo, along with a chance to win great prizes. You can complete any or all rows on your card for more chances to win, and discover archaeology in your own backyard and beyond.

Marquette Archaeology Bingo is great for families or individuals across a broad range of ages. You can turn in entries physically, virtually, or both. The game runs throughout the month of October and will require you to go outside, so get going and explore the archaeology all around you!

$15 purchases a bingo card, one day museum admission for those in your household participating, and a prize! Game runs October 1-30, 2020. To participate: Come to the MRHC between October 1-25 to join and start your bingo game. Curbside bingo card pick up also available. For a virtual bingo card go to marquettehistory.org and join the game.

Then, on October 21 at 6:30, Eric Drake, PhD, Heritage Program Manager of the Hiawatha National Forest, will present his talk: Working to Stay Together in “Forsaken Out of the Way Places:” Investigating Anishinaabe Logging Settlements as Sites of Social Refuge and Resilience.

A Native American family at Nahma is shown. (Image courtesy of Eric Drake)

In his presentation, Drake will discuss stories of some of Michigan’s oldest Native American tribes. Learn about Anishinaabe labor in the logging industries of the central Upper Peninsula and the history of the Nahma Indian community in Delta County, through his archaeological investigation of Native American logging camps as sites of social refuge.

This live online slide presentation will include time for questions. $5 donation to the History Center to join this program. Register ahead for the online program at marquettehistory.org/things-to-do.

These programs are supported in part by the Community Foundation of Marquette County.


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