Students Dig Tel Achzib, Fall 2014 —

Students in Dr. Manor's archaeology class have lab sessions at Tel Achzib, an artificial tel near Searcy. See the article on Tel Achzib. As students dig, they are practicing skills and techniques they have learned in the classroom. Dr. Manor takes a number of photos for his record, and we are posting a few here.



August 25, 2014…

A new season at Tel Achzib, Harding's artificially built site to teach archaeology.

This was the first day for the fall 2014 season.

Students are: Amber, Mackenzie, Edgar, Aundrey, Niles, Megan, and Michelle.

The metal sheds in the background cover the squares in which the work will proceed.



September 1, 2014…




In 2013, the work at Tel Achzib began to find a shrine with a golden calf, a fertility figurine (the Barbie doll) and a four-horned altar on its side.




The work in another square uncovered "remains" of Samson on whom a column had fallen in the "destruction" of the site. The outer wall of the building can be seen on the upper left.




The 2014 season began in earnest today with Megan Moores, Niles McClure and Michelle Gomez Gutierrez preparing their initial sketches. In the other square, Edgar Gomez, Mackenzie English and Amber Walker are doing their sketches.



September 8, 2014…








Bedouin tea with Michelle Gomez Gutierrez, Aundrey Flewellen, Megan Moores, and Edgar Hernandez Gomez.







Edgar found a pomegranate in the shrine area!


"Cousin It" reaching for his jug!



September 22, 2014…

Tel Achzib STRIKES again! Weather was GREAT today!


Edgar is beginning to expose a four-horned incense altar.



Amber (left) is articulating a piece of pottery beside the wall.




Mackenzie (right) is preparing a collection of ceramic vessels for photographs.












Aundrey, Mackenzie and Amber sifting soil to locate small artifacts.




Niles (left) uses the pick to loosen the soil while Megan and Michelle watch. Michelle (right) uses the trowel to gather the soil while looking for artifacts.


Megan (left) works to remove the soil after Niles has loosened it. Mackenzie (right) is taking the wheelbarrow to the soil dump.



October 4, 2014…

Saturday was our day-long excavation at Tel Achzib. It gives us a good uninterrupted session to hone skills.


I am teaching the group how to triangulate artifacts. Looking on are Niles McClure, Amber Walker, Mackenzie English, Megan Moores and Michelle Gomez Gutierrez.





This picture shows Amber and Mackenzie removing some of the artifacts from the favissa immediately behind the shrine.











This photo is of the favissa and the various artifacts in it, including a bull, a number of ceramic bowls (most of which are broken) and an oil lamp.











Amber and Mackenzie take elevations of the various artifacts.










One of our wildlife buddies sunning itself at Tel Achzib.










Two photos show the four-horned altar that was exposed last year, and another one emerging from the excavation this year. Notice the pomegranate on the raised platform.


Niles McClure, Megan Moores and Michelle Gomez Gutierrez continue to remove soil from their square.








Record-keeping is always important.









October 7, 2014…




I was not planning to post after today's dig, but I could not pass up the excitement of the students. One group located a collection of earrings.







The other square had uncovered the scapula last time, but was not able to remove it. After triangulating, taking elevation and other record issues, Megan Moores finally removes it and, I guess you could say, she looks "stoked." Sadly, the bone was not worked into an artifact. Oh well; that is the way it often works.



THEN, surprise, they found a real arrowhead! This one was not one that I put into the system, but apparently was one from the earlier native Americans. It was in the overburden matrix. I was proud of them. Megan and Niles McClure are doing the recording keeping.



October 20, 2014…


Mackenzie English (left) continues the articulation of the four-horned altar (more yet to come). Edgar (right)

has uncovered part of a ceramic vessel.


The group Aundrey Flewellen, Edgar Hernandez, Michelle Gomez Gutierrez,

Amber Lynn Walker and Mackenzie English work on the shrine area.


A regular treat--bedouin tea in preparation.



November 3, 2014…



A beautiful day at Tel Achzib! Niles McClure and Michelle Gomez Gutierrez are triangulating the small juglet they discovered.







In the meantime, Mackenzie English, Edgar Hernandez, and Aundrey Flewellen work to expose more of the shrine.

The sunset was stunning at the end of the day.



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