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Mathew Sisk's Snapshots

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  1. Sign

    Snapshot Title: Sign
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: The East Cliff-face at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    One of several signs to keep unauthorized people out of the archaeological sites.



  2. Excavation Forbiden

    Snapshot Title: Excavation Forbiden
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: The East Cliff-face at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Sign.



  3. Edible Seed

    Snapshot Title: Edible Seed
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Qedemt GraveS4
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Earlier in the day the family who's farm is next to Qedemt brought us a plate of these seeds as a snack. While playing a rousing game of "Toss the Food" with their small children one must have fallen...



  4. Battery

    Snapshot Title: Battery
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Qedemt GraveS4
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Part of the pile of charged and uncharged batteries that was result of a poorly sealed case.



  5. Abri Castanet South Sector

    Snapshot Title: Abri Castanet South Sector
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: The East Cliff-face at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This is the excavation structure for the 32,000 archaeological site of Abri Castanet.



  6. Bone

    Snapshot Title: Bone
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Qedemt GraveS4
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Rib bone detail



  7. Unfortunate

    Snapshot Title: Unfortunate
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Block K from right 01
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Pest



  8. detail01

    Snapshot Title: detail01
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Block K from right 01
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    detail01



  9. Marker on rock.

    Snapshot Title: Marker on rock.
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Front view of Abri Castanet excavations
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The note says "Temp Datum under here"
    Paper can blow away. Rocks last longer.



  10. Sediment sample

    Snapshot Title: Sediment sample
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Front view of Abri Castanet excavations
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This piece of sediment, from the edge of a fire feature, was taken out as one block for micromorphological sediment analysis.



  11. Screw

    Snapshot Title: Screw
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Front view of Abri Castanet excavations
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    A screw used as a site datum in the old excavations.



  12. Prism

    Snapshot Title: Prism
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Front view of Abri Castanet excavations
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The wall mounted prism that we use as a site datum.



  13. Artifact

    Snapshot Title: Artifact
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: The North (Peyrony) Section at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This level is the archaeological horizon and an unexcavated artifact is visible.



  14. Broken rock

    Snapshot Title: Broken rock
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: The North (Peyrony) Section at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This rock was cracked when the rock shelter roof fell onto the archaeological occupation level. In older photographs the river cobble that made the crack is still in place.



  15. Left Hand

    Snapshot Title: Left Hand
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Qedemt GraveS4
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The left hand of the s4 skeleton



  16. Soil Detail

    Snapshot Title: Soil Detail
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Abri Castanet Fire Feature 25-06-10
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Detail of a section consisting mainly of very burnt bone.



  17. Stone tool

    Snapshot Title: Stone tool
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Abri Castanet Fire Feature 25-06-10
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    A small stone flake



  18. Cervid Teeth

    Snapshot Title: Cervid Teeth
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Abri Castanet Fire Feature 25-06-10
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The unburnt teeth of a red deer or rein deer resting in articulation on top of the fire feature



  19. Artifact Detail: Endscraper

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Endscraper
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This object is a partially buried endscraper on a retouched blade. The production of blades is a characteristic of the Aurignacian. They consist of a long, thin blade of stone with a several smaller...



  20. Bedrock

    Snapshot Title: Bedrock
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The Aurignacian layers at Castanet rest directly on bedrock, shown here. The bedrock consists of platy limestone pieces relatively loosely held together. During the excavations, as we walk across th...



  21. Limestone Block

    Snapshot Title: Limestone Block
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This is an example of a medium sized limestone block in the archaeological horizon. When looking across the surface, most of the objects are these blocks. Most of our excavation surface is made up o...



  22. Referencing Difficulties

    Snapshot Title: Referencing Difficulties
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Sometimes, the distortion and decrease in resolution on the margins of the Gigapans makes it difficult to locate objects. For instance, there is an important object in this area, excavated on the sam...



  23. Hole in a Limestone Block

    Snapshot Title: Hole in a Limestone Block
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Occasionally, we find a block of limestone with a hole in it. The Aurignacian people in the region often bored holes in stone of the overhanging rockshelter, called “Pierres à anneaux” in French...



  24. Artifact Detail: Burin

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Burin
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Underneath the whitish object is a worked stone tool. It is a tool type known as a burin. Burins are made in a unique way and have a thick durable edge that work very well for chiseling or gouging t...



  25. Artifact Detail: Tooth

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Tooth
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    This object is a tooth from an herbivore, likely a reindeer. It was more than likely brought into the shelter as part of an animal that was subsequently butchered. Teeth are very dense and preserve ...



  26. Barcode System

    Snapshot Title: Barcode System
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    Each object, sediment sample and bucket of recovered sediment is given a unique barcode. Using scanners like those at a grocery store, this allows us to very quickly access all of the data associated...



  27. Sieved Sediment

    Snapshot Title: Sieved Sediment
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    These are the screens holding sediment that has washed, sieved and is drying and waiting to be sorted. When sieving we use two screen sizes. Most of the material is found in the smaller screen. Bec...



  28. Sediment Buckets

    Snapshot Title: Sediment Buckets
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The sediment from each active excavation unit is saved in these buckets (labeled with it's unit, the date and details of the stratigraphy). These buckets are then washed, sieved and sorted. This all...



  29. Excavation Tools

    Snapshot Title: Excavation Tools
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    We excavate the site using a variety of tools: brushes of various sizes, bamboo skewers, cups made from plastic bottles and pieces of PVC piping. (The rocks are not excavations tools)



  30. Artifact Detail: Stone Tool Fragment

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Stone Tool Fragment
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    An unmodified flint flake. These are the most commonly found objects at Castanet and most Paleolithic sites. It is important to note that while they have not been retouched into a formal tool type, ...



  31. Artifact Detail: Bone Fragment

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Bone Fragment
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    A 32,000 year old reindeer bone fragment. It is broken, most likely during butchery.



  32. Artifact Detail: Antler Piece

    Snapshot Title: Artifact Detail: Antler Piece
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    A piece of reindeer antler from near where the tines branch off. This particular object has traces of being worked, but is not a formal tool. Other pieces of antler at Castanet are made into tools t...



  33. Photo Reference Points

    Snapshot Title: Photo Reference Points
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castanet Excavation 2008
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    In order to later reference the image into the digital elevation model (DEM) of the excavation surface, a number of known reference points are needed. The points are first recorded in the sire grid u...



  34. CSHO

    Snapshot Title: CSHO
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castel-Merle
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The Center for the Study of Human Origens (NYU) Logo.



  35. Abri Castanet

    Snapshot Title: Abri Castanet
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Castel-Merle
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The South Sector excavations at Abri Castanet



  36. Excavation Tools

    Snapshot Title: Excavation Tools
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Excavations at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The cut bottles are used for scooping up loose sediment.

    The bag contains labels for artifacts.

    The smaller pin like thing in the center is the main excavation tool.



  37. Points of reference.

    Snapshot Title: Points of reference.
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Excavations at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    For this image, I placed markers at a series of known points so that I could register the photo into our site gird.



  38. Brushes

    Snapshot Title: Brushes
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Excavations at Abri Castanet
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    When excavating we need to clean the surface frequently. This helps us see any changes in the sediment and any objects we may have missed.



  39. Fossil

    Snapshot Title: Fossil
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Washed and sorted material.
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    The texture on this small piece of limestone comes from a fossilized shell. It is part of the limestone and dates to a much much older time period than the archaeological material.



  40. Limestone

    Snapshot Title: Limestone
    Taken by: Mathew Sisk

    Image: Washed and sorted material.
    Image Owner: Mathew Sisk



    Description:

    An example of the small fragments of limestone found in the screens. All of the offwhite / brownish colored material is limestone. This is part of the sediment and comes from the bedrock and the roo...



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