Artifact & Material Analysis

Detailed and refined analysis of materials are critical to any interpretation of archaeological findings.  We have a strong focus on the study of materials analysis and a range of comparative collections and scientific collections which provide hands-on examples that students can draw upon to better understand and interpret the artifacts that they encounter from archaeological sites.   pottery artifactOur faculty, are actively engaged in research which involves detailed analysis of assemblage based data as well as refined analysis of particular sets of data including glass, glass, beads, and a range of ceramic analysis.  Given our shared interest in the African Diaspora, we are involved in refined analysis aimed at understanding production, distribution, and use of the wide range of imported as well as local and regionally produced wares found at our sites.

The Department maintains a collections management facility which includes a combination of systematic collections from recent CRM projects in the region.  The collections are maintained in a controlled environment space-saving storage system and the materials are available for comparative study and analysis.

 Looking forward, faculty of the anthropology department are partnering with the Digital Archive of Comparative Slavery (DAACS) under a grant from the Mellon Foundation Professor Armstrong is establishing a satellite laboratory for the DAACS digital database system in the archaeology laboratories at Lyman Hall.  The lab will be fully equipped to enter archaeological data into the DAACS system and students taking archaeological material analysis classes will be introduced to this and other database systems.  Our students are already involved with DAACS and Professor Armstrong is incorporating the DAACS system into the analysis of his current research in Barbados.