King Salmon

A King Salmon caught next to a 1500 year old village on the Alaska Peninsula. I let it go after the photo, but the fish provided a tangible link to the experiences of the people who lived at this site during the past.

I am a college professor and an archaeologist. I teach at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota. I have been doing fieldwork for around thirty years – mostly in Alaska and the Midwestern United States. I have a variety of interests from experimental archaeology to public archaeology. Much of my Alaskan research has focused on the evolution of social organization and complex hunter-gatherers. I primarily use a household archaeology approach, which I feel gives me great insight into how people lived in the past. The Alaska sites I work on usually produce an extraordinarily well-preserved collection of artifacts including stone tools, ivory carvings, bone sewing needles, and an abundance of faunal remains (bones and shell from ancient meals).

My Midwestern research has covered everything from 20th Century backyard sites on my University campus to a short-lived 19th Century lighthouse in Wisconsin. Through these different projects I have been exploring questions about place-making and micro-history through neighborhood archaeology, and consumerism and survival for people living on the rocky shores of Lake Michigan.

For a variety of reasons my blogging has been limited over the last several years. I think that this format can be an invaluable outlet for discussing our discoveries and thoughts. I intend to make a more concerted effort at blogging and hope my readers find some interesting materials.

–Brian (March 2016)

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