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MSU Archaeology Field School explores first-time dig

The MSU Archaeology Field School began its three-week session July 6. The students traveled to Bismarck to work with Paul Picha, chief archaeologist, Archaeology and Historic Preservation Division, State Historical Society of North Dakota. Picha expounded on archaeological methods and goals and exposed students to the state archaeology lab and collections that contain relevant military materials.

"The students and coordinators wish to express their thanks for the support provided by Minot State University in preparation for this field experience," said Mark Timbrook, history adjunct, author and technology and design specialist for the Office of Instructional Technology.

The team departed for Mitchell, S.D., on July 11. They resided on Dakota Wesleyan University’s campus during the excavation project at historic Fort James, which is located on property owned by the Rockport Hutterite Colony. Students received hands-on instruction in the use of various kinds of field equipment and techniques of excavation and artifact recovery, site mapping, documentation, and record keeping at the excavation site. The principal investigator for the excavation is Mike Fosha, chief archaeologist, Archaeological Research Center, South Dakota State Historical Society. Margaret Sherve, associate professor of English, and Mark Timbrook are site coordinators and instructors. Eunice Timbrook is assisting in lab operations and health and welfare on site. The MSU team returned July 23. For more information, visit www.minotstateu.edu/fort_james.