Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Day 26: Maps, Records, and Buttons! Oh My!

The field school was split up into two groups again today, except the lab kids from yesterday were in the field, and the fieldlings were in the lab.

Sean, Brittany, and Sonya were out in the field surveying a bike trail that was never surveyed by Bob before. The bike trails often seem to go through trails that had already been formed, so it is possible that the bike trail that this group was going through had once been used for access to the cabin. Tomorrow we will hopefully have an update of what, if anything, they found in the area.

Most of the other students were in the lab, where two very exciting things happened. First, we received an exiting package in the mail from Steve Carter on behalf of Carhartt! Carhartt manufactured work gear and garments (eg: overalls) and the people who used the products were often in the logging, railroad, mining, and agriculture industries. The package contained lots of goodies, including the work bibs/handkerchiefs that Nadia, Anja, Paul, and Suzannah are modeling for us in the picture below.

On Day 11 of the field school we had found a Carhartt button (click here for the picture of our button), and Andrea was doing research and ended up emailing Steve for some information, and boy did he help narrow down a time period for us. This particular style of button had a patent on it in 1913, and was used until 1932 for bibs! Below are pictures of the two kinds of buttons that he had sent us.

We did not find the heart shaped button (pictured below) on the site, however, now we have an untarnished version to compare to if we do find one. This button was used for jackets and coats from 1900 until 1930.

Steve also included the Carhartt Universal Account Book for Farmers booklet (pictured below). The booklet was interesting to go through because it included some information on the history of Carhartts, and the promise from the President to his customers to continue to provide quality products. Thanks Steve for all of your help!

The second exciting thing to have happen today revolved around the vinyl record that Max had found yesterday. Our dear Suzannah contacted her father (Roy) who works in the music industry and is very keen on solving mysteries such as ours: Who manufactured the record? What kind of music was on it? When was it produced?

Roy told us that in order for us to find out this information we must have the "record number" and the "matrix number", which are usually found on the deadwax of the record (the rim). We looked at the deadwax and found the record number embossed in it, however we could not find the matrix number.

By using the record number we had found, Roy found a matching album that had the same record number. It was on a DECCA label by the artist "Roman GOSZ and his Orchestra"! Side A had the "Brokenheart Polka" on it, and Side B had "Autumn Rose Laenver" on it, and it was recorded in 1939. We cannot confirm that this is the exact same record, without the matrix number, however this is very very intriguing and fantastic news because of the possible lead Roy provided.

Suzannah will be heading back with Max tomorrow to the area where he found the record, hopefully to find the missing pieces and therefore more diagnostic information.

There were other things going on in the lab today too. Bora (pictured below) was given the task of gluing broken bottles together. It was a very frustrating puzzle, but Bora is very good at it!

Spencer (pictured below) worked with his handy assistant Simon today (the second picture below) on the acid baths used to scrub away all of that pesky rust. It was just as successful as yesterday, and we are very happy that this method of Spencer's works! He was given the idea to use the gentle citric acid bath from a bunch of beer can collectors who work with cans that are closer to pristine than our cans.

Finally, most everyone else worked on their projects, like Anja (pictured below), or Verena who continued her detailed drawings, and Andrea who worked on her fantastic photographs.

If the students weren't working on the projects, or helping others, they were working on filling out their Archaeological Site Inventory Form for the Martin/McKay site assignment from Monday, or on Tuesdays assignment of drawing maps. (Pictured below is Max checking out his map)

A quick sketch of "the point" site where team Super-fantastic worked yesterday is pictured below. They did the sketch because they wanted to get a good idea of where the objects were located in relation to others, before drawing it to scale.

Thursday will be another day in the lab! More to come!

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