Today, we worked in the outbuilding yard, where many buildings such as kitchens, slave houses, ice house, wash house, and a smoke house were located.
Before we started the dig, we learned about archaeology. We learned that archaeologists dig to find things from a long time ago to learn about people in the past. Also that artifacts are things that were made or used by people. We also learned that it is very important to know where we find the artifacts to learn about the past. Archaeology sites can be destroyed very easily, so we should always work with an archaeologist when digging them
During the dig, we worked with Jay, Lori, and Diane. They taught us how to dig with a trowel, keep the layers of soil separate, sift the dirt, and find artifacts.
We found old nails, window glass, pieces of ceramic dishes, bottle glass, animal bone, bricks, coal, and chert flakes. Some of the most interesting artifacts that we found were a spear point, pig tooth, and part of a smoking pipe.
Based on these artifacts, we learned that the buildings in this area were made of wood and brick. Some of them had windows and were used as a place where people lived or cooked food, such as slave houses and a kitchen. Some were places were people worked, such as the smoke house. Based on the pieces of chert and fire cracked rock found, we know that Native Americans lived and made tools here at Riverside thousands of years ago.
Finally we learned that archaeologists only spend a small amount of time digging. They spend most of their time cleaning, studying, and cataloging the artifacts and sharing what they learned with others.