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  October 12, 2004

Archaeology Expo To Feature Hands-On
Activities, Demonstrations, Talks

Preserving the past will be the focus of the 1st Annual Connecticut Archaeology Expo, on Sunday, Oct. 17, from noon to 5 p.m.

The Expo, presented by the Connecticut Museum of Natural History and Archaeology Center, the Office of State Archaeology, and the State Historic Preservation Office, will take place in Rome Commons Ballroom. Admission is $5 for non-members. Call 860.486.4460 for more information, or check the website.

"We hope everyone who is interested in our cultural heritage will come to this event and become involved in preserving our past," says Nicholas Bellantoni, State Archaeologist. "There are opportunities to learn about everything from our earliest inhabitants to present-day preservation efforts."

During the Expo, scientists, cultural resource managers, specialists, and enthusiasts from across the state will share their research and preservation work with the public. The event will also feature hands-on activities for children and families, games, demonstrations, and identification of bones and artifacts that visitors bring in.

"This major public event highlights the new initiatives by the Connecticut Archaeology Center," says Leanne Kennedy Harty, director of the archaeology center. "The participation of archaeologist s from the southern New England region is an extraordinary opportunity for the public to become acquainted with some truly remarkable individuals."

Image: Archaeologist Jim Dina

Jim Dina, an expert on primitive technology, will be one of the speakers at the Archaeology Expo on October 17. The canoe he built with reproduction s tone tools will be part of his presentation.
Photo by Jim Dina

Jim Dina, an expert on primitive technology, will present "Stone Age Carpentry," exhibiting the 12-foot dugout canoe he built with reproduction stone tools. He will help visitors use those tools, including axes, adzes, knives, saws, and drills, in some woodworking tasks.

Three noted archaeologists will give talks during the Expo.

Kenneth Feder, professor of anthropology at Central Connecticut State University, will discuss the misinterpretation and misrepresentat ion of the archaeological record in his talk: "Atlantis: Where Are You?" about the lost continent of Atlantis, often believed to have been a technologically sophisticated, militarily powerful, fabulously wealthy civilization now lost in the "mists of time."

Bruce Clouette, senior historian at the Public Archaeology Survey Team (PAST Inc.), will speak about archaeological remains and the role that industrialization played in bringing about contemporary Connecticut in his talk, "Connecticut's Industrial Heritage: 200 Years of Ingenuity, Effort, and Entrepreneurship."

Warren R. Perry, professor of anthropology and director of the Archaeology Laboratory for African and African Diaspora Studies at Central Connecticut State University, will give a talk titled "Archaeological Investigations of Captive Africans in Connecticut." He will describe new findings about African slaves in the northeast during the 18th century. Perry has led or participated in archaeological excavations including those revealing the 18th-century New York City African Burial Ground.

Staff of the UConn Co-op will be on hand to sell books, and the lecturers will sign copies of books they authored.