Testing the waters

As many of our volunteers have experienced, 1/8″ screening of feature soils can be lots of fun!  It has been previously described as “pushing peanut butter”  But we have found an easier and faster way that seems to improve our recovery.  Best of all for the hot Virginia summer, it involves water!

The process involves a two bucket, dirty and clean, water screen method.  Ever water conservation-minded, we have been able to get most of our water from a dehumidifier and, if not too nasty, tarps.  This method is great as it leaves the artifacts (somewhat) clean.  We have found small pieces of ceramic, glass, lead shot, and even a glass bead.  Perhaps our new motto should be, “improvise, adapt, and overcome.”


About cartarchaeology

We are the County Archaeological Research Team, part of the Archaeology and Collections Branch, Resource Management Division, Fairfax County Park Authority. We are tasked with understanding and managing the cultural resources on Park land throughout Fairfax County.
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