• Name: Paul McLerran
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Saturday, January 20, 2007

Dig Spotlight: The Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance Project

If you are searching for a high quality learning adventure in Mesoamerican archaeology, the Belize Valley Archaeological Reconnaissance Project will likely match your expectations. Located near the picturesque little town of San Ignacio (where you will be lodging), excavations will be conducted at a site known as "Baking Pot", where much of the monumental architecture and other ancient features of a major Mayan center remain to be excavated and investigated.

Work will involve intensive stratigraphic excavations, testing of the architectural remains through trenching, and mapping the features and remains. As a participant, you will be involved in all elements of the investigations, from establishing excavation units to creation of new site maps. You will also process and document artifacts and attend lectures on the Maya civilization. Other lecture topics will include ceramic analysis, archaeological survey methods, human osteology, ancient Maya ritual, ideology, and hieroglyphic writing.

Excavations will resume in 2008, and you have the option of participating in either two- or four-week sessions, with college credit earned from the University of Mississippi.

Based on my review of the website, this project offers a big "bang for the buck" in terms of the overall experience in Mesoamerican archaeology. Go to the website and see for yourself!


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