Introductions

Archeology is not just digging up the past. It is also an attempt to understand the past in a way that helps us better plan for the future.

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Quote from Dr. Stevenson:

“This year was just the kick-off to the project and a familiarization with what the archaeological record was like. On a general level we knew what the surface features were (alignments, cairns, houses) but we did not have information on the condition, structure, and variation in those features. Terraces for example come in a wide variety of sizes and locations. We were also not aware of what types of features were very recent, Colonial, or pre- Colonial and we found some of each. So, this year’s work will help us reshape our research questions once we understand what is out there. For example we might ask why Guanache sites are not found on the valley flow and are on hilltops and upper terraces."

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"The immediate goal is to survey one entire side of the valley. We want to link the agricultural features with the human presence in the valley and try to understand how many people were there, what were their work roles in terms of agricultural production, and how were they linked together. The people in the valley were not independent producers but were tied to a Colonial landlord. In a nutshell we want to get at the social organization of production. With an idea of how that works, we then move on to looking at agricultural strategies. We will ask the questions: How was water diverted and conserved? Why were some areas terraced and others not? How were nutrients in the agricultural fields sustained over time so that the farming was sustainable (or not)? So we will power on over the next few years with these questions in mind.”

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