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Lost Cities, Ancient Tombs by Ann Williams

November 8, 2021

This month’s National Geographic cover story that features the Nunalleq site was based on a new book by Ann Williams; Lost Cities, Ancient Tombs: 100 Discoveries That Changed the World. Ann visited Quinhagak and the Nunalleq excavation in 2015, and wrote the first National Geographic Magazine story about the site following her visit.

National Geographic Magazine has named Nunalleq one of 100 archaeological ‘wonders of the World’

November 3, 2021

In their November issue National Geographic Magazine select Nunalleq to be one among 100 archaeological discoveries that ‘have expanded our understanding of human history’. What an amazing recognition!

Nunalleq in New York Times

November 2, 2021

Nunalleq is featuring in a COP26 related article in New York Times today ‘As Earth Warms, Human History is Melting Away‘.

Nunalleq and the little Ice Age educating youtube :)

April 21, 2021

Nunalleq and the Little Ice Age is featuring in a fabulous new episode on the PSB show Eons. Enjoy!

Archaeological Institute of America Award: Outstanding Work in Digital Archaeology

January 12, 2021

Last Thursday on the AIA award ceremony, we were very proud receivers of the Outstanding Work in Digital Archaeology Award 2021 for our Educational Resource:

Nunalleq PhD-success

December 17, 2020

Our own Anna Mossolova recently passed her PhD-defence on Yup’ik mask making traditions with a well-deserved distinction. Congratulations Anna!

You can find a pdf-version of her dissertation here.

AIA Award Winners!

November 19, 2020

Some exciting news dropped in our inboxes this morning – the Nunalleq Educational Resource just won the Archaeological Institute of America’s 2021 award for Outstanding Work in Digital Archaeology!

3 Common Work Goals & How to Crush Them

The award is shared among a big team of collaborators who came together to share the story of Nunalleq and its many voices – we will be celebrating all the way from Scotland to Alaska today – Cheers everyone!

Core Team

Rick Knecht & Charlotta Hillerdal: Archaeological Directors

Warren Jones, Grace Hill & The Qanirtuuq Incorporated Village Corporation Board: Quinhagak Culture Bearers and Advisors

Alice Watterson: Creative Director, Archaeological Reconstruction Artist, Character Design, Environment and Creature Animation, Artifact Digitalization, Interface Design

John Anderson: Interface Design and Programming

Tom Paxton: Character Design and Animation

Pauline Matthews, Dora Strunk and Lonny Strunk: English to Yup’ik translations.

Crystal Carter: Youth co-ordinator


Jimmy Anaver, Alice Bailey, Pauline Beebe, Lise Bos, Crystal Carter, Joseph Carter, Willard Church, Emily Cleveland, Joshua Cleveland, Annie Don, Charlotta Hillerdal, Grace Hill, Ana Jorge, Rick Knecht, Francis Lukezic, Roy Mark, Julie Masson-MacLean, Edouard Masson-MacLean, Chuna Mcintyre, Alice Watterson, Anna Mossolova, Jonathan Lim, Rufus Rowe, John Smith, Mike Smith, Dora Strunk, Larissa Strunk, Lonny Strunk.

Thanks also to the many people who contributed their support, knowledge, feedback and faces throughout the project, this list includes members of the local community, colleagues, specialists, students, and volunteers. If we have missed out any names we apologize but know that your help was appreciated.

Jimmy Anaver, Alice Bailey, Kieran Baxter, Pauline Beebe, Ellinor Berggren, Dawn Biddison, Brendan Body, Lise Bos, Michael Broderick, Sarah Brown, Crystal Carter, Joseph Carter, Lucy Carter, Sally Carter, Ben Charles, Mary Church, Willard Church, Daniele Clementi, Annie Cleveland, Emily Cleveland, Joshua Cleveland, Aron Crowell, Neil Curtis, Angie Demma, Annie Don, Julia Farley, Patti Fredericks, Tricia Gillam, Sean Gleason, Sven Haakanson, Cheryl Heitman, Grace Hill, Diana Hunter, Joel Isaak, Warren Jones, Stephan Jones, Ana Jorge, Solveig Junglas, Eva Malvich, Melia Knecht, Erika Larsen, Paul Ledger, Jonathan Lim Soon, Amber Lincoln, Hannah Lotta, Steve Luke, Francis Lukezic, Pauline Matthews, Roy Mark, Mhairi Maxwell, Chuna Mcintyre, Drew Michael, Amanda Mina, Anna Mossolova, Carl Nicolai Jr, Chris Niskanen, Molly Odell, Lauren Phillips, Lucy Qin, Charlie Roberts, Chris Rowe, Rufus Rowe, John Rundall, Melissa Shaginoff, Monica Shah, Anna Sloan, Darryl Small Jr, John Smith, Mike Smith, Joey Sparaga, Dora Strunk, Larissa Strunk, Lonny Strunk, Larry Strunk, Robbie Strunk, Prof Chris Rowland, Sandra Toloczko, Richard Vanderhoek, the Quinhagak Dance Group and the staff at Kuinerrarmiut Elitnaurviat.

The resource was funded by The Arts and Humanities Research Council, the University of Aberdeen’s Commercialization Award, the University of Dundee, and the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art & Design 3DVisLab.

You can download the resource for free here!

Nunalleq Labrets

June 8, 2020

Rick continues his work on documenting the collection. Here you can see some of the Nunalleq labrets (lip plugs) documented in his pictures. An abundance of labrets have been found at Nunalleq, and they were made in a wide variety of different materials and styles. You can see the range of variety in the picture below,

Labrets 1

Labrets can tell you about peoples personal identity and affiliation. These wood labrets have been decorated with stylized seal faces – we believe they tell a family story. The distribution of these within the sod house complex excavated at the site suggests that they represent membership in a single clan or extended family.

Labrets 2

A conversation with Josh in the Delta Discovery

May 26, 2020

Joshua Branstetter, the man behind ‘Children of the Dig’ is interviewed in Delta Discovery about his experience in making the documentary, with contributions from his daughter, Ellie.

Rick on lockdown in Quinhagak

April 23, 2020

The Uni communications team asked for an update on the project progress – and Rick obliged. Here’s the story they wrote.

It’s been picked up by one newspaper so far (that I’m aware); the Penarth Times.

Enjoy the read!