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Architectural revelations and Yup’ik dancing

July 19, 2018

Nunalleq crew on Monaday

Half way through the third week at Nunalleq, and the excavation is progressing well. We are working on removing the last house floor in the southwestern corner of the older house. It sits straight on natural in s a shallow dug out for the room. In the central part of the house we are coming down on what is probably the last house floor as well. The eastern part of the central area is very wet, which makes it hard to excavate, but the drier parts suggest this.

Some very exciting discoveries have taken place in the ‘new house’ as well; a continuous boardwalk, and the outlines of a larger room. The two very large looters pit in this area seem to have disturbed the house less than we feared, and the architectural features meets up precisely with the previously excavated part of the house. Between the trenches we seem to have excavated most of the last house – and it seems that less than we feared has been eroded away.


The plan of the already excavated part of the house with the new discoveries penciled in by Rick

Some interesting artefacts have also been found, like this a rim sherd from a clay pot with a suspension hole; the braided grass cordage still intact. It was found in the ‘new house’ and shows one of the ways pots would have been used.

37347217_2017922618242663_3631311470567882752_nThe wet conditions of he older house makes archaeology harder, but it also means that the preservation of some artefacts are exceptional. Here Hannah found an almost complete grass sock.


In the evening we were invited to a performance by Quinhagak Dancers with the National Geographic crew, and they danced several Yup’ik songs for us. It was a very enjoyable evening.


Quinhagak Dancers being photographed on the tundra by National Geographic Erika.


Nunalleq crew and Nat Geo photographer trying to learn Yup’ik dancing (experts in front to the right)

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