Tag Archives: excavation

Rediscovering a Forgotten Egyptian Pharaoh: A Penn Student’s Experience in the Field

Excavation site

In January, researchers from the Penn Museum made an historic discovery in Abydos, Egypt—unearthing the tomb and skeletal remains of a previously unknown pharaoh, Woseribre Senebkay, who reigned in the 17th century BCE. The finding was the culmination of work at the site that began in summer 2013 by a team led by Dr. Josef […]

Posted in Egypt, Research, Students in the Field, World | Also tagged , , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Ur Digitization Project: September 2013

A view down Straight Street (Division Street) in the 1930-31 season. UPM Archive photo 191883

Excavation of the ancient city, 1930-31 Season Spotlight on Domestic Area AH Reconstructing original house numbers and the process of their excavation One of the great accomplishments of the Ur excavation was the large extent of domestic architecture it revealed. Many early archaeological efforts focused almost exclusively on monumental structures and grandiose tombs. Woolley certainly […]

Posted in Iraq, Museum, Research | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Ur Digitization Project: June 2013

Field photo of Pit F at Ur, field season 1928-29

Artwork of the month Spotlight on museum number 31-10-1 Oil Painting of Ur It’s not often that I can discuss an oil painting that relates to the site of Ur, but this month I’m doing just that. In the 1930-31 season, the Woolleys received a distinguished artist guest, one Joseph Lindon Smith. Mr. Smith was […]

Posted in Archives, Iraq, Museum | Also tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Ur Digitization Project: February 2013

Ur excavation area EM, domestic architecture: published in UE7 1976, plate 122

Archival documents of the month Spotlight on Maps of Excavated Domestic Areas EM and AH Published in Antiquaries Journal 1927, 1931, and in Ur Excavations volume 7 My last blog post concerned the questions of the standard house in the period most revealed in Woolley’s excavations. Now I want to cover the larger concept of […]

Posted in Iraq, Museum | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Defending Cultural Heritage: Protecting Historical Valuables

The headdress of Puabi as depicted in the late 1920s.  The headdress itself represents about two kilos of gold.

Discovering unique artifacts in exotic lands has been the subject of countless explosive action films, adventure novels, and embellished storytelling, from the excavations of Heinrich Schliemann to those of Howard Carter. The human lust for treasure, especially gold, exists in the mind as a classic romantic adventure.  Thus, ancient sites across the world have been […]

Posted in Museum | Also tagged , , | 1 Response

Ur Digitization Project: November 2012

Field photo number 1617: RAF photo of the Ur ziggurat in 1930

Archival documents of the month Spotlight on Field Photo Numbers 912, 1616, 1617, and 2350) The Enormity of the Task I’ve been on the road most of this month in meetings and conferences in both London and Chicago. At these meetings I and many others involved have been promoting the Ur project and reporting on […]

Posted in Collection, Iraq, Museum | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Archaeology: Remembering the Human Element

Within the relative comfort of a 21st century museum, it is easy to forget the sacrifices, challenges, and dedication involved in the discovery of antiquities. All too frequently when we see glamorous vases, sarcophagi glistening with gold, and jewelry enlivened with lapis lazuli, we assume that these objects tell the entire glorious story of both […]

Posted in Archives, Iraq | Also tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Archaeology and Empire: The Role of The Great Powers

As a volunteer working on the Ur Digitization Project, I spent time examining and scanning a series of original letters pertaining to the 1922-1934 Ur excavation. As a whole, these historical documents are fascinating; they provide insight into not only Ur, but the political history of the 1920s in the Middle East. One particular letter […]

Posted in Iraq | Also tagged , , , | 2 Responses

Mummy of the Month: Pachamac Mummy Bale No. 26626

Starting in January of 1896, Max Uhle began his excavation of the Pachacamac cemetery in Peru. The site consisted of graves from different eras, but the best preserved layer dated from the late 6th century CE. From this site, the Museum has many objects in its collections (click here to see a few). The tombs from the 6th century layer […]

Posted in Museum | Also tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Digging at Clifford Rocks

Mulu’s philosophy on the mental state of archaeologists There are elephants outside my banda right now. I can hear them trumpeting. I also found out that the whooping noises are hyena. As the ascari (guard) walked me through the darkness, I shined my flashlight into the acacia bushes and saw the most sinister eye shine. […]

Posted in Kenya | Also tagged , , , , , | 3 Responses