Volunteers are being sought to help excavate at Wiawaka Holiday House at the southern end of Lake George to help document the early years of the Holiday House by looking at the materials the visitors, staff, and organizers left behind. Wiawaka Holiday House was founded in 1903 to provide affordable vacations for the working women in the factories of Troy and Cohoes, New York. The work is being directed by Megan Springate, a PhD candidate at the University of Maryland working on her dissertation looking at the intersections of class and gender in the early twentieth century.
No previous archaeological experience is necessary. Participants will learn archaeological techniques hands-on at the site. All equipment will be provided. Accommodation and meals are available at Wiawaka Holiday House for a fee.* There is no charge to volunteer. Those without previous archaeological experience are asked to volunteer for three or more days. You must be 18 years of age or older. Excavation Dates: Monday to Friday, June 16 through July 11, 2014.
What can you expect?
This summer, crews will be excavating in three areas of the site to document the experiences of visitors, summer staff, and of the year-round caretakers.Excavation involves the following physical activities: shoveling, crouching or kneeling on the ground, lifting buckets of dirt to pour into a screen, shaking the screen to separate artifacts from the soil, and filling the hole back in once all the information has been recovered. Crews will spend eight hours per day Monday through Friday excavating, taking one hour for lunch. Instruction will include archaeological methods, note taking, and basic artifact identification and interpretation. Rain day volunteers are more than welcome to help process artifacts in the lab. Participants can either purchase lunch at Wiawaka or pack a lunch to eat on-site.* There is no smoking permitted anywhere on Wiawaka property.
* Volunteers are welcome to stay overnight at Wiawaka for $75 per night prior to June 19. Meals are available only after June 23rd. After June 23rd, the room rate per person is $110 weekdays and $125 weekends, including meals. Volunteers who wish to purchase meals onsite after June 23rd may do so: $8 for breakfast, $12 for lunch, $16 for dinner.
Photo: Excavating at Wiawaka in 2012.