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Volunteer Registration for August 2015 Archaeology Program II

CAMPTON HILLS, IL- Garfield Farm Museum is looking for volunteers to help with the  second archaeological research program of the summer. The hours are Wednesday thru Sunday from 8 am-4pm during the weeks of August 12th-16th and 19th-23rd. Under the direction of James R. Yingst, Director and Chief Archaeologist of Chicago-based Heartland Archaeology Research Program, and a Research Associate in Archaeology at Garfield Farm Museum, work is focused on understanding the lives of the 1830s/1840s settling farmers of Northern Illinois.

    What was trash that didn’t get hauled away in the days before garbage service, is now a valuable tool to understand how the first settler farm families lived.  Though many recovered pieces are small they come from plates, bottles, glassware, crocks, buttons whose style and many patterns give a clue to how prosperous a family might be or the fashions and tastes of an era, or even world trade as many pieces came from abroad to the heartland of the country.

    Registration is currently open. Individuals enrolling for a minimum of 40 hours receive a complete orientation, structured training involving rotation through the activities of shovel excavation, screening of excavated soil for artifact recovery, and washing of recovered artifacts. Participants who successfully complete 40 or more hours will receive certificates documenting hours of training and supervised experience in historical archaeology. Volunteers who cannot commit to 40 hours are also welcome and will receive informal orientations and participate in tasks needed during their hours of participation.

    The Garfield Farm Museum Archaeology Program accepts volunteers of ages 14-17 with written parental permission. Volunteers under 14 years old must be accompanied and supervised by a responsible adult at all times. We do not recommend participants under 8 years of age.

    The Culbertson log house/Garfield log tavern stood in the fork of the Chicago-St. Charles Road that branched northwest to Sycamore and southwest to Oregon, Illinois. Samuel Culbertson originally claimed 440 acres of land in 1835 that he improved with a log house, a well, and the cultivation of 30 acres by1841 when he sold the claim to Timothy Garfield for $650. The Garfields immediately saw a lucrative opportunity in establishing an inn to capture the business of the numerous farmers hauling wheat past their house to Chicago.

    To register as a participant, to visit the excavation site, or to financially contribute to the effort, please contact the museum at 630 584-8485, e-mail or write to PO Box 403 LaFox, IL 60147.