Wet landscapes have figured significantly in the development of human societies and in the lives of many people through the ages. The water-saturated, low-oxygen conditions in these sites help preserve wood and other plant remains for thousands of years, thus saving fragile material evidence that would otherwise be absent from the archaeological record.
Hidden Dimensions is a collection of essays drawn from papers presented at an international conference in Vancouver, British Columbia in April 1995. Scholars from around the globe examine several aspects of wetland archaeology in North America, Mexico, Europe, eastern Siberia, and New Zealand. Some of the essays in this volume explore environmental and historical contexts of wet-sites as well as past human adaptation to wetland environments. Others concentrate on the contributions of wetland archaeology to reconstructions of cultural history and the interpretation of unique perishable materials. In addition to discussions on the dynamic nature of wetlands and concern about the future of the cultural resources they contain, the authors look at practical issues of land management and object conservation.
In Hidden Dimensions the authors seek to raise awareness of the significance of wetland archaeology issues at a time when wetlands around the globe are rapidly shrinking and their cultural contents are at risk of disappearing.
It is not possible in this brief review to do justice to all the fine papers in this volume ... From beginning to end, the papers in Hidden Dimensions are of uniformly high quality. The volume as a whole does an excellent job of conveying the wide range and incredible richness of archaeological resources preserved in wetland environments.
This excellent book is one of a growing number of publications that highlight the tremendously diverse nature of materials surviving in water-saturated sites that allow people in many disciplines to interpret human activities in and physical characteristics of past environments ... The book is well edited and provides clear and useful illustrations. I highly recommend this volume to all archaeologists who plan to use an interdisciplinary approach when they excavate, especially those who do not mind getting their feet wet.
... attractive and well finished ...World-wide in scope and highly varied in its content, Bernick's book brings to the reader a sense of the importance and potential of wet site archaeology.
Preface and Acknowledgments
Introduction / Kathryn Bernick
Part 1: Wetland World-Views
Wetland Worlds and the Past Preserved / J.M. Coles
Prehistoric Wetland Sites in Sweden / Lars Larsson
Wetland Archaeological Sites in Aotearoa (New Zealand) Prehistory / Cathryn Barr
Wetlands-Associated Sites on the Russian Far East: A Review of Environment, Chronology, and Paleoeconomy / Yaroslav V. Kuzmin
Wetlands and Hunter-Gatherer Land Use in North America / George P. Nicholas
Part 2: Wet-Site Perspectives, Past and Present
The Importance of the Biskupin Wet Site for Twentieth-Century Polish Archaeology / Wojciech Piotrowski
Ancient Maya Use of Wetlands in Northern Quintana Roo, Mexico / Scott L. Fedick
The Death of the Wildwood and the Birth of Woodmanship in Southeast England / D.M. Goodburn
Stylistic Characteristics of Basketry from Coast Salish Area Wet Sites / Kathryn Bernick
The Boston Back Bay Fish Weirs / Elena B. Décima and Dena F. Dincauze
Part 3: Fishing Technologies on the Northwest Coast
A Comparative Chronology of Northwest Coast Fishing Features / Madonna L. Moss and Jon M. Erlandson
Fishing Weirs in Oregon Coast Estuaries / Scott Byram
Wet-Site Contributions to Developmental Models of Fraser River Fishing Technology / Ann Stevenson
The Montana Creek Fish Trap I: Archaeological Investigations in Southeast Alaska / Robert C. Betts
The Montana Creek Fish Trap II: Stratigraphic Interpretation in the Context of Southeast Alaska Geomorphology / Greg Chaney
Part 4: Preservation and Conservation in Practice
Essex Fish Traps and Fisheries: An Integrated Approach to Survey, Recording, and Management / Paul J. Gilman
The Humber Wetlands Survey: An Integrated Approach to Wetland Research and Management / Robert Van de Noort
The Role of Monitoring in the Assessment and Management of Archaeological Sites / Mike Corfield
Observations Resulting from Treatment of Waterlogged Bowls in Aotearoa, New Zealand / Dilys A. Johns
Supercritical Drying of Waterlogged Archaeological Wood / Barry Kaye and David J. Cole-Hamilton
Footing the Bill: Conservation Costs in the Private Sector / Katherine Singley
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