A Real Archaeology Dig

(My friend April and I spent a June weekend exploring central and western Kansas. This post is a story from our trip.)

Council Grove was our final destination. We didn’t have big goals for the historic Flint Hills town 100 miles short of home, but it was the logical place to stop for lunch. Real life had begun to exert pressure on us both, so we figured we’d make a brief stop and be on our way as soon as possible.

On our way down Main Street, we saw this:

KAA overview
“Is that an archaeological dig?”

They were happy to give us a tour.

The Kansas Anthropological Association is a crew of volunteers who work under the direction of the Kansas State Historical Society. When the Historical Society adopts a new historic site, the KAA excavates to learn more about its history.

KAA sieve
Volunteers send clay soil through the sieve in search of artifacts.
KAA pottery shard
A pottery shard is unearthed bit by bit.
KAA Pottery detail
Pottery detail

The Last Chance Store dates back to 1857, when it provided supplies to travelers on the Santa Fe Trail. The building has served many purposes since then, and undergone several structural changes. Every little artifact will help to tell its story.

(You can find more pictures of the Last Chance Store dig here.)

KAA Last Chance Store
Last Chance Store, Council Grove

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