Archives—December 2015

Industrial Archaeology Summer 2015 Field School: Isle Royale

IsleRoyaleThe Industrial Archaeology Summer 2015 Field School participated in excavation work at the Ransom Smelter on Isle Royale National Park.  Their work was captured in the production titled  Beneath the Wilderness: Revisiting Isle Royale’s Industrial Past from Ravenswood Media.

Video SummarySeth DePasqual, Cultural Resources Manager National Park Service, partners with a team of industrial archeologists from Michigan Technological University to uncover a 19th century smelter on Isle Royale National Park. Known primarily as a wilderness area, Isle Royale was, for a short time, the center of copper mining in the United States. The National Park Service provides the student archeologists with a valuable experience in industrial archeology while gathering important information for park visitors about the island’s gritty industrial past.







New Professor

WurstLouAnn Wurst joins the Department of Social Sciences as a professor. Before coming to Michigan Tech, Wurst was at Western Michigan University. Wurst received a PhD in Anthropology from Binghamton University and a Master’s in Anthropology from State University of New York at Binghamton.

Her research interests include historical archaeology, issues of class and ideology, and heritage and cultural resource management. She has also had archaeological experience as the principal investigator at the Coalwood Archaeology Project in Hiawatha National Forest,and the Apple Island Archaeology Project in Orchard Lake, Mich.

Read more at Tech Today.


New Assistant Professor

SFScarlettSarah Scarlett joins the Department of Social Sciences as an assistant professor. Prior to this position, Scarlett was a lecturer and Chipstone Foundation Post-Doctoral Fellow in the Department of Visual and Performing Arts here at Michigan Tech. Scarlett received a PhD in the Department of Art History, Buildings-Landscapes-Cultures program at University of Wisconsin-Madison. She received her Master’s in American Material Culture from the University of Delaware.

She has been published The Journal of Modern Craft. She has also worked at the National Building Museum in Washington, D.C.

Read more at Tech Today.


Gohman Publishes “The Cliff: America’s First Copper Mine: Revisted”

Gohman1Sean Gohman, PhD Candidate, Industrial Heritage and Archaeology, had the pleasure of working with the Quincy Mine Hoist Association this past year to publish an updated edition of Don Chaput’s The Cliff: America’s First Great Copper Mine. First published in 1971, the book had been out of print for decades, and the Hoist Assoc. took on the rights and asked Gohman to add some new material in order to make the book more than just a history book, but instead to promote Copper Country heritage (such as the site’s history from c.1900 to the present, site mapping, landscape evolution, archaeology, and environmental remediation at the site). It’s put together to be ‘2 books in 1’, with Chaput’s original material followed by Gohman’s (formatted as closely as he could to the original). Gohman feels the new edition is now more than just a local history book.

The soft-cover version just came out a few weeks ago and is available pretty much wherever books are sold locally (hard covers arriving in shops shortly).  It is also available at the Quincy Mine Hoist Association website.


SS Department Presence at American Anthropological Association Meetings

logoMichigan Tech had a presence at the American Anthropological Association meetings in Denver, Nov. 18-22, where several faculty and graduate students organized panels and presented papers.

Valoree Gagnon co-organized and led a roundtable for the Association for Anthropology of Policy “‘Studying Through’ in Anthropology: Tips, Tools and Strategies for Emerging Policy Scholars.”

Melissa Baird (SS) and Brendan Pelto co-organized a  panel, “Critical Heritage Landscapes,” where Baird was a discussant and Pelto presented a paper “Negotiating Heritage on a Resource Frontier.” 

Sara Thiam presented a paper “Shocking Global Audiences: Exposing Suffering and Eliciting Compassion for the Taalibe Children of Senegal” and a paper “A Tale of Two NGO Discourses: Stories of Suffering Qur’anic School Children in Senegal” at the preceding AAA interest group conference in Denver, “NGO-graphies.”  

Carol MacLennan (SS) also presented a paper “Can Superfund Protect Mining Communities from Historic Toxic Waste?”

From Tech Today