|Fort Defiance Interpretive Center|
We timed our visit perfectly: the new Fort Defiance Interpretive Center had just opened a few weeks previously and we were able to enjoy the exhibits, talk to a local guide, and take a stroll along one of the many the newly paved walking trails. There are only embankments and depressions in the ground where the fort once stood but it's still interesting to view these sites and imagine the existence of a very different town than the one we're just getting to know.
Just over a year ago at this time, I was working at another historical site - uncovering the remains of a Roman settlement in Wiesbaden, Germany. I've always been fascinated by archaeology and was glad to get the experience, uncovering several examples of Roman metalwork and pottery, and even a few older, Iron Age finds during my weeks on the dig. I learned a lot about the practical business of archaeology and preservation, but also got a taste of how personal and rewarding the work can be.
It's much more physically demanding and less glamorous than Indiana Jones would have you believe (what...no golden chalices or high-speed chases in cars, boats and planes?), but there's nothing quite like the knowledge that the piece of pottery you're holding was last touched, centuries earlier, by Roman hands.
|German archaeologist Christian with one of our finds - how beautiful!|
I've been looking for more volunteer opportunities ever since and hope to find something during our time in the TN/KY area. The archaeological community seems a little hard to break into, but I'm hoping that with diligent research and an ample helping of enthusiasm, I'll be able to find a way. Of course, even if nothing turns up, Matt and I will still keep exploring and learning from others who are digging up the past.