Yesterday, the second day of digging, saw everyone on the Leon Levy Expedition venturing into the Pottery Compound for the first time. Every afternoon, staff and volunteers return to the field to process the day's finds. Volunteers wash the pottery and animal bones collected earlier in the day, while staff members, both field archaeologists and specialists, "read" pottery (identify and date the collected material) and the animal bones.
Several team members, Josh included, are working on publication projects. In the photograph below, Josh measures rim fractions as he begins work on the publication of Persian period Ashkelon.
The afternoon pottery session is also a time when the registrars work on recording objects, such as glass, metals, and worked bone, sent in from the field that morning. The GIS team works on preparing new top plans for each excavation area. The microarchaeology and paleobotanists can also be found working on their material.
And the pottery that has been washed and read? Well, it also gets marked. This means that every diagnostic sherd that is kept gets an identifying number written on it. This year, work in the pottery compound started with bone washing and pottery marking as the 2015 field team helped us catch up on materials processing after the abbreviated 2014 field season.
There is always something for everyone to do in the pottery compound and yesterday was no exception.