Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Mitigation that works

We were finally able to do some cool mitigation!  Normally, when SHPO determines that some project will affect another, the trade-off generally is limited (emphasis on limited) testing of a really cool site.  Or worse, they require you do write a historical report that will be read by all of three people and then get buried on some shelf.  Well, finally we did project that was off the beaten path (so to speak).  We worked in an old coal mining town (Winter Quarters, UT) that had a terrible mining disaster in 1900.  At the time, it was the worst mining disaster in history and continues today in the top five worst in U.S. History.  In one fire, 200 men and boys died in the mine and it essentially ended the town.  practically every family was affected.

We wanted to do an interpretive sign for mitigation, but SHPO wanted a historic report - Blah!  So, we wrote a sweet book.  It's small.  Only about 40 pages or so, but contains pictures from the town.  We found pictures in private and public collections, looked at journals, talked to descendants, etc, etc, etc.  Finally, after two years we are officially done.  The book is in publication right now.  Debbie did the writing and I stupervised as much as possible (like any good boss should).

My hope is that we can move on from nasty grey literature that never gets read to something cool, like a website, book, or interactive project for future mitigation.  It's small, but it's a step in the right direction.  You know, "one small step for an archaeologist, one giant leap for archaeology."

1 comment:

  1. Steps in the right direction are good, even if you feel they are small. Sooner or later they get you were you want to go.