AMERICAN NORTHWEST PREHISTORY
Contribution of Understanding Northwest Prehistory and Augmenting Ongoing Research
We feel that a comprehensive photographic record will enhance the records of Cressman and the Lorings. Their published records consist of descriptions and line drawings of many sites. We have discovered that there are images that seemingly were not recorded in their records. Additionally, that at least in several cases, their drawing may mislead the observer as to the form of the actual image. This is due in some cases to the inability of their drawings to differentiate distinctly different layers of images on a particular surface. Through field observation and notes and photographic verification we hope that our study will aid future observers in ascertaining a more accurate view of the actual images.
Our research will also take note of the conditions prevailing at the sites we visit: noting such things as the various degrees of repatination, lichen growth, spalling, calcification, vandalism, etc. and how that might affect future study. Variances from Lorings’ observations will be particularly noted.
In 2011 we will continue to attempt to visit sites that we have not yet visited. With the help of Lorings’ original field notes, Google Earth maps, hand held GPS system and our growing familiarity with the territory, we feel confident of accomplishing those goals.
I will continue working on the creation of comprehensive maps of rock art locations that will greatly aid future legitimate explorers, conservators and stewards. The fact that such maps would be available through a reliable "firewall", i.e. the OAS, will aid in the protection of the sites. I will continue to work with the Google Earth software that will facilitate higher print quality and richer annotations to the maps we create. I will continue expanding my skills with the hand held GPS unit so that our explorations may be better documented and presented on maps. I will also continue to search for software that will simplify the process of transcribing photographic images to line drawings of images; there is a great program for doing this to pictographs, I will continue to search for programs and processes that will commensurately do that to petroglyphs. By using the tools available in Google’s Picasa program we have been able to greatly enhance the visibility of many of the images in the photographs we take. LeeAnn has devised a protocol that allows one to greatly increase the visibility of heavily repatinated petroglyphs.
As we continue to refine our use of that program, our photographic records increase their value in contributing to the body of knowledge. I continue to work with various programs in my quest to make 3-D perspectives of rock art sites available for public viewing and enhancement of future research.
Our efforts have brought us into contact with a number of individuals who have knowledge of many Oregon rock art sites that were not recorded by the Lorings. We are actively pursuing those relationships and adding sites thus acquired to our records. In addition, during our Rock Art Recording Expeditions and Excursions, we have already discovered a number of sites and parts of sites that were apparently undiscovered by the Lorings. In our estimation and experience there are at least one hundred sites where rock art exists in Oregon that were not included in the Loring survey. It is our goal to visit as many of those sites as we can discover and record them photographically so that they become part of the archaeological record.
The area of our concentration in these efforts again this year will be the Lake County area that is on the northern boundary of the Great Basin tradition. As resources and time become available, we will continue our exploration of the Owyhee River drainage including parts in Idaho. While other areas of this region are more familiar (the Coso Range, for instance), the amount and complexity in the Lake County area rival any in the world. In the wildest of imaginings, our documentary efforts might lead to the establishment in the area of a world heritage site.
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