AIA Toronto Society Newsletter 2.1, Fall 2016
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President's Welcome

Warmest greetings to our AIA Toronto members, both new and old, at the start of our much-anticipated new academic year 2016-17! Our talks for the upcoming year reflect the broad range of archaeological research covered by the AIA, boasting a list of esteemed speakers who will lecture on diverse topics, locations and time periods: from our very own Great Lakes region, all the way to Neolithic Georgia, through the extended Mediterranean basin covering Egypt, Greece and Etruria. These lectures will once again be held on the first floor of UofT’s Anthropology Building, courtesy of the Archaeology Centre and the generous support of Prof. Michael Chazan. All lectures are free and open to the public, and are followed by members' receptions. Please visit our website for further details.

This summer has been a particularly active season for Toronto-related archaeological activities. Please enjoy some of the selections we were able to showcase in the following pages. And let's especially not forget the upcoming, fun-filled International Archaeology Day being hosted at the Royal Ontario Museum. As an initiative of the AIA, this annual family-friendly event will take place on Sunday, October 16th, and thanks to dozens of our dedicated volunteers, last year we were voted as the best activity at the exit polls! We are hoping that, once again, our team will make the headlines, so if you are interested in volunteering, please contact our coordinator, Meg Morden ( or visit our website for more information.

Finally, the big day is ahead of us! Mark your calendars for the upcoming AIA Annual Meeting that is to take place right here in Toronto on January 5-8, 2017. This is an exceptional opportunity for us to showcase our Society's dedication to archaeology, as thousands of archaeologists from around the globe visit our doorstep. We are going to need dedicated members like you to make this event a heartwarming scene in the chilly winter, so please keep an eye out for calls for volunteers, additions to the programs, and registration details. If you don't want to miss any of our mailings and announcements, don't forget to sign up for our mailing list by writing to
With such a big year ahead, I'd like to remind you that not all parts of the world are as fortunate as our beloved city, and many misfortunes, both natural and man-made, continue to ravage, compromise, and affect both the archaeological and human environments. We are in ever-so-dire need of raising further awareness to help battle such malpractices and destructions—education, among many other things, is one of them. On behalf of the AIA Toronto, I thank each and every one of you for being such dedicated and active members in support of this concerted effort.

Prof. SeungJung Kim
Dept. of Art, University of Toronto
President, AIA Toronto Society
Celebrate International Archaeology Day with us!
On Sunday, October 16th, come on out to the Royal Ontario Museum and join the archaeological fun as we celebrate International Archaeology Day! Activities will run throughout the museum from 11:00am-4:00pm, and AIA Toronto will host interactive, family-friendly activities in the museum's Roman gallery. See you at the museum!

Want to get even more involved?
We're looking for enthusiastic volunteers to help facilitate activities throughout the day.
Sign up here or email for more information.
Save the Date!

From January 5th-8th, Toronto will host the 118th Annual Meeting of the Archaeological Institute of America! Look for volunteer opportunities to be announced very soon.
Fall 2016 Lecture Series
Tues Sept 27, 2016, 6:00-7:00 pm - Dr. Ron Leprohon, NMEC University of Toronto
"A Wall for All Seasons: The funerary chapel of Pahery at El Kab"
Anthropology Building AP130, 19 Russell Street, University of Toronto

Tues Oct 25, 2016, 6:00-7:00 pm - Dr. Stephen Batiuk, NMEC University of Toronto
"Exploring the Roots of the Vine: The History and Archaeology of the Earliest Wines"
Anthropology Building AP130, 19 Russell Street, University of Toronto

Tues Nov 22, 2016, 6:00-7:00 pm - Dr. Jacquelyn H. Clements, University of Toronto
"A Landscape of Identity: The Iconography of Autochthony in Late Fifth Century BC Athens"
Anthropology Building AP130, 19 Russell Street, University of Toronto

The 2016 Joseph and Maria Shaw Student Summer Travel Fellowship:
Reports from the Field

Heini Davis
University of Toronto
Onchestos Project, Thebes, Greece

Justin Raposo
University of Toronto
The Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project, Georgia
Heini Davis and Syena Moltaji excavating at Onchestos.

This was a year of many firsts. For one, it was the inaugural year of the University of Toronto’s involvement in the Onchestos Project, established in 2014 by Columbia University in collaboration with the Greek Archaeological Services. For me, this was my first time excavating at a Classical Greek archaeological site. Although I had previously spent some time in Greece, I, like so many who visit this charming part of the Mediterranean, was once again captivated by its people, its sights, and its shores. Alongside ‘Team Canada’s’ project director, the AIA and UofT’s very own Professor SeungJung Kim, and five eager undergraduate students, I spent a wonderful six weeks excavating under Boeotia’s blazing sun thanks to the generous support provided by the Joseph and Maria Shaw Student Summer Travel Fellowship.

An exciting contribution to the landscape of religious sanctuaries in Greece, the site of Onchestos in Thebes is home to the Sanctuary of Poseidon, the religious centre of the Boeotian confederacy. Architectural remains have been identified in two areas of the sanctuary, where the Boeotian confederacy would have met. As the Columbia team continued to excavate the areas that had been uncovered last year, Team Canada explored a different area, including areas that had been hastily dug during rescue excavations decades before. The season yielded new, fascinating material, all of which will be subject to further study within the next few field seasons.

Not only did this experience provide me with the valuable opportunity to sharpen my trowel by developing my technical field skills, but through this experience I was also able to have the pleasure of working and developing relationships with the students and faculty from Columbia University, the brilliant workmen on site, and the Theban community. I am incredibly grateful to the AIA and to Joseph and Maria Shaw for their support, and I sincerely hope that this is not the end of my Theban adventures.

For more information on UofT's involvement at Thebes, please visit the project website and blog.
GRAPE field school students on a trip to Vardzia.

The Republic of Georgia’s relationship with wine is millennia old; it is within its borders that the origins of viniculture and wine production have been traced. The Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project Excavations (GRAPE) project was established to study these origins, as well as to investigate the chronology of wine production.

Gadachrili Gora, located in the Kura Valley of southern Georgia, is a late Neolithic site associated with the Shulaveri-Shomu culture. Previous excavations had revealed the site's vertical extent and established that there were two occupational phases; our goal for the 2016 season was to reach the lowest living surface of the initial phase of occupation in different areas of the site, and to investigate potential evidence for local wine production and viniculture. This goal shaped the excavation methodology at the site, necessitating the collection of frequent soil samples for environmental analysis, and the thorough collection of pottery sherds, specifically the bases; further residue analysis of these bases could potentially reveal evidence for the storage of wine.

Several trenches were opened for the 2016 dig season. These were excavated alongside some previously established trenches in which the lowest level of occupation had yet to be uncovered. Many large, mudbrick structures were excavated throughout these trenches, and the boundaries of the site were expanded after evidence of a settlement, found to be larger than anticipated, was discovered. Throughout the course of the excavation, a large number of lithic, bone, and ceramic objects were found. Interestingly, high frequencies of faunal and botanical remains were noted, suggesting a successful agricultural settlement and supporting the notion that viniculture was possible in the region.

The 2016 excavations at Gadachrili Gora are just the beginning of what will likely become an increasingly valuable source of information, not only on the Neolithic people of the Caucasus region, but also on the origins and practices surrounding the cultivation of grapes and the production of wine.

Archaeologists in Training:
The Archaeology Centre's High School Summer Program

Katherine Patton, University of Toronto
In 2014, the Archaeology Centre at the University of Toronto received a generous grant from the J.P. Bickell Foundation to start a program in archaeology for high school students. This summer, for the second year in a row, undergraduate students from UofT’s Anthropology Department ran a week-long, hands-on archaeology camp in the first week of July for students in grades 9 to 12. Enrollment grew from eight participants in 2015 to thirteen this year. Most students came from schools in the Toronto area, but we also had students join us from as far away as Ottawa and the Windsor area.
The goal of our summer program was not only to introduce high school students to the discipline of archaeology in a university setting, but also to give UofT undergraduates a chance to mentor “near-peers” in their chosen field of study. The program was designed to introduce youth to the methods and techniques that archaeologists use to collect various types of archaeological data, and to illustrate how these data are used to learn about the past.
Students excavated a small, mock archaeological site, created by our program coordinators on the UofT grounds. Using a mock site allowed the students to learn basic excavation methods and data recording through trial and error without risking damage to the archaeological record. Following their field excavations, students then worked in the lab to clean and process the artifacts that they had uncovered.
Throughout the program, UofT faculty and graduate students provided daily workshops on specific research methods and issues in archaeology. Dr. Charly Bank from the Department of Earth Sciences and his graduate students ran an engaging workshop on how archaeologists use the information gathered from geophysical analysis to guide their excavation strategies. Archivists Karen Suurtamm and Harold Averill introduced students to the kinds of historical documents that are available to archaeologists who might be researching the history of specific parcels of land in the city of Toronto. For example, our students investigated what could be learned about the 1890 fire at University College through the use of historical maps, personal letters, newspaper articles, and photographs. Lee Maracle, an elder at First Nations House, discussed with our students the relationship that Indigenous peoples have with the land, stewardship, and the importance of appreciating and respecting different forms of knowledge. Dr. Paul Duffy spoke on the kinds of information that archaeologists get from mapping data, and Stanley Klassen from the Department of Near and Middle Eastern Civilizations ran a ceramics workshop, where students worked with ancient pottery collections. Summer program participants also got to try their hand at flintknapping with the help of Anthropology Department graduate students.
We also brought students on two field trips. At the Royal Ontario Museum, Dr. Craig Cipolla and April Hawkins showed our students beautiful and rare Ontario artifacts and reviewed how archaeologists care for and study the artifacts in their collections. Dr. Cipolla and Ms. Hawkins emphasized for us the importance of community engagement, not just in fieldwork, but also in caring for archaeological materials. Students also had the chance to tour the offices of Archaeological Services, Inc. where they learned about cultural heritage consulting in the city of Toronto.

The Archaeology Centre is excited to offer this program again in July 2017 and is keen to build enrollment. For more information on the summer program in archaeology, please contact us at

The Town of Nebo Archaeological Project 2016 Field Season

Debra Foran, Wilfrid Laurier University
The Town of Nebo Archaeological Project (TNAP) held its second excavation season this past summer, excavating the town of Nebo (or Khirbat al-Mukhayyat, as it is commonly known today) in Jordan. Located at the western edge of the Madaba plateau overlooking the Dead Sea and the Jordan Valley, the site sits atop a natural bedrock ridge and is surrounded on three sides by deep valleys, adding to its impressive landscape.
Material culture from a wide range of periods has been documented at the site, including Byzantine mosaics and churches, tombs, caves, cisterns, agricultural installations, and a well-preserved Iron Age fortification system. Previous archaeological research at Mukhayyat has generally focused on the examination and preservation of the Byzantine remains at the site. While this work has provided a significant contribution to the understanding of Byzantine culture in this region, the exclusion of earlier material has left a gap in our understanding of the occupational sequence at Mukhayyat. In 2012 the Khirbat al-Mukhayyat Project (KMAP) was conceived to address this lacuna and explore broader themes, such as pilgrimage, economy, and landscape, across multiple cultural and historical periods.
The summer of 2014 marked TNAP’s inaugural season of excavation, including the opening of three excavation fields. Field A, located on the southern slope of the site’s acropolis, consisted of a step trench that was initiated in order to expose the occupational sequence in this part of the site. Unfortunately, the discovery of several retaining walls, dating to the Byzantine period, prevented a complete exposure of the earlier strata, but we hope to return to this area in future seasons.
Field B, located on an artificial rise to the south of the acropolis, produced a number of interesting finds during the 2014 season and thus was also the focus of excavations in 2016. The presence of monumental architecture, consisting of the corner of a structure built of ashlar blocks, prompted the initial investigations in this area of the site. Although the exact dating of this building is still unclear, excavations in 2016 confirmed that the ashlar-built superstructure rests upon foundations which date to the Iron Age. The soil layers surrounding this structure, and throughout Field B, also produced some interesting finds. In 2014, more than 20 complete cooking pots dating to the Late Hellenistic period were recovered, and in 2016 over 25 more were unearthed. All of these vessels were found sitting straight up, despite the fact that some of them were placed on a rather steep slope. The soil that surrounds them contains a large amount of Iron Age pottery, suggesting that these cooking pots were intentionally buried using fill from earlier cultural levels in this area.
Field C, located to the north of the acropolis, was also the focus of excavations in 2014 and 2016. Initially, work began in the central part of Field C; however, part-way through the 2014 season, it became clear that there were no structures or clear occupational levels in this part of the site. Excavations in Field C Central did, however, produce two bedrock-cut features: a small, stepped chamber most likely used as storage, and a large, circular, plaster-lined reservoir. Excavation activity then shifted to the western edge of Field C with the hopes of exposing part of the site’s fortification system. In addition to revealing more of the defensive wall, work in this area in 2014 succeeded in uncovering a plaster-lined, stepped ritual bath (or miqveh) dated to the Late Hellenistic period. Excavations in 2016 in the area surrounding the miqveh produced a number of agricultural installations that may be associated with wine production. Our work this past season also allowed the exposure of more of the Iron Age fortification wall.
TNAP’s 2016 season was an overwhelming success and everyone was sad to see it end. However, we are all looking forward to returning for a third season in the summer of 2017 when we will, hopefully, be able to elucidate some of the lingering questions that our excavations have produced.
For more information on TNAP and to read our blog, please visit our website.

The Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project

Stephen Batiuk, University of Toronto
Andrew Graham, University of Toronto, Mississauga
Mindia Jalabadze, Georgian National Museum, Tbilisi

The spring of 2016 marked the inaugural field season of the Gadachrili Gora Regional Archaeological Project, or GRAPE. GRAPE is an international, multidisciplinary research project directed by Stephen Batiuk, Mindia Jalabadze, and Andrew Graham which seeks to investigate the emergence of Neolithic farming economies in the South Caucasus and the influence of the Near East on the development of local cultures. The excavations are sponsored by the National Wine Agency of the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Georgia, under the umbrella of a larger international project entitled “Research and Popularization of Georgian Grape and Wine Culture.” This project aims to investigate the roots of wine production in the ancient world.

The Neolithic settlements of Gadachrili Gora and Shulaveris Gora are located in the district of Marneuli, in Lower (Kvemo) Kartli province. These form a cluster of agricultural settlements populated by people of the 'Shulaveri-Shomu Tepe' culture, one of the earliest of the South Caucasus. Their material remains are today found in the territories of modern South Georgia, Northern Armenia, and Western Azerbaijan and date between 6000 and 4000 BCE. This archaeological culture is identified by its mudbrick architecture, ceramics, stone and bone tools, and advanced agriculture, with evidence suggesting the cultivation of several crops, including the possibility of the grape.

The purpose of GRAPE’s excavations is threefold: to provide a rich dataset of archaeological samples originating from the by-products of Neolithic food collection, processing, and consumption, particularly that of the grape; to preserve and conserve excavated materials for site consolidation and presentation to the public; and to provide cross-cultural educational opportunities for local Georgian and Canadian undergraduate students of archaeology.
Photo by Lisa Milosavljevic

During this year’s six-week season, eleven students from Canada (University of Toronto and Trent University) and ten students from Georgia (I. Javakhishvili Tbilisi State University) excavated 270 m2 at Gadachrili Gora, including two major phases of occupation. They also excavated a small 1x5m step trench, and a section cleaning at Shulaveris Gora which identified six layers of Neolithic occupation.  The remains uncovered included ceramic, lithic, faunal, paleobotanical, and geological materials, all from very clear anthropogenic contexts thanks to careful excavation. The study and analysis of these samples constitute the next phase of analysis, including a biomolecular investigation to be undertaken by Patrick McGovern of the University of Pennsylvania. In addition, radiocarbon analysis of palaeobotanical samples is currently being conducted in radiocarbon labs in Israel, hopefully leading to fruitful results.

In conjunction with the archaeological excavations, a program of architectural conservation activities has been initiated at Gadachrili Gora, along with the development of a plan for an “Archeological park/museum” for the preservation and presentation of the Shulaveri-Shomu culture in the region.

In addition to this summer's field work, we dedicated at least one day each weekend to tours of cultural and archaeological sites in the region. We visited major sites, including the Paleolithic site of Dmanisi and the rock-cut city of Vardzia, explored the ancient city of Tbilisi, and took a tour of the Khaketi wine region where students visited a number of Georgian wineries.

Overall, the initial season of GRAPE was a tremendous success and everyone involved was left with many new friends and a host of fantastic memories and experiences.  We look forward to a second exciting season in 2017 as part of the UofT’s Study Abroad programme at Woodsworth College. For more information on GRAPE, please visit our project website. We are also active on social media: like our  Facebook page, follow our Instagram account, read from-the-field updates on our Twitter account, watch videos on our Youtube channel, and read about our students' experiences on our blog!

Hear more about GRAPE and this year's inaugural excavations on October 25th, when Dr. Stephen Batiuk's will speak as part of this year's Lecture Series.

Uncovering the Past, Capturing the Present

Justin Jennings, Royal Ontario Museum
Photographs by Lisa Milosavljevic
The Middle Horizon (600-1000 CE) was a period of great change in the central Andes as people transformed how they interacted with each other, their fields, the dead, and the cosmos.  Our project in southern Peru studies this period and its aftershocks through the survey and excavation of a site named Quilcapampa. We have worked at the site since 2013, digging homes, tombs, and monumental architecture to better understand who lived at Quilcapampa and how they interacted with the outside world. Lisa Milosavljevic, a visual storyteller, brought her camera to capture the 2016 campaign.

In Memoriam

It is with great sadness that we report the passing of two long-time AIA Toronto Society members, Donalda Badone and Maggie Tushingham. Though not as active in recent years as they once were, both remained supportive members, and their memories will live on in the work of the Society. They will be missed.
Donalda (Donnie) Ewart Badone
Born April 17, 1928, in Toronto, Ontario.
Died July 26, 2016, in Burlington, Ontario.

Donnie was born and raised in Toronto, working at the Yorkville Branch of the Toronto Public Library as a teenager. After graduating from Oakwood Collegiate in 1945, she attended Victoria College and worked at CIBC in Toronto after completing her BA degree. Donnie met Louis Badone through a friend and the two were married in 1953. For nearly 50 years, Donnie and Louis lived in Willowdale where they raised two daughters, Ellen and Victoria.

After the tragic death of their second daughter, Victoria, in 1966 from cerebral palsy, Donnie decided to return to the University of Toronto and obtained a degree in library science as well as teacher's qualifications. She worked for many years as a school librarian at Drewry Avenue Public School in North York, helped to organize Scholastic Book Fairs, and wrote numerous reviews of children's books for library journals. In the 1970s she started a second career as a freelance journalist and published articles on topics ranging from Highland Cattle to Peruvian textiles. She later published three books: The Complete House Detective (Boston Mills Press, 1988), Dundurn Castle (Boston Mills Press, 1990), and The Time Detectives (Annick Press, 1992), an introduction to Canadian archaeology for young adults.

In 1972, Donnie and Louis decided to purchase and restore a log house near Lakefield, Ontario, and began another career as part-time farmers, raising Highland Cattle for over a decade. They travelled extensively in Peru, Senegal, and China, where Louis volunteered for Canadian Executive Services Overseas and Donnie continued her writing career, contributing letters to CBC Radio's Morningside. Donnie was also an active volunteer in many organizations, including the North York Historical Society, the Ontario Heritage Trust, the Ontario Archaeology Society, the William Morris Society of Canada, and the Royal Scottish Country Dance Society. Her spirited dedication will be missed by all.

Margaret (Maggie) Tushingham
Born March 3, 1921, in Dysart, the Kingdom of Fife, Scotland.
Died June 19, 2016, in Richmond Hill, Ontario.
Doug and Maggie Tushingham on the edge of the Wadi Ara, Transjordan in the 1960s.
Maggie got her start in archaeology when she was hired by C.T. Currelly at the Royal Ontario Museum in 1939. She went on to take part in the ROM-sponsored dig at Fort Ste Marie for three years, during which time she was instrumental in finding Cahiague near Orillia. It was at Fort Ste Marie that she met Douglas Tushingham, and the two married in 1948. Together they moved to Chicago for work at the Oriental Institute, Israel with the Albright Institute, Kingston, Ontario for Queen's University, and finally back to Toronto when Doug was appointed Chief Archaeologist at the ROM. In this capacity, he travelled extensively with Maggie by his side. 

While Doug was director of the Albright in Jerusalem, they participated in digs at the Palace of Herod near Jericho, Dibon, capital of ancient Moab, and Tel es-Sulţan, where they first worked with Kathleen Kenyon. They would go on to work with Kenyon at Jericho and Jerusalem for many years, producing many ground-breaking publications. Throughout this time, Maggie worked alongside Doug as his registrar and cataloguer of finds.

Numerous exciting projects followed throughout the 1970s and 1980s, including some of the great exhibitions at the Royal Ontario Museum; the presentation of a unique plastered skull from the Jericho excavations to the museum; the exhibition, Gold for the Gods, showcasing pre-Inca and Inca gold objects; and a unique and unprecedented invitation to catalogue the Crown Jewels of Iran, for which they were awarded gold medals by the Shah. The subsequent book was awarded a prize at the Basel Book Fair in 1969.

Maggie and Doug spent their later years travelling and publishing the material they had excavated and collected for the museum. Following Doug’s death in 2002, Maggie lived with her daughter Margot in Richmond Hill. Maggie was always full of enthusiasm for life and the life that she had certainly lived to the fullest.
Copyright © 2016 Toronto AIA, All rights reserved.

Managing Editor: Rachel Dewan

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