Volunteers Invited To Join Public Archeology Project At Manzanar, May 27 To 31

NPS staff and volunteers excavate Block 14.
(click above to view larger image)
Photo: Bob Mansfield/National Park Service

The following is a press release from the National Park Service.

INDEPENDENCE, CA — Manzanar National Historic Site’s award-winning public archeology program provides exceptional opportunities to learn about the past and help preserve the site and its stories for the future. From May 27 to 31, 2016, volunteers have the unique opportunity to assist the National Park Service (NPS) in uncovering and stabilizing features in Block 14 and potentially adjacent blocks.

Block 14 is Manzanar’s “demonstration block,” where visitors can explore a typical residential block, including two reconstructed barracks and a restored World War II-era mess hall.

Working alongside NPS staff, volunteers will assist in excavating one or more barracks basements, restoring rock alignments, repairing concrete features, clearing small brush and weeds, and removing stumps and fallen trees.

All restoration work will be guided by archeological evidence and historic photographs. One of the basements to be excavated this year was discovered and partially excavated during last summer’s volunteer project. Surface evidence suggests many other basements in Block 14.

Volunteer positions are available to anyone age 15 and over who is physically able to work outdoors in moderately strenuous activities. Volunteers will be digging with shovels and small hand tools, cutting and loading brush, using wheelbarrows, mixing concrete, screening sediments to retrieve artifacts, and taking notes and photographs.

Depending on the number of artifacts recovered, volunteers may also assist in cleaning and recording artifacts. Most of the work is physically demanding, but there are usually a variety of tasks each day, to suit different interests and energy levels.

Previous archeological experience is helpful, but not necessary. All volunteers need is an interest in history and a willingness to get dirty!

The work will be conducted outdoors, regardless of weather, from 7:30 AM to 3:30 PM daily, including weekends. Meet (and park) on the north side of the Manzanar auditorium/visitor center. Volunteers may work any number of days or hours, but a full day or multiple days are preferred. Bring water, lunch, work gloves, and personal medications (including an EpiPen® if you have been prescribed one). Wear sunscreen, a hat, and sturdy boots.

The project can accommodate up to 15 volunteers per day. Advance sign-up is required. Contact Cultural Resources Manager Jeff Burton at (760) 878-2194. extension 3305, or send e-mail to jeff_burton@nps.gov.

Manzanar National Historic Site is located is located at 5001 Highway 395, six miles south of Independence, California (see map below). Learn more on our web site at http://www.nps.gov/manz or Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ManzanarNationalHistoricSite, or call (760) 878-2194, extension 3310.

= NPS =

Manzanar National Historic Site via Google Maps

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