Monday, July 17, 2006

Fighting to save fragments of history
When wildfires put prehistoric sites at risk, archaeologists work with crews to help protect centuries of California's heritage

As nearby hillsides were covered with orange flames and thick black smoke, two archaeologists stared with wonder -- not up at the raging forest fire but down at three prehistoric stone grinding tools they had just discovered on the ground.

"Look at these artifacts -- they are as well preserved as anything you could ever find," archaeologist Richard Jenkins said as he examined a mortar stone with a perfectly rounded indentation. "This whole settlement is in great shape. It's survived for hundreds of years. Hopefully it will make it through this fire without major damage."

Good article.