New Frontiers in Preservation
The theme for Archaeology and Historic Preservation Week
in 2004 was "New Frontiers in Preservation." As
the theme implied, the focus for the year is on what is "new"
in the preservation of our cultural heritage. Preservation
is a dynamic and constantly changing endeavor as new ideas
appear and we see our past in a different light. Buildings
built after WWII and in the early years of the 1950s are now
eligible for listing on the National and State Register of
Historic Places. Determining which of these buildings is important
is causing everyone to look at this time period from a new
Recent work at First American sites in southeastern Wisconsin have produced remarkably early dates. This work has placed Wisconsin archaeologists in the forefront of this fascinating research.
The second aspect of the theme, frontiers, covers a much
wider territory of ideas and meanings. The theme for the 2004
Archaeology and Historic Preservation Week suggests unexplored
areas of preservation. The Maritime Preservation and Archaeology
program at the Society continues to bring to the surface new
information and new ideas about the people who made their
living and sometimes died on the State’s waterways.
For many of us frontiers are geographic places, or boundaries,
the edge between two places or spaces. The three forts depicted
on the 2004 Archaeology Week poster are clear examples of this
type of frontier. The idea of frontier in this context also
suggests the movement of people and the interaction of different
people in a "new" environment. Frontiers
are places where one can move from the known to the unknown,
or from this world to another world. Frontiers are also temporal,
as we think about our lives, we constantly cross and re-cross
the frontiers from the present to the past and from the present
to the future. Frontiers involve changes in technology such
as the change from the atlatl dart to the bow and arrow, from
horses to tractors, and from log house construction to frame
buildings. Frontiers are places of adventure, excitement and
sometimes danger. And, there is seldom just one “frontier,”
but many different frontiers occupying the same space and occurring
at the same time; each evolving and changing, and each influencing
and being influenced by the other.
Join us as we explore new frontiers and enjoy the frontiers of your life.