Tequesta Village, Giza Vandals, and America Unearthed. Weekly Round Up 2/21/14

Yesterday was my mother’s birthday. I don’t think she reads my blog, but Happy Birthday none – the – less!

A lot had happens in the past week! In the news mostly, but still, it’s made for fun and interesting reading. The most entertaining of which has been the ongoing comedy that is the vandalism of the Giza Pyramid. Not that the vandalism is itself funny, no, that’s awful. However, the slowly unfolding story about why the vandalism occurred is becoming a comedy of errors. Also, the press can’t decide if the vandals were trying to prove Atlantis or Aliens. I’m going to let you read these two articles yourself, because there is bigger news to discuss.

The Giza Necropolis image vis Wikicommons
The Giza Necropolis image vis Wikicommons


Giza pyramid vandalized to prove ‘alien theory’

German conspiracy theorists vandalize Great Pyramid to prove it was built by Atlantis

Many of you might know that there was a Tequesta village site found recently in Miami, Florida. This site is now considered one of the most significant Native American sites in the world and it’s proponents are working to get it recognized as a national heritage site. This of course is severely irritating the construction company that paid for the dig, because they just wanted someone to officially tell them they could build their repetitive hotel/movie theater there. Fortunately, the CRM firm working on this site won’t give in that easy, and they’ve in the big guns to help save this site. Good luck to them.

The middle of downtown Miami, archaeologists excavate a site holding evidence of a more than 1,000-year-old Tequesta Indian village. Image via NPR.

Miami historic preservation board moves to protect Tequesta site

This article gives a good account of what’s been going on so far at the site. It also includes how the public is raving to the find. I like this quote the best:

The testimony from 11-year-old Bella Greenberg, a student at Miami Country Day School, may have best captured the prevailing sentiment over preservation of the eight circles and other features at the site.

“Really, a hotel?’’ Geenberg said. “What’s more important? You’re cheating a generation by cheating us of our history. Please don’t destroy them just to see a movie or stay in a fancy hotel.’’

Another good quote which is very telling of shady nature of the development firm involved:

Board member Jorge Kuperman challenged MDM’s claims of financial hardship, nothing the developers were aware from the beginning that they were buying property in a designated archaeological zone, took a “calculated risk,’’ and now should be responsible for safeguarding the archaeological finds.

“MDM knew precisely what they were buying into,’’ he said.

Fox News, of course, took a slightly different view of things. Still, they gave a great look onto the minds of the developers.

I’m not sure if Fox is trying to help Stearns it here, or if they want him to look bad, but these were maybe not the best quotes to try and win a case with:

“Let’s be honest with each other,” said Eugene Stearns, the attorney representing MDM Development Group, which owns the property and is eager to move forward with construction. “Every great city is built on the shards of a former great city.”

MDM has spent $3 million conducting an archaeological review and is now anxious to continue construction. Stearn said all of the planned commercial space has been leased and half of the residential units have been sold.

“There are enormous financial obligations and commitments that have to be met,” he said. “And they need to go forward.”

Stearn obviously has never had to fight for his own cultural heritage before. And we are to judge him solely on theses quotes, he’s Moore’s concerned about getting paid than he it’s about doing the right thing. This could just be a result of Fox’s stellar reporting style though and not the man’s real objective.

Also, I’ve begun watching a new TV series. Well, it’s in it’s second season, but it’s already as bad as Ancient Aliens. You may have seen it already:

It’s…something…and I have a hard time watching it all the way through.

Recently though, I watched an episode with Tim Baumann in it, and well, it made it a little funny for me. Dr. Baumann taught at my field school last summer so I know the guy a little. I also know that he does not support the Bat Creek Stone as being “authentic”. You could tell from the video that he was kinda angry at the guy interviewing him, so I’m trying to reach out to Dr. Baumann to see if he’s like to give a response to the episode. So keep an eye here for more on the Bat Creek Stone.

Lastly, but not leastly, the #AchaeologyChat(s) are back on Twitter! Yay! If you’re a little behind you can catch up on the ones I managed to put on Storify, and read the latest one, where we discuss Looting among other things.

First ever #ArchaeologyChat!

#ArchaeologyChat for 11/20/2013

#ArchaeologyChat for 2/20/14: What Can Archaeologists do to prevent looting?


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