News / Events

Hein Bjerk – Post-Glacial Colonization of Scandinavia

Hein B. Bjerck, Professor in Archaeology at Norwegian University of Science and Technology will be giving a lecture “The Colonization of Scandinavian Seascapes in the Pleistocene/Holocene Transition”.


An exciting and important subject for study here on the Northwest Coast is how and when the “first” people arrived, particularly at the end of the last Ice Age.  In order to understand this, it is necessary to understand the local sea-level histories and paleo-environments.  Continue reading Hein Bjerk – Post-Glacial Colonization of Scandinavia

Andreas Fuls – A short history of Mayan astronomy

Tuesday, March 18th, 7:30 p.m., at the University of Victoria, next ASBC talk:

A short history of Mayan astronomy: The Mayan calendar and the collapse of the Classic Mayan culture by Dr. Andreas Fuls, Berlin Institute of Technology, Germany

The Classic Mayan developed a sophisticated calendar and observed the Sun, Moon, planets and stars. Precise astronomical data allow correlation of the Mayan calendar to the Christian calendar. A new chronology is proposed and verified by different dating methods and data, which also results in a discussion of the so-called “Mayan collapse”. Continue reading Andreas Fuls – A short history of Mayan astronomy

They didn’t do it just for the Halibut: A faunal analysis of the Hiikwis site complex (DfSh-15 & DfSh-16), Barkley Sound.

Presented by Nicole Westre.


The Hiikwis site complex (DfSh-15 and DfSh-16) consists of two village sites in inner Barkley Sound, occupied continuously for nearly 3000 years until the 1900s. Excavated between 2008 and 2010, the site complex has gained attention as the only Barkley Sound village site to contain a significant flaked stone assemblage in late contexts. My talk, however, focuses on sampled vertebrate faunal remains recovered from the site, which are unique among Barkley Sound sites as well. The bird and whale assemblages will be discussed, as will salmon exploitation. In general, Barkley Sound sites suggest that salmon did not become an important resource in the area until only about 800 years ago. This observation challenges the idea that complex Northwest Coast societies emerged as a result of salmon preservation for winter consumption as long as 3500 years ago. Does the Hiikwis site complex follow the typical Barkley Sound pattern, or do the bones tell a different story?

Nicole is currently completing a Master’s degree in Anthropology at the University of Victoria, focusing on faunal analysis. She received her BA in Anthropology from Vancouver Island University in 2010. She volunteers weekly in the Royal BC Museum’s comparative faunal collection and has conducted field work in Barkley Sound, Nanoose Bay, and on the island of Menorca, Spain.

January 21, 2014 new talk “A Trail of Empties” by Tom Bown, at our new location at UVic

In association with the Anthropology Department of UVic

Tuesday, January 21, 2014, 7:30 pm
Cornett Building B129, University of Victoria

A Trail of Empties

A talk by Tom Bown

Global expansion from the 17th century on could likely be studied just by the trail of bottles left behind. Fortunately glass preserves well and, based on the style and method of manufacture, can offer some very precise dating tools. In an archeological context glass fragments are often the first indication of contact or trade with the outside world. They can also offer information about a site and the people who lived there. During the talk I will offer an overview of how to identify and date glass bottles along with some “hands on” examples.

Feel free to bring examples of your own.

Tom is a graduate of the University of Victoria. He spent about three years with the Royal BC Museum archaeology division prior to starting a career with the Canadian Forest Service. His latest project with the CFS was to develop a searchable database of long-term and historic research sites for Canada. He has maintained a close association with archaeology and most recently worked with a Bermuda marine archeologist to document the glass bottles used by the Royal Navy. A publication on that project is in

For information, phone 384-6059