Nicole Inskeep ’15
“In the summer of 2013, I was given an opportunity to intern in the Archeology Division at the Texas Historical Commission. Throughout the summer I worked closely with Brad Jones, Regional Terrestrial Archeologist and Amy Borgens, State Marine Archeologist. In this capacity I registered historical sites, examined artifacts, created an artifacts database, and examined/labelled artifacts from one of the most important shipwrecks in North America, the La Belle Shipwreck from 1686. I worked with the curators at the Bob Bullock Museum in preparation for the La Belle exhibit schedule to open fall of 2014, as well as assisted in publishing preparations for the La Belle book.
“In June, I was given the opportunity to partake in a live dig courtesy of the Texas Archeological Society. At the time, my unit was excavating a hearth feature from the archaic age. Removing this feature was our main priority and we unearthed a number of lithic tools and debitage. These artifacts were handed over to TARL, Texas Archeological Research Laboratory, to be analyzed and identified. While I did not work in the lab directly, I worked with the TARL team transferring field notes back and forth in the creation of the artifact database.
“Apart from the field work, my assistance in the La Belle Shipwreck was one of my favorite projects! During my work on this extensive project, I had the opportunity to handle gold Jesuit rings which La Salle brought with him as a trade good. As well as hawkbells, straight pins, tiny glass beads, and musket shots of various sizes. At the Bob Bullock Museum, I focused on numbering these Jesuit rings and the hawkbells for the upcoming exhibit.
“I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of this internship! Being a classics major pursuing classical archeology, I was looking to gain field experience (and course credit) since I was unable to travel abroad with SU. This internship gave me that opportunity. Not only did I gain excavation and curatorial experience, I gained mentors and colleagues that I will turn to for guidance from here on as I continue to work with THC. Reading about history is intriguing, being a part of history is a life changing experience!”