Archaeology students dig for Detroit's history
This isn't your average classroom. Instead of learning under fluorescent lights, students in WSU Assistant Professor Krysta Ryzewski's Archaeological Field Methods course are scurrying about in the vast shadow of Detroit's iconic Michigan Central Station, unearthing relics of the city's past.
The undergraduate students, along with several graduate assistants, are taking part in an archaeological dig in Corktown's Roosevelt Park. Just one month into the course, the class has already ready exhumed more than 1,000 artifacts that detail what life was like in Detroit a century ago. The class has uncovered coins, doll parts, marbles, ceramics, tobacco pipes and glass bottles.
In the early 20th century, Roosevelt Park was a bustling neighborhood with nearly 300 homes and businesses. Ryzewski's class currently has excavation units on the site of a former hotel and two homes.
"We're hoping to recreate a picture of this neighborhood in the 19th and 20th centuries," said Ryzewski. "The ultimate goal is to study these items and unpack the identities of the people who lived here."
Some of the artifacts will eventually be displayed in Wayne State's Gordon L. Grosscup Museum of Anthropology, located in Old Main.
View photo gallery: Roosevelt Park Archaeological Dig - 2012 on Flickr