Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Greg Brick on “The Rediscovery of French Saltpeter Caves in Minnesota”

--> --> Thursday, November 13, 2014 at 6pm in Hewitt Hall, Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center, Macalester College

Dr. Greg Brick, Metro State University, will describe the 2004 rediscovery of saltpeter caves along the Minnesota shore of Lake Pepin. The caves were originally described by French fur-trader Pierre-Charles Le Sueur in 1700 and lost sight of for more than three centuries. Saltpeter was the most important constituent in the manufacture of gunpowder and was often obtained from cave sediments. The Minnesota reference in Le Sueur’s Journal is the earliest mention of cave saltpeter in the Americas. The cave saltpeter business reached its peak during the American Civil War, when caves in the Deep South, worked by slave labor, supplied the desperate Confederate armies with this vital raw material.

About the speaker: Greg Brick Ph.D. teaches environmental science at Metropolitan State University and was employed as a hydrogeologist at several environmental consulting firms. His first book, Iowa Underground: A Guide to the State’s Subterranean Treasures, was published in 2004. His latest book, Subterranean Twin Cities, published by the University of Minnesota Press in 2009, won an award from the local chapter of the American Institute of Architects. His doctoral research on fur-trade era saltpeter caves in Minnesota is the subject of today’s presentation.

*Please note that this event is building #22 here and parking is available in the lot to the west

A no-host dinner with the speaker will follow the lecture at Pad Thai Grand, 1681 Grand Avenue, St. Paul

Saturday, October 4, 2014

International Archaeology Day Lecture & Student Poster Party!

Saturday, October 18, 2014, 11am-2pm in Hewitt Hall and Fine Arts Commons, in the Janet Wallace Fine Arts Center at Macalester College* 

Join us to celebrate International Archaeology Day with a lecture followed by a student poster session/party with refreshments:

11am in Hewitt Hall: Stephen Cribari** lecture on "'Monuments Men (and Women):' Cultural Property in Conflict Today." 

Today we are seeing how waves of nationalism can lead to the destruction of cultural heritage and cultural property when they are associated with memories of an undesired past, or fears of an undesirable future, and yet museums are under great pressure not to acquire art and antiquities with questionable histories of ownership even though it may mean the destruction of cultural heritage and cultural treasures.  U of M Law Professor Stephen Cribari will discuss humankind's tradition of cultural property depredation and consider how cultural property is (or is not) protected from destruction by fear, greed for power and the perils of the black market.

12-2pm in Fine Arts Commons: “Students in Archaeology: Poster Presentation of Recent Fieldwork and Research Projects Related to Archaeology, Repatriation, Preservation and Presentation” 

Our 4th annual poster poster presentation and party brings together students and professionals from many Minnesota institutions and is a great opportunity to visit and learn about the vibrant student involvement with archaeological fieldwork and research projects. Please join us for great conversation and light refreshments made possible by an AIA Outreach Grant.

*Please note that both events are in the same conjoined building, #19/22 here and parking is available in the lot to the west

**About the speaker: Professor Stephen J. Cribari is a former Federal Public Defender and professor of Canon Law who currently teaches criminal procedure, law and cultural property, evidence, physical evidence/expert testimony, and criminal law at the University of Minnesota. He is also the co-director of the University of Notre Dame Law School's Summer London Programme and, in 2012, served as Interim Director of the London Law Programme and visiting professor, teaching criminal procedure, evidence and law and cultural heritage. With Adjunct Professor Barbara Wold, he designed and taught Law and Cultural Property for the University of Arkansas (Fayetteville) School of Law. The program meets in Arkansas and Rome, Italy. More information about Professor Cribari’s wide and varied accomplishments are listed here:

Monday, September 29, 2014

Gregory Aldrete on "Floods of the Tiber in Ancient Rome: The Eternal City Goes Under"

Saturday, October 4, 2014 at 11am in the Pillsbury Auditorium at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts,_Italy_-_12_Dec._2008.jpg
Lecture summary: Ancient Rome was perhaps the largest and most architecturally sophisticated western city until the Victorian era, but this impressive metropolis was frequently the victim of violent floods.  The Tiber river could rise as much as 15 meters above normal water levels and left large sections of the city submerged for up to a week at a time. This lecture will survey the history and characteristics of these floods, their effects on the city, and how the Romans attempted to prevent or alleviate flooding.  Finally, it will suggest some surprising ways in which ancient Rome was unusually well-suited to surviving the onslaught of these natural disasters. As we have seen with the devastation caused by hurricane Katrina in New Orleans and recurrent flooding in the Midwest, floods remain a serious threat today.  Given this reality, it is worth examining how the largest city of the ancient world met this danger.

About the speaker: Gregory Aldrete is Frankenthal Professor of History and Humanistic Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Green Bay.  His particular areas of research interest are the history of the Roman Empire, rhetoric and oratory, military history, and urban problems in the ancient world.  He is a recipient of several awards for excellence in teaching at the university level, including the 2012 Wisconsin Professor of the Year.   Professor Aldrete has published a number of books and articles on his research, including Floods of the Tiber in Ancient Rome (Johns Hopkins 2007), Gestures and Acclamations in Ancient Rome (Johns Hopkins, 1999), Daily Life in the Roman City: Rome, Pompeii and Ostia (University of Oklahoma, 2009), The Long Shadow of Antiquity: What Have the Greeks and Romans Done For Us? with Alicia Aldrete (Continuum 2012), and Ancient Linen Body Armor: Unraveling the Linothorax Mystery with S. Bartell and A. Aldrete (Johns Hopkins, 2013) The lecture is free and open to the public.  Dr. Aldrete will be giving a Joukowsky Lecture, named for Martha Sharp Joukowsky, past President of the Archaeological Institute of America and Professor of Old World Archaeology at Brown University.  The Joukowsky Lectureship is part of the AIA’s National Lecture Program.

A no-host lunch open to AIA members with the speaker will follow the lecture at Christos Greek Restaurant, 2632 Nicollet Avenue, Minneapolis