A year ago, Crossroads principal Rick Budhwa received an unexpected email: His master’s thesis, 15 years after its completion, had caught the attention of Gesa Mackenthun, a professor at the University of Rostock and organizer of anthropological conferences around the world. Dr. Mackenthun invited Rick to present the paper at her symposium, Decolonizing “Prehistory”: Deep Time and Topological Knowledge in the Americas, held in Rostock, north of Berlin, this month.
In early April, Crossroads was thrilled to present our 18-minute documentary, Sacred Ground, at the Society for Applied Anthropology Film Festival. The festival is part of the SfAA’s annual conference, which attracts roughly 2,000 participants from around the world, and took place this year in downtown Philadelphia.
This spring, Crossroads conducted a recovery in Moricetown, BC. The site (which had previously been disturbed) revealed bone fragments and cultural artifacts when machinery was brought in to install a staircase. Digging on reserve can be tricky business — the recovery of bone fragments and artifacts requires working closely with the community for a better understanding of cultural concerns. This three-minute video offers a glimpse of life on an archaeological excavation, along with highlighting the challenges and rewards that come with cultural resource management work.
When we started Crossroads CRM in 2004, it was a response to the business-as-usual, focus-on-the-material archaeology that was happening across the province. We thought it could—in fact, it should— be done differently. We believed there was a place for integrating the material remains of a culture with the living, breathing people that still occupy the lands, that still honour their ancestors. That’s why we were thrilled to receive a call from the Xaxli’p First Nation in May 2016.
Last week, Crossroads had the privilege of not only presenting at the world’s most prestigious archaeology conference, we were honoured to do it next to colleagues who have come to mean a lot to us.
As much as we’d like to try, it’s hard to turn away from what’s happening south of the border. It’s even harder not to see the US’s cultural divisions and ask ourselves, “Could it happen here?” It can. It does. Indeed, it has.
Crossroads Cultural Resource Management is proud to launch our new website. This is a big deal for us. Many brains and many hands went into making this new site a reality and we couldn’t be happier with the result.
Last month, Crossroads lost two shining lights in its immediate community. Both had a significant impact not just on their respective communities, but on Crossroads and the work we do here. I’d like to tell you a little about them.
In October, Crossroads sent a team into Kemess Mine in north-central B.C. to do an archaeological impact assessment for its proposed Kemess Underground Project. The team experienced stunning high-alpine vistas and found evidence of past use in the area, on the periphery of the proposed mine site.
Vera Poole from the Tsay Keh Dene and Margo French from Takla Lake First Nation joined Crossroads’ Jocelyn Franks, Dana Evaschuk and Sarah Weber as they assessed the proposed underground mine and its potential impacts on local culture in early October. Along with supporting the crew, the First Nations women contributed extensive amounts of local knowledge.
Crossroads was deeply humbled to be involved in a recent archaeology project with the Osoyoos Indian Band. On April 30, the band’s Lands Directorate made a phone call to our senior archaeologist Meghan Fisher, asking her to “Come take a look at some bones…”