Photos from Experimental Archaeology course taught by Dr. Tom Whyte

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    Dr. Tom Whyte, right, helps students Nick Bovino of Blowing Rock and Autumn Melby of Sanford cook meat typically eaten by North Carolina’s earliest inhabitants, while their classmates observe. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Students in an Experimental Archaeology class set up camp in rural Watauga County. Photo by Tom Whyte

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    Dr. Tom Whyte talks with anthropology majors Amanda Neumeyer of Hendersonville and Emma Jones of Reidsville at the experiment site. Only 10 percent of archaeology is digging, he tells students – the rest is making meaning of what is found. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Students Martha Fisher of East Bend and Autumn Melby of Sanford map debris left behind as part of their class experiment. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Scavengers, as evidenced in this case by Whyte’s own dogs, can disrupt evidence people leave behind. That’s why archeological research sometimes contains misleading assumptions made by scientists. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    A fox appears at the campsite in this night-time photo taken by Dr. Tom Whyte’s motion-sensing camera. Photo courtesy of Tom Whyte

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    Careful note-taking is an important aspect of archaeology, students learn. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Lane Ledford, a senior from Morganton, learns how to make a flint tool from his professor, Dr. Tom Whyte. “A flake one-inch long can skin an entire deer,” Whyte told him. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Students shelled nuts and acorns on campus, another staple of the area’s early inhabitants, and then brought them in bags to distribute as waste at their experiment site. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Students scattered the bones left over from their “meals.” Strings help mark off a grid pattern of the placement so students could document it for archeological records. Photo by Marie Freeman

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    Campsites of early humans typically included a toss zone of waste, as evidenced here with scattered animal bones and a pile of the unused portions of nuts and acorns. Photo by Tom Whyte

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    Students learn to cook crayfish, part of the diet consumed by the earliest inhabitants of North Carolina, as part of their course titled Experimental Archaeology. Photo by Tom Whyte

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    This photo from a motion-sensing camera shows vultures picking through debris just a few days after the students abandoned camp. Photo courtesy of Tom Whyte

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    Luke James, a senior from Southport, uses a small shard of flint to pry meat from the bones of a cooked chicken, as University Photographer Marie Freeman captures the moment. Photo by Tom Whyte

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    In the tradition of earlier inhabitants, students opened their campsite with a ritualistic placing of seven kernels of corn and seven beans into the fire, seven being a spiritually significant number. Photo by Tom Whyte

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    Senior Martha Fisher of East Bend takes a try at striking flint to make a tool. Photo by Tom Whyte

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