9-11 rememberance
            Israel 2006 
Carthage Web Site

The following is copied from an article on the Carthage College web site during the Summer of 2006.  - Inntrepid

Carthage Students Participate in Excavations in Northern Israel

Carthage Students Participate in Excavations in Northern Israel

omritFor the first time, a group of Carthage students is participating in Macalester College's excavations at Omrit in northern Israel. Dan Schowalter, religion department chair, and eight Carthage students are part of a team of 45 volunteers who wake up at 4:30 a.m. The group is on the site and working by 5:30 a.m. and leave the site by noon due of the heat of the Middle East. This year marks the eighth season of the Macalester College excavations at Omrit in northern Israel, and the first year of participation by Carthage students.

Omrit is a Roman period site. The most prominent feature of Omrit is an early Roman imperial (50 BCE-100 CE) temple complex. The earliest structure on the site is a small, ornate hellenistic-early Roman shrine with beautiful frescoed exterior. A second temple was built by Herod the Great around the year 20 BCE to honor the first Roman emperor Augustus. This first temple (temple I) encased the earlier ornate shrine. This temple, built during the reign of Herod, was later expanded during the late first century CE.

Omrit is situated where the Israel, Lebanon, and Syrian borders meet. The Omrit site and the Kibutz where the team stays -Kibbutz Kfar Szold - are a few hundred meters from the 1967 Syrian border.

The work schedule

The team wakes up at 4:30 a.m.. The group is on the site and working by 5:30 p.m. They leave the site by noon due of the heat of the Middle East. In the afternoons students wash pottery, identify artifacts, and update their square notebooks and journals. Three evenings each week the group has lectures at the Kibbutz. These lectures cover ancient history, architecture, pottery and artifact preservation, but also deal with regional history, current political issues and conflict in the region, and visiting lectures by local leaders and scholars. During the weekends the group tours important and historic sites and museums in Israel. At the end of the five week season the group will travel to Jerusalem.


Recent graduate, Ben Johnston-Urey cleans a second-century lamp found in his square. Ben is helping to excavate in front of the temple, in the area of the altar.


Greer Griffith cleans an oil lamp found in her square east of the temple. Lamp finds are an especially helpful way of dating occupation layers and structures.


Greer Griffith prepares to loosen rocks behind a ancient stepped platform in her square. Earlier, the team had removed a 13th-century oven from on top of the platform. The steps may be associated with the altar of the first-century temple.


Debbie Thorn (far right) along with Amanda Nelson (fourth from right) and Amanda Kidwell (fifth from right) pose with their square after clearing part of the north podium of the temple. Their work is made difficult by the presence of large architectural blocks that have fallen from the superstructure of the temple.


Karena Langehaug and Zac Myers clear debris from in front of the remains of a shrine dated to the middle of the first century BCE.


Zac Myers and Amanda Kidwell pose near a fallen pilaster capital from the second phase of the Roman Temple buildings. The capital is up-side-down, but the beautiful carved limestone is obvious.



[HOME] [WEB CAMS] [FAMILY] [- Journal] [- Events] [- Photo Albums] [- Pets] [COMPUTERS] [GAMING] [OTHER COOL STUFF] [GUESTBOOK]