Lamanai Artifact Library
Team Member: LAURA hOWARD
Karen Pierce wrote -
We, the Lamanai archaeologists, need money to improve storage of the artifact collections at the Maya site of Lamanai in Belize in order to preserve the cultural heritage of this important site for future generations. Our goal is to raise $20,000 to buy new metal "termite-proof" storage containers and shelving for the Lamanai archaeology bodega. We’ve been applying for grants for this for several years now, but these economic times do not favor such needs. The tropical environment is hard on storage materials—many of which disintegrate over time—and we have reached a crisis with the old containers falling apart, and termites eating the wood shelves. In the summer of 2014 donations enabled us to buy some new metal shelving and get 150 locally made galvanized zinc-boxes to re-house all of the artifacts. But we need more! The cost of one metal storage box is $20 USD, and we still need at least 500 boxes, plus the materials and local labor to build the steel & aluminum shelving.
We are planning our 2015 summer field season, under the direction of Dr. Elizabeth Graham, and we’ll be enlisting the volunteer help of archaeology students and others with the process of reorganizing the Lamanai artifact collection, so it is important to get funds for materials now. We intend to get locals involved in this too by hiring them to help and teaching them about the artifacts and archaeology at Lamanai in the process. Ultimately we hope to build a new facility for our Lamanai “artifact library”— a building which will allow better access to this incredible collection by researchers, tourists, and Belizeans, but that will be our next crowdfunding project. As archaeologist Jim Aimers said in his new book, “When I got to Lamanai in northern Belize, I was faced with a large collection of well-preserved pottery… the Lamanai collection is, in my opinion, one of the most important ceramic collections in the Maya lowlands…” 2013, page xiii, Ancient Maya Pottery: classification, analysis, and interpretation.
Please donate! We'll put your name on a box.
For more information on Lamanai visit www.lamanai.org.uk