Lupin Mine Revaluation 2023 - Passport in Time

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Washington - Colville NF
Closed! Lupin Mine Revaluation

20210904_124317.jpg by US Forest Service
Overview of Lupin Mine Site, post-fire. The footprint of a structure is visible in the foreground.

June 26-30, 2023
Volunteers must commit to entire session

Join us on the Colville National Forest this summer as we go “mining” for history! Lupin Mine is an historic mining site on the Colville that dates from around 1900. The site includes two vertical mine shafts, two exploratory trenches, three pit depressions, eight structures, two artifact concentrations, one adit (a horizontal tunnel from a hillside into an underground mine, used for access or drainage), and one large tailings concentration. Lupin Mine has been eligible for the National Registry of Historic Places (NRHP) due to its archaeological record and potential to contribute additional knowledge to history. However, in 2021, the Walker Creek Fire burned through the Bonaparte and Lost Lake area of the Tonasket District, and the Lupin Mine site was heavily impacted.

This Passport in Time project will be used to examine the effects that fire has had on the site, and will help to determine its continued eligibility for the NRHP. As wildfires are becoming more commonplace on our landscapes, Lupin Mine provides an opportunity to examine what effects fire has on cultural resources and may, we hope, provide insight on how to better protect them. In truth, wildfires can be both a curse and a blessing to archaeology – the Walker Creek Fire was both to the Lupin Mine site. On the negative side, the fire destroyed seven of the eight structures previously identified, and most surface artifacts no longer retain the small details archaeologists use to date and interpret the story of the site. On the positive side, post-fire monitoring has identified mining features and artifacts not previously recorded; the wildfire removed the vegetation concealing them. So, our goal will be to document the effects of the wildfire, and to identify and map out aspects of the site that have been revealed.

During this PIT project, we will be collecting the data necessary to report on the surface and subsurface damage to the site, and determine if Lupin Mine retains its eligibility for the NRHP using archaeological evaluation techniques. Volunteers will learn site mapping, skills in placing and recording shovel probes and, possibly, excavation skills. This is an important project, so we hope you’ll consider joining us this June!

Please note: current COVID-19 protocols, as recommended by the CDC and the Forest Service, will be followed to ensure the safety of volunteers and staff.

Number of openings: 6

Special skills: Volunteers must be physically capable of repetitive and sustained motions such as bending, stooping, and shoveling, and must be capable of hiking required distances each day over often rugged terrain, and in a variety of weather conditions; previous archaeological excavation, survey, mapping, and/or artifact identification skills welcome, but not necessary

Minimum age: 16 years old; applicants under the age of 18 must apply with a parent or guardian; guardian MUST submit a separate application and plan to attend for the full time frame as applicant

Facilities: Tent and small (e.g. pop-up) RV camping at no charge at BSA camp on the north end of Bonaparte Lake; potable water, pit toilets; a secondary location providing for larger (20’) RVs can be arranged, if needed, at the Bonaparte Lake campground; potable water, pit toilets; no hook-ups; fees will apply; volunteers wishing to bring larger RVs will need to provide project leader(s) with notice at time of selection, and/or state the intention on your applications – advanced notice is required for us to use this location, and for volunteers to make payment arrangements; hotels/motels, B&Bs, restaurants, and a wide range of other amenities available in Republic, Tonasket, and Oroville; volunteers responsible for personal camping equipment, food, water, and daily travel to and from designated meeting areas (if opting to lodge off-site)

Nearest towns: Republic, 26.5 miles; Tonasket, 27 miles; Oroville, 37 miles

Applications due: May 1, 2023

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