Peripheries and Boundaries
The Organizing Committee for the SHA 2015 Conference on Historical and Underwater Archaeology invites all of you back to the Pacific Northwest for the second time in the SHA’s history. The 2015 Conference will take place at the Sheraton Hotel in the heart of the city of Seattle, with many restaurants, famous coffee shops and microbreweries within a short stroll. The conference venue is five blocks from the Pike Place Market and the rejuvenated piers of the Seattle waterfront with ships, waterfront dining, the Seattle Aquarium, and a new enclosed Ferris wheel. As one of America’s gateways to the Pacific Ocean, this is an amazing setting to thinking about our conference theme, “Peripheries and Boundaries.”
As SHA comes to the Pacific Northwest for the second time in the organization’s history we wanted to select a theme that reflects the unique circumstances of the region and addresses some of the issues that frame historical archaeology scholarship in the West. In some ways the theme echoes the historical circumstances of Seattle, a community that was geographically bounded and economically marginal, but whose history transcends those boundaries in the process of becoming one of the 21st century’s economic and cultural centers of the world. We expect that the theme will foster many papers and symposia that explore the many manifestations of boundaries and peripheries in the past – and in the present.
The Plenary Session will be organized by Dr. Carolyn White, University of Nevada, Reno. More information will be available soon.
First settled in 1851 Seattle, Washington is one of the cultural jewels of the Pacific Northwest. It is an area that has been inhabited by First Nation peoples going back at least 4000 years. In the years following contact Seattle became a focal point for all of the major extractive industries that fostered western expansion. In the early years the town was prominent in the development of the Northwest logging industry. The city really took off with the gold rush of the 1890s. When gold was discovered in the Yukon Seattle became the provisioning hub for prospecting and mining. What developed in Seattle was a city that became an economic and cultural hub of the northwest. This leadership continued into the twentieth century as Seattle and Boeing Corporation became a leader in the growth of the Aviation industry in the first half of the century and technological innovation in the second half of the century (hello Microsoft!). Today Seattle is widely hailed as one of the most livable cities in North America. It boosts of a relatively temperate climate, a thriving economy and a diverse population. It is a city whose history offers much for the membership of SHA to explore.
Last year from January 6th to January 12th, 2013 the temperature ranged from 55F/13C to 37F/3C (highs) and 42F/6C to 26F/-3C (lows) with no snow and 1.75 inches/4.45 cm of rain over the course of the week. The previous year from January 8th to January 14th, 2012 the temperature ranged from 50F/10C to 41F/5C (highs) and 39F/4C to 27F/-3 (lows) with no snow and 0.35 inches/0.89 cm of rain over the course of the week.
Local tip: although it may “rain” frequently in Seattle the rain is often a light drizzle and so locals rarely carry an umbrella, therefore a water resistant/proof jacket with a hood will do just fine. If you do not wish to pack one with you, there are numerous stores within a couple block radius of the conference hotel which sell umbrellas.
This year’s conference will take place at the Sheraton Seattle hotel (1400 Sixth Ave, Seattle, WA). The hotel is located at the corner of 6th and Pike., in the heart of downtown Seattle’s central business district. All of the conference sessions, plenary, meetings, and banquet will take place at the hotel. Off-site events at a variety of unique venues are being planned, most notably the Burke Museum at the University of Washington, whose annual public “Archaeology Day” will take place during the conference this year, and the Museum of History and Industry/Center for Wooden Boats, located on the lakefront at the south end of Lake Union. The hotel is located within two blocks of premium shopping at two malls, the flag ship Nordstroms (5th and Pine St.), numerous fast food and gourmet establishments (and bars), and the hotel is within one to two blocks of four Starbucks. If Starbucks is not your first choice there are a number of local coffee shops, all with a few block radius of the hotel. As the venue is in the heart of Seattle, the area has a wide array of events, museums, and attractions to see, including the iconic Pike Place market (1st and Pike St.) which is only six blocks from the conference hotel.
The SHA has special rate of $129.00 (plus a 15.60% tax per room/night and a $2.00 per room/night tourism fee) for a single/double occupancy room (online booking code will be available soon). A $20 fee per room/night will be added for a rollaway (if desired) and a $20 fee for additional adults above two. Suites are also available at a conference rate of $350 (plus tax and fee) per room/night. For additional information please visit: http://www.starwoodhotels.com/sheraton/property/overview/index.html?propertyID=460
There are a number of hotels within a mile radius of the conference hotel, if the limited number of rooms at the conference hotel are filled an overflow hotel may become available.
Local tip: the names of the twelve streets in downtown Seattle (from south to north) are paired by their first letters. One way to remember the order of the street pairs is with the mnemonic “Julius Caesar Made Seattle Under Protest" (JCMSUP). You start at Jefferson Street, then you head north to James ("Julius"), Cherry and Columbia Street (“Caesar”). From there it goes Marion, Madison (“Made”), Spring, Seneca (“Seattle”), University, Union (“Under”), Pike and Pine Street (“Pressure”). This is a quick and easy way to find your way back to the hotel if you get lost, for example if you are on James street and want to get back the hotel you are nine blocks away from the hotel (pike). Also numbered avenues decrease as you head west (increasing as you head east).
Traveling to and from Seattle by air, train, and car is quite easy. The Seattle-Tacoma International Airport or Sea-Tac (SEA airport code) is the 16th busiest airport in the US and boasts of the world’s largest parking structure with over 13,000 parking spaces under one roof. The top 5 carriers into Sea-Tac are Alaskan, Horizon, Delta, Southwest, and United Airlines, but the airport has flights from over 20 airlines.
The easiest and cheapest way to get to the hotel from the airport is to take the Central Link Light Rail. The service runs from 5am to 1am Monday through Saturday and 6am to Midnight on Sundays. The trip from the airport to downtown (below Westlake Mall at 4th and Pine; 2 blocks away from the hotel) will take approximately 37 minutes and cost $2.75 each way. The trains run every 7.5 to 15 minutes depending upon what time of day. http://www.soundtransit.org/schedules/central-link-light-rail
Preferred Airport Transportation Provider -- Shuttle Express is the SHA’s preferred airport transportation provider. They will provide SHA Conference attendees a discounted rate of $25 per person round trip between Sea Tac Airport and the Sheraton Seattle Hotel. (Retail rate for this service is $36 per person round trip.)
To make your reservation, call Shuttle Express at 425-981-7000 and tell them you are with the Society for Historical Archaeology to receive the discount or you can book online at:
If you prefer a taxi service the trip can cost $40-$50, with some hotel to the airport services for $40 and may take 25-30 minutes without traffic.
For travel around the city, the “Metro” public bus system operates throughout Seattle and King County, and is one of the most extensive and highly-praised in the nation. To find a route, maps, and fare information visit Metro online at www.metro.kingcounty.gov
There is a scheduled bus service to downtown Vancouver, Canada, through Quick Shuttle, with stops in downtown Seattle, Bellingham International Airport, the Canadian–U.S. border, and at the Vancouver International Airport www.quickcoach.com
If flying isn't an option or you’re worried about the weather, the train is another option. Amtrak offers a number of trains running from Chicago, Los Angeles, Portland, OR, and Vancouver, BC and all across the west coast of the US. http://www.amtrak.com/home
If you choose to drive to the conference, Seattle is the beginning or the end (depending on which way you’re traveling) of Interstate 90 which connects to Interstate 5 which runs through the heart of the city with numerous downtown exits. However, parking downtown and at the hotel ($46 a day) can be very expensive and hard to find. Luckily if you choose to drive you can park at the Sea-Tac airport for cheaper (<$20 a day) and take the light rail for $2.75 each way.
The logo for the SHA 2015 Conference was designed by Coast Salish artist lessLIE. Here is his description of the logo’s significance:
Peripheries and Boundaries
In the spirit of spindle whorls, this circular Coast Salish design depicts five eyes pushing towards the boundary of the circle. The enlarged eye at the center is pushing outward and expanding the space of the spindle hole. The c-form eyes at the periphery of the design are pushing towards the boundary of the design. Simultaneously, the negative space of the trigons at the periphery of the design, are pushing towards the boundary of the design.
In designing this painting, I went through vaRATIONS of design; stripping the design down to its abstract essentials; testing the boundaries of abstraction and northern Northwest Coast influences, while retaining the spindle whorl shape and Coast Salish design elements.
Conference Details and Files