P. Gregory Warden, Southern Methodist University
Michael Thomas, University of Texas at Austin


Directors Greg Warden (left) and Michael Thomas (right)


Director's Report - Michael Thomas:

As the students and field staff begin backfill today, it is once again time to begin reflection on another season passed.  For the few of us who have been at Poggio Colla since the first season, it is hard to believe that we are finishing our 18th campaign. 

Season's end view from the east of parts of Poggio Colla trenches PC 45 (front), 22/30, (back), and 47 (far right)

Each year we have discoveries in the field that either add to our knowledge of the site, or in many cases, raise new questions.  This year was no exception.  Our wonderful trench supervisors, who must deftly balance the pace of conducting research with the patience needed to teach students, have given us much to chew on.  This season appealed to the dirt archeologist in all of us; though we did not have the sexy finds from previous years, we gleaned much information from supervisors’ careful excavation and keen observations of the soil. 

Field Supervisor Christina McSherry directs a student in PC 47

In PC 47, Christina McSherry (who will begin graduate study at UGA in the fall), gave us a new glimpse of the terraced area north of the courtyard.  Her trench discovered more of our elusive Phase I blocks, which in this case, had been incorporated in a later terracing wall. 

Field Supervisor Mike Guarino (upper center in white & black) excavating in PC 22/30

PC 22/30—excavated by Mike Guarino (who will start his graduate work at KU this fall)—has perhaps presented us with the most challenging new data, which includes numerous building phases and floor levels in the building to the west of the courtyard.

Field Supervisor Katie Rask (lower right) excavating near the north end of Trench PC 45

We must congratulate Katie Rask on both her recently completed Ph.D. at OSU, and her careful work in PC 45. She discovered what may be our first evidence of Phase I to the south of the courtyard. Her work this year also included the detailed documentation of the area around the altar.  We look forward to her presentation of our altar at this year’s annual meeting of the AIA in Seattle.

Örjan Wikander visiting Poggio Colla in 2012


Gretchen Meyers, Nancy De Grummond, and Katie Rask discuss altar in PC 45

I am grateful to the distinguished list of visitors that took the time to make their way to Vicchio and see Poggio Colla, a list that includes Örjan Wikander, Nancy De Grummond, Richard Hodges, Kate Quinn, John Albers, Natalie Stevens, Bouke van der Meer, Pat and George Edmonds,Tony Tuck, and Luca Fidele.  Add to that list Ivo and Caitly van der Graaff, two Poggio Colla alumni, who visited with their daughter Clio.   

Phil Perkins, Kate Quinn, Richard Hodges, and Greg Warden on the NW Slope


Tony Tuck and Poggio Civitate staff with Michael Thomas in 2012.


Ivo, Caitlin and Clio van der Graaff

As usual, I must thank both the students and our amazing staff for their contributions and hard work. We all share in what has become a logistically challenging 6 weeks every summer, and despite what often seems like long odds, we always pull it off.  I want to extend a special thanks to Darryl Wende and Sean Marlin, our co-Operations Mangers, who had to hit the ground running (being new to the project) and whose effort and congenial attitude have been a major part of our success.  

2012 Operations Manager Darryl Wende


2012 Operations Manager Sean Marlin


Field Supervisors Katie Rask, Christina McSherry,
and Mike Guarino discuss strategy for season's end.


Michael Thomas with Katie Rask and students in Trench PC 45


Andrea Santoni (kneeling in blue) and Greg Warden (2nd from right)
give a site tour to friends from the Vicchio commune
in 2012


View from the southwest of Trench PC 47 during Week 6.