JOE ROSENFIELD ’25 CENTER – This past Saturday, the College Anthropology Department unearthed several skeletons dated to the Bronze Age.
The specimens, still wear ing rudimentary rucksacks and assuming a standing position, may prove to be an illuminating finding about Grinnell’s little-known past. “The erect posture exhibited by the students, the ingots found in their hands, their apparent ages, and their location on 8th Avenue suggests they may have been waiting for the shuttle to Wal-Mart during New Student Orientation. Their emaciated frames indicate they likely starved to death doing so.” analyzed Professor Kathryn Carter. “That would explain the lanyards hanging around their necks,” said Ida Freeman ’19, using the wellknown anthropological theory that only those occupying the lowest rung of a community wear lanyards.
The student and faculty archaeologists speculated as to why the primeval humans would linger at the stop to the point of expiration. “Maybe they desperately wanted supplies to decorate their dorms. A commonly held belief by adolescents of the era was that social gatherings would only be held in the most decked out rooms,” proposed Professor Brian Wutherspoon.
However, a conclusive theory regarding the students has yet to be found, owing to the peculiar circumstances of their deaths. “Why would they loiter at the stop for what must have been weeks? If nobody was able to tell them that the shuttle was cancelled, why were they unable to reach that conclusion by themselves?” ques t ioned Professor Emma Goodier. “Maybe the admissions criteria of the college were at a much lower standard circa 20,016 BCE,” proposed Karen Zhang ’18.
The next order of business for the Department of Anthropology is to start a new dig outside the Office of Campus Safety to investigate the reasons behind the Grinnellians’deaths. If the shuttle, which likely would have been an oxen-drawn cart, is found, that could shed light on the reasons why it did not arrive at the stop, explained the faculty. Knowing the structure of the archaic organization, this would clarify why the students were not informed of the shuttle’s absence.
“Regardless of the questions raised here, this dig has been extraordinarily valuable in assessing Grinnell’s history. Being able to know how much campus culture has evolved over the past millennia is of great anthropological significance,” said Professor Bruce Noonan.