Retired anthropology professor Len Stelle revisits the Staerkel Planetarium dome to present its next "World of Science" lecture, "The Archaeological Science of Some of Illinois' Prehistoric Religious Art," on Friday, March 2, at 7 p.m. Admission is $1 at the door with "Friends of the Staerkel Planetarium" admitted free of charge.
An undocumented archaeological site called the "Blood of the Ancestors Grotto" was identified in the Shawnee Hill Section of southern Illinois by Parkland College students in an archaeological field school in 2005. Recent advances in digital imaging and image editing operations have allowed more than 45 prehistoric pictographs, images painted on the rock wall, to be identified. While this site was initially interpreted as a "prehistoric rock art site," today it is recognized that these paintings were but one component of a much larger behavioral complex. Mr. Stelle will take his audience on a visual tour of the site and explain how the art is interpreted.
Len Stelle is a registered professional archaeologist and, with almost 40 years at Parkland, an emeritus professor of anthropology. His graduate work was completed at Illinois State University and the University of Illinois. His work appears in numerous publications and technical reports and he is a prolific presenter to professional audiences. A past president of the Illinois Archaeological Survey, Mr. Stelle holds membership in many state, regional, and national professional societies.
Following Mr. Stelle's presentation, the planetarium will present "Black Holes: The Other Side of Infinity." Tickets for regular planetarium programs range from $4 to $5. A full schedule can be found at the planetarium website
or by calling the show hotline at 217/351-2446