Where in the hell am I?

December 2, 2009

Excavation!

Filed under: Uncategorized — Tags: , , , , , , , — John @ 10:26 pm


17.me digging

Originally uploaded by texasrobo

So, I actually made it to Fort Hood!
Of course, Fort Hood is in the news right now, but archaeologically it’s actually in a really interesting area of Texas. It’s also about the size of a county. There’s several hundred sites recorded at Fort Hood, and there was a substantial testing and data recovery effort in the 1980s and 1990s. For the most part, the Army avoids the significant sites, or limits their impacts to areas that have already been messed up. This site had been cut through by tank trails, and likely looted. There are tank traps set up to the north of the site, near a creek. Apparently. the tank trail crosses a tough ravine at a dangerous angle, and a while back a tank rolled and killed the driver. So, they’re going to straighten the trail, which will impact the site.
The main excavation area is targeting a Toyah phase component identified during test excavations in the 1990s. A hearth feature had a radiocarbon date of 1300 AD (or 650 BP, if you want to get technical). The test unit with this feature is right below my butt in the picture, and it’s likely that more of the feature is in the unit I’m standing in. During trenching, a second possible hearth feature was found in the profile pretty much straight down from my head, which works out to about 2.5 meters on a straight line.
We’re going to expose the level that may have the Toyah component, which is about 20 cm below stripped-down surface. Hopefully, we’ll find some of the classic Toyah assemblage and the features, or at least some associated artifacts. There are also a number of other deeper features found in other trenches that we’ll target if the Toyah component is a wash.
It’s great to be doing a real dig again. It reminds me of why I love my job, which has been a struggle for me lately. Everyone was commenting on how talkative I was (even for me), and I felt so good being out there. I’m feeling sore in places I haven’t felt sore in a long time, and it feels so good.
Unfortunately, I’m only supposed to be out here for another couple of days, while the dig will continue for 2 more weeks. It’s terrible to say, but I really hope the East Texas survey falls through for a while so I can stay out here and dig.

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1 Comment »

  1. […] good friend John is finally back out in the field in Texas, digging squares and blogging about it. Recording Rock […]

    Pingback by Archaeology in Action – Mixed Media Edition « Middle Savagery — December 3, 2009 @ 9:54 am


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