Thursday, June 26, 2014

Stratified Bones and Stones

After yesterday's rain, we were able to resume normal excavations today.  We continued to remove layers of midden soil at about 5 cm for each level.  This is slow-going but necessary to preserve the fine contexts of the artifacts and other cultural remains that are turning up.  We are still finding large quantities of fire-cracked rock and flint debris but also increasing amounts of animal bone.  Up to now, we found mostly heavily burned (calcined) bone fragments but over the last two days more unburned bone from several different kinds of animals have turned up.  Much of this is deer bone (see below), but today we found the complete lower jaw of a muskrat and some leg bones of another small mammal.  Most of this bone is coming from unit 500N 512E at the south edge of the old orchard. Surprisingly, flint tool debris and even FCR are scarce at the 40 cm level of this unit.

A nearly complete projectile point was found in unit 490N 497.5E.  As seen in this image, the end of the stemmed base is missing.

The two features I described in my last post are becoming much more distinct, along with more fragments of the siltstone slab "pavements."  The oxidize clay feature (no. 14-1) was sectioned late

this afternoon and was found to be a rather thin layer of burned midden sediment.  Underneath is another siltstone slab as shown below.  Here is a good example of two separate activities (fire-making and stone deposition) separated by only a few centimeters of soil deposition.  This truly is a well-stratified site!

No comments: