Monday, June 14, 2010

Humidity and heat

Today's excavations were undertaken in remarkable humidity and heat, with little to no breeze to cool things down. Nevertheless, progress was made in all excavation areas, though much of this progress involved documentation and careful removal of soil to predetermined elevations, or following the boundaries of cultural strata (pictured to right are Linda Suzanne Borgen and Mark Vadas mapping soil stains associated with deep plow scars).

As the clay cap in our southernmost unit was being removed today, a number of mission-period artifacts were discovered in the dark soil beneath it, all neatly sealed beneath the undisturbed 18th-century clay cap layer. As exemplified in the photos to the left and below, the assortment of mission debris included both Native American and European ceramics, lead shot, and an as-yet unidentified iron object, all embedded in apparently random position within the dark fill, possibly a secondary deposit of debris from elsewhere (though likely nearby). Toward the end of the day, flat-shoveling was halted when a fragment of sheet-brass was discovered and carefully excavated (see video and photos below). We hope to see more of this deposit tomorrow, and make continued progress in other units.

Pictured below is a thick sherd of tin-glazed tableware in-place in the soil matrix.

Pictured in the following video is Allen Wilson excavating the soil around the sheet brass object pictured below.

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