Saturday, July 10, 2010

Eight weeks down, two more to go

Although the first two days of this eighth week of our field season were marked by the Independence Day holiday and yet another rain day, we were treated to clear skies and dry conditions, not to mention heat and humidity, for the rest of the week (pictured above are Brett Briggs and Sydney DePalma sifting in under the blazing afternoon sun). From Wednesday through Friday, student crews have continued to make progress in all excavation units, including existing units as well as several new shallow units designed to trace out the long wall-trench interpreted to be part of the Spanish cavalry barracks. Only two weeks remain for the 2010 field school, and we are focusing on getting as much information as possible during the time that remains.

The photos below show some of our activities and finds this week. Pictured below is Amelia Easterling excavating around a cluster of handmade bricks discovered within the plowzone of our northern unit (possibly associated with the sawmill era).

Tonya Chandler is shown below photo-cleaning a 1x1 meter unit within the larger excavation unit below the bluff slope, where excavations are now suggesting much of the deeper staining below the 18th-century midden deposit is non-cultural.

Below are Brett Briggs and Sydney DePalma mapping the floor of our first excavation unit to be completed down to sterile yellow clay subsoil.

Below is a plan view image showing intersecting wall trenches (see pre-excavation shot from our July 5 post) which have been carefully sliced into sections in order to determine which trench was excavated through the other trench. The vertical trench (bisected to the right) was found to be earlier and deeper than the horizontal trench, still showing toward the top half of the picture above the deeper bisection toward the bottom of the picture.

The two images below show decorated rim sherds from two ceramic vessels. The first is a hand-painted fragment of tin-glazed majolica (Puebla Blue on White), presumably a plate.

The second rim below is of Native American (presumably Apalachee) manufacture, probably from a jar or deep bowl form, with incised decoration and a ticked lip.

The heavy metal object below was found in the plowzone along with artifacts from both sawmill and mission-period artifacts; it's identity and function is presently unknown.

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