Friday, July 6, 2012

Week Seven in Review

Hand painted polychrome majolica sherd from near the stockade.
View facing north of 1x2m unit with more features than matrix.
Possible post stains within F. 122.
Our 7th week of fieldwork has passed alarmingly fast, in part due to the Independence Day holiday as well as a couple of rain interruptions, but our crew continues to make good progress, focusing on bringing all open units down to the feature level, and exploring and documenting those features that have already appeared.  One of our units in Area C has revealed a myriad of trench, post, and pit features, causing a halt to the planned excavation of the surrounding midden matrix in favor of detailed feature excavation, as shown in the picture above.  Even when excavating within the southernmost east-west wall trench (Feature 122) today, two dark stains resolved themselves just centimeters below, possibly representing postmolds within the trench (pictured above).  These kinds of details, while generating more paperwork, are precisely the information we need to interpret these architectural trenches properly and understand what they tell us about Mission Escambe.

Large aboriginal potsherds, including one with a handle.
Red filmed potsherd.
In Area E just to the northeast, the midden deposit associated with the burned clay floor discovered last week is turning out to be rich in artifactual debris, including Apalachee and Spanish potsherds, glass seed beads, and even some charred food remains such as calcined bone and a peach pit (pictured above and below).  Other units are also producing evidence for the material culture of the mission, including a tubular black bead and a probable buckle prong.

Charred peach pit fragment from the mission midden.
A calcined bone fragment, a rare find in Molino soils.
Tubular black glass bead.
Probable buckle prong, possibly from Spanish horse tack.
Wesley, Michelle, and volunteer Patrick Patch.
UWF's Arcadia Mill field school students visiting Molino.
Tasty desserts at the Friday picnic at Molino Fairgrounds.
Our crew enjoyed a well-deserved picnic this Friday at lunchtime, including a number of homemade treats that left us all feeling stuffed and happy.  We are looking forward to the next three weeks of our 2012 field season, and await each next discovery with eager anticipation.

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