Friday, July 4, 2014

Week seven update

Excavating a rich midden in Area G.
It's been more than a week since our last update, not due to lack of good progress or finds, but mostly due to the often overwhelming heat and humidity we've been experiencing out at Molino since the midpoint of our 10-week excavation season.  Much of our interpretation of architectural features and other artifact and stratigraphic data is still in development, though at this point it seems certain that the excavation units in Area E are associated with a clay-floored structure with abundant residential debris and a possible central hearth, while our newest unit in Area G is also penetrating a rich residential midden deposit with substantial amounts of charred wood, burned clay, and mission-era artifacts, possibly pointing to a burned structure.  The units in Area H are definitely associated with a thick yellow-clay "floor" deposit apparently overlying probable intersecting wall trenches (just as in Area C), and cross-cut by the 1760 stockade trench, currently being excavated.  The northern unit in Area C is now finished down to sterile subsoil (having penetrated a sawmill-era trash-filled trench or basin, possibly a borrow pit, as well as a mission-era corncob smudge pit), and a new unit was opened yesterday next to the southernmost unit in Area C, where a line of three apparent large, deep postholes paralleling a higher wall trench may indicate the presence of a large single-post structure here at the highest level area of the site.

In subsequent posts, we will doubtless focus in on interpretations of all these structural features and activity areas, but in the meantime, photos have been accumulating, which are presented below in the form of an informal photo essay.

Melodi, Kayla, and Jillian enjoying simultaneous work on a line of three posthole features (picture by Ericha Sappington).

Jodi taking a profile photo of the finished unit in Area C, showing the subsoil overlain by mission-era midden and a sawmill-era trench cutting through it.
A light moment in Area G, with Jillian, Katie, Jen, and Michelle.

Jodi and Chelsey working on profiles in Area C.

Michelle, Katie, and Jillian hard at work keeping up with paperwork.

Chelsea cleaning up loose dirt after profile cleaning.

Melissa at the newest unit in Block 5 in Area E, opened in search of a possible wall line extending south.

Kayla works on profiling one of three deep posthole pits lining up under a wall trench in Area C.

Michelle explains Block 5 excavations to visiting UWF students and staff from the Arcadia field school.

Ericha carefully excavates the north half of the burned clay hearth feature in Area E.

Nicole cleaning the floor of the new unit in Area E.
Dr. Worth, Kayla, and volunteer Michael Okray (Jillian's husband) in Area C (picture by Melissa Maynard).

Kristin and Michelle work on the newest unit in Area H, while Melissa holds the stadia rod to take elevations.
Nicole gengly brushing away dirt from a new find of majolica in Area E.

The same sherd after excavation, the waisted base of a small taza or pocillo.
A classic example of Ocmulgee Fields style incision on a carinated bowl.

A pinched rimstrip from a flaring rim jar.

An extraordinarily well-made piece of Mission Red Filmed pottery.

Wonderful layout of food brought for our annual holiday lunch cookout; thanks to all students for making this such a tasty break from normal field lunches.

Visiting UNF student volunteer Amberly Aldridge, with Jillian and Michael (picture by Ericha Sappington).

Melissa and Jen starting in on the food (picture by Ericha Sappington).
Dr. Worth serving home-brewed "black drink" (cassina tea) to Amberly (picture by Ericha Sappington).

Cooking hotdogs at the Molino boat ramp (picture by Ericha Sappington).
Dr. Worth interacting with the local wildlife again (picture by Kayla Rowe).

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