Posted in Blog Post, Excavation, Field, Uncategorized

13 units, all in a row

– post by Carrie D.      

Today we continued excavating our units (there are 13 total units being excavated). Each unit is along the same coordinate line so that we can eventually create one continuous trench.

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Our units are in a line running south to north, though not always touching each other. This allows us to see a cross-section of the site on the long axis. 

Many of the excavation units thus far have contained pottery sherds and lithics while others have contained shells and bones.

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Fragments of turtle shell, oyster shells, and pottery are examples of the types of remains we find that give us clues about ancient life in this part of Florida’s Gulf Coast. 

The discovery of these artifacts allows us to map out the site and see how far the plaza, the place where people once used for daily activities, extends and where the shell midden ring, where they discarded their waste, begins. In addition to the artifacts we are discovering in each unit, the color changes in the soils can also tell us important information about the site. For instance, a few of the units have contained a light yellowish colored soil that is distinct from the usual light brown colored soil.

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The tools on the left side of the picture are some of the things we need in addition to our more traditional shovels and trowels.

 

The units with the light yellow soil have been marked as a part of the plaza area. These particular features are also starting to appear in adjacent units as well. The more units we open up the more we can tell about where the plaza ends and where the outer shell midden begins. This information will help us map and better visualize the perimeters of the site.

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Author:

Associate Professor of Anthropology at Florida State University Zooarchaeologist Awesome dessert maker