General Meeting, March 21, 2020
Doors open at 12 noon with refreshments. Meeting begins at 1:00 pm.
Title: Locating Lost Cemeteries of the Hill Country
Speakers: Jenny McWilliams, Coordinator of the Texas Historical Commission Cemetery Preservation Program
Site identification is at the very core of preservation. Small family cemeteries are scattered throughout the Texas Hill County. Without identification and assessment, they will be lost to land-clearing and development.
Archeologists are trained to observe the landscape and look for clues of the past. It is this skill that will be needed to save forgotten isolated graves and small family plots.
McWilliams invites you to learn more about the needs and procedures involved in finding, recording, and preserving these historic sites of the Texas Hill County.
Jenny McWilliams works for the Texas Historical Commission as the Cemetery Preservation Program Coordinator. Her position includes answering inquiries about cemetery law, access issues, cemetery maintenance, preservation, protection and recording. As the Cemetery Program Coordinator, Jenny also manages the Historic Texas Cemetery designation program as well as the THC’s online Historic Sites Atlas.
Prior to her work at the THC, Jenny was an archeologist for Cultural Resource Management firms in Texas. As part of her 20-year archeological career, Jenny traveled extensively throughout Texas, often excavating graves for relocation for clients such as TxDOT, lignite mining companies, and a reservoir project. Jenny received her undergraduate degree from Southwest Texas State University and her Master’s Degree from Texas Tech University. Jenny was raised in College Station, where her father was a professor at Texas A&M, and she currently lives in Austin.
Place: Union Church Building, 101 Travis St, Kerrville, TX 78028
This is at the intersection of Broadway, Travis Street, and Water Street. There is plenty of parking, and the larger space inside will accommodate everyone very comfortably.
EVENT – Texas Archeological Society Field School 2020 Kerrville
HCAA has joined forces with TAS to conduct the 2020 TAS Field School in Kerrville (June 13-20)!
The Texas Archeological Society has designated the 2020 annual Field School to be on a private ranch just west of Kerrville (TAS 2020 Field School). This private property is 88 acres in size and borders the Guadalupe River near Bear Creek. It is located on the same river terrace as the Gatlin Site (41KR621) which was accidentally discovered by TxDOT crews in 2004 when construction for the new Thompson Drive extension to the new bridge crossing the river. Gatlin has been hailed in literature as one of the most significant Early Archaic sites ever found in Central Texas. It has a robust point assemblage and 50 carbon 14 dates in addition to animal and plant remains. Much of the Research Design for the Field School private ranch will center on increasing understanding beyond what Gatlin could provide due to limits of TxDot construction schedules and right of ways.
Based on the work that the Hill Country Archeology Association (HCAA) has done on the property over the last 5 years, most all of the 88 acres contains archeology deposits.
The HCAA has been exploring the property to identify promising areas for the 2020 field school excavations. The terrace deposits are rich in culture containing middens, abundant lithic scatters, discrete fire cracked rock (FCR) hearths and a large variety of stone tools and projectile points. Radiocarbon dating on the site has been limited but the oldest cultural material found thus far is 7280 ybp (years before present) calibrated from an FCR hearth with associated Early Archaic Projectile point. A good representation of diagnostic points cover the Early, Middle, Late and Transitional Archaic periods. Some broken points have been found which are tentatively identified as Late Paleolithic, and one Perdiz arrow point was found representing the Late Prehistoric Period.