This is a fascinating and detailed archeological study of 95 African American convicts buried in a cemetery at the Bullhead Convict Labor Camp in Sugarland, Texas (41FB355). These convicts died during forced labor in sugarcane fields in the period from 1875 to 1908. The Zoom presentation is from the October 20th meeting of the Travis County Archeological Society. Lots of great detail. In the last 40 minutes the physical anthropologist gets down to the dirty story of what their living conditions and diet were like, and how this affected their heath.
EVENT – Texas Archeological Society Field School 2020 Kerrville (CANCELED/RESCHEDULED FOR 2021)
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.
K-12 SUMMER SYMPOSIUM (2017), sponsored by Texas A&M University
The HCAA recently took part in a symposium for Texas elementary and high school teachers held in Kerrville the week of July 24th. This event is sponsored by Texas A & M University and is called The K-12 Summer Institute.
It is focused on further training of teachers in science and related fields. There were over 200 teachers attending this years conference and the HCAA conducted all day classes in archeology for two of those days.
Morning sessions were in class rooms and afternoon sessions were in the field performing actual professional style excavations. The teachers learned about what archeology is, related fields of it, life ways of ancient Native Americans of Texas, tools and weapons they used, etc. including handling of a variety of lithic artifacts. A total of 30 teachers attended the HCAA classes over the two days.
Abstracts of Talks:
First Speaker – Robert Lassen’s presentation is titled “History and Archaeology at Folsom, New Mexico, and Its Lasting Effects on Our Understanding of the Initial Peopling of the Americas.” Essentially, he will begin with the controversy surrounding the peopling of the Americas in the start of the 20th century, and discusses how the Folsom discovery in 1928 resolved that issue (along with Blackwater Draw further refining our understanding). Then he will cover the emergence of the Clovis first model, followed by summaries of various archaeological sites that illustrate how the Clovis first model is no longer valid. Lassen will conclude by bringing it back to the original controversy surrounding the Folsom discovery and discuss that despite all we’ve learned, the basic arguments haven’t changed all that much.
Second Speaker – Sergio Ayala’s talk and power point presentation will be on the study Ayala and students did on all the various quarry blanks, etc. on a property in Gillespie County.
Bios of Speakers
Robert Lassen is currently a post-doctoral researcher working for the Gault School of Archaeological Research in its headquarters at Texas State University. He has a PhD in anthropology from the University of Tennessee, as well as an MA from Texas A&M and a BA from Southwestern University in Georgetown. Lassen has been interested in archaeology since grade school and participated in the Fort Bend County and Houston Archaeological Societies when in high school. Although his current work centers on academic research, he also worked for Hicks and Company doing CRM archaeology in 2006-2007. His interests revolve around lithic technology with focus on Paleoindian technology and has also been educating himself in Central Texas Archaic lithics as well.
Sergio Ayala is a Central Texas native and received his Bachelors of Science in archaeology from Texas State University. He is currently a graduate student at the University of Exeter, UK, under Dr. Bruce Bradley. Sergio balances his graduate study with his work as a project archaeologist for The Gault School of Archaeological Research at Texas State University, where he focuses heavily on experimental archaeology and lithic analysis. His research has developed new insights into technological behaviors of the Calf-Creek Horizon, and he is spearheading additional research that explores wider technological patterns and traits within highly specialized lithic industries in North American prehistory.
Rendezvous at the River Grand Success!
1st GUADALUPE RIVER TRAIL EVENT, June 20, 2015 GRAND SUCCESS
A GREAT TIME WAS HAD BY ALL!!!
Sponsored by: Kerrville Elks Lodge & Hill Country Archeological Association (HCAA)
Location: Riverside Nature Center (RNC) – 150 Francisco Lemos, Kerrville, Texas 78028
Exhibits along the route included: Flint Knapping, Mountain Man Roy “Tomahawk/Knife Thrower,” Veterans Assistance Dogs of Texas, Primitive Fire Building Displays, Earth Oven Cooking, Artifact Identification, Shrine Club with Clown, and other really cool things!
THANK YOU TO THE MANY HCAA MEMBERS & KERRVILLE ELKS LODGE FOR ALL THE AWESOME HELP MAKING THIS EVENT A GRAND SUCCESS!
GRADUATES OF THE 2014 HCAA ARCHEOLOGY FIELD WORK COURSE!!!
Students are (L to R): Mike McBride, Craig Mangham, Stephen Bishop, Kris Bobbitt, Steve Stoutamire (Course Instructor), Marvin Gohlke, and Jan Winzinger (not in photo).
Congratulations graduates!!!! And good luck with your new Kemosabe prehistoric excavation project!!!