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    Papers in Applied Archaeology
    (Center for Archaeological Research, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1978)
    Whether or not archaeology has an applied aspect is something of a conversation stopper. Some archaeologists hold that it has no apparent practical value, and that it in fact justifies its existence out of human interest in the past. Some of this interest centers around scholarly activity. Closer to the public sector, recognition that heritage and recreation are closely associated has recently resulted in some major reorganization of U.S. government bureaucracies (see Briggs, this volume). In other parts of the world, such as France and Mexico, providing archaeological entertainment for the public has long been the staple of certain government service organizations. To the extent that the public interest and conscience are served, it is legitimate to think of archaeology as a practical undertaking. The papers presented in this volume are concerned not only with the public interest aspect of archaeology but also with alternative and direct practical benefits. The thinking presented was occasioned by a massive increase in public expenditure for archaeological investigation. The papers certainly do not exhaust the topic, but we feel they do provide a fairly well rounded view of practical archaeology in the state of Texas. Fritz (1973) has provided the literature with a well founded discussion of the relevance of archaeology. We realize that conditions and orientations elsewhere differ, and a more broadly based symposium is being organized for the 1978 American Anthropological Association meeting. The papers printed herein were originally presented at the annual Cibola Anthropological Association Conference in Austin on March 11,1978. Five papers were read. The first two, by William J. Mayer-Oakes and E. Mott Davis, are concerned with the public foundations and future of archaeology. The last three papers are more concerned with the efficient and beneficial application of public funds to archaeological problems. They were presented by Joel Gunn, Les Davis and Alton Briggs. The session was chaired by Joel Gunn. W. J. Mayer-Oakes' paper points out that archaeology has no obvious applied tradition such as that attributed to physical anthropologists who design seats for aircraft, or cultural anthropologists who work with international development projects. Even so, public policy, most of which archaeologists had little say in designing, has called for a tremendous effort on the part of the profession to preserve the nation's prehistoric and historic heritage. In order to cope with the problem, archaeologists must radically rethink their position in the scientific community and their modes of operation. Of special importance is the need to insure that public monies designated for archaeological work are managed in a businesslike manner and that they serve public archaeological purposes rather than the purposes of individuals. Without immediate conscious effort, neither end will be realized. As Mott Davis indicates, archaeology is very high on the public's list of topics of general interest. It is suggested that this interest stems from five sources. The first two, romantic notions and esthetics, are a mixed blessing from the point of view of archaeology since they often foster destructive acts toward the archaeological record. The last three, interest in human variety, concern for social roots and interest in archaeology as a technical avocation encourage responsible attitudes toward monuments of the past and therefore should be actively supported by professionals. Joel Gunn's presentation suggests that applications of archaeological knowledge l1e mostly 1n the realm of basic research and knowledge about human origins. Recent circumstances, however, indicate that archaeologists can playa direct role in the research and development phases of economic planning in modern societies. Apparent drastic climatic changes are placing the public in dire need of knowledge concerning projected climatic trends and alternative solutions to coping with abnormal conditions. The long term paleoclimatic and cultural data sets controlled by archaeologists provide as clear a potential solution to the problem as any available. The author is conducting research on south Texas climate and cultural adaptations to that end. Les Davis observes that the archaeologist who acts in the roles of both scientist and engineer is being wasteful. The growing archaeological industry should seriously consider developing archaeological engineers by offering degree pro-grams in the subject. Archaeologists should develop a "Handbook of Applied Archaeological Techniques" containing recommended practices for shoring excavations, wiring sites for electricity, etc. Such a handbook would add to the safety and efficiency of archaeology. Alton Briggs' presentation points out that archaeology as a discipline is responsible for the management of a perpetually and irreversibly dwindling resource, the archaeological record. The strategy at present is to balance the loss by preserving as full a range of archaeological sites as possible. In fact, there is a wave of public interest in preserving evidence of the past, and private individuals have more than once expressed criticism of professional archaeologists· inability to discover and preserve sites. Briggs suggests that, in addition to public law, a conservation ethic is needed to guide resource management objectives. Persons invited to the symposium were drawn from a wide range of archaeological involvements. William J. Mayer-Oakes is head of the Cultural Resources Institute at Texas Tech University, Lubbock, Texas. He has been involved for some time in promoting awareness of imminent changes in the future of archaeology, political action favorable to archaeological purposes and public awareness of archaeological problems. Mott Davis has an enduring interest in public awareness of archaeology, stemming from many years' involvement in archaeological film making. He is Professor of Anthropology at the University of Texas at Austin. Joel Gunn was led to an interest in practical applications of archaeology when paleoclimatic research required the analysis of several modern weather and climate data sets. He is at The University of Texas at San Antonio. Les Davis is the president-elect of the Texas Archeological Society and is a lifelong amateur archaeologist. He is employed as an engineer by the U.S. government, testing missiles. Alton Briggs is the Director of Cultural Resource Management with the Texas Historical Commission. He is active in developing a program to direct the future use and preservation of cultural resources in the state for public and professional benefit.
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    Impact: The Effect of Climatic Change on Prehistoric and Modern Cultures in Texas (First Progress Report)
    (Center for Archaeological Research, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1978-03)
    The pages of this report contain an assortment of materials which reflect the status of climatic change studies at The University of Texas at San Antonio. The effort is interdisciplinary, drawing on the talents of persons trained in geography, prehistory, anthropology, and mathematics and other fields. The goals of the project include (1) efforts to understand how prehistoric and modern economies respond to significant climatic changes and (2) the application of such understanding to our own time and nation. Long-term climatic change as an important factor in the everyday life of 20th century people is a relatively recent issue. With notable exceptions, attitudes toward climate during the last century have been fostered by increasingly warmer and more comfortable winters, longer growing seasons and consequently higher agricultural productivity. Only in the last decade have the energy crisis and increasingly severe winters combined to create a general public awareness of the instability of global climate. Public awareness has risen to the point that there is a best-selling book on the topic, entitled Climates of Hunger by Bryson and Thomas. One can hardly open a newspaper today without seeing an article on the impact of climates. By contrast, prehistorians are often brought face-to-face with evidence of cataclysmic climatic shifts. The climatic concerns expressed in the following pages originated out of prehistoric archaeology where climatic change is often a direct mechanism affecting cultural change. For instance, an article Wenland and Bryson published in the journal Quaternary Research demonstrates that most of the prehistoric cultures identified by archaeologists started and ended during recognized periods of radical climatic change. Although our research interests started with prehistory, we very soon widened the scope to include problems of modern climatic change. The reason was that ideas which explain prehistoric relationships between climate and culture are, at least in part, most easily tested by examining weather data carefully collected by the weather services of various nations over the last few years. The realization that the past could be studied through the present, and vice-versa, eventually led to expanded research into historic and modern records for climatic patterns. Also, our sense of the usefulness of these efforts has grown. In the context of a growing demand for practical applications from all fields of research, we feel that our research will lead to a better understanding of the climatic forces affecting our own times, and to direct assistance to those responsible for planning our future national needs. As the table of contents indicates, the first section of the report is devoted to brief summaries of talks presented during a planning symposium at The University of Texas at San Antonio on March 4, 1978. The six presentations summarize the status of various fields of research and projected funding needs for the next two years. The summaries were prepared by Royce Mahula of the Center for Archaeological Research staff. Subsequent pages contain (1) an abstract of a paper the research group is planning to prepare for the International Conference on Climate and History to be held in England during 1979, (2) the proposal letter for a project now underway to monitor the effect of climatic change on vegetation via satellite, and (3) a recent newspaper article relative to our research group's activities. This last item is included as a demonstration of our intention to inform the public of our activities and to assure the tax-payer that the knowledge gained from our efforts is put to practical use. Another item published here is a summary of a proposal recently funded by the Ewing Halsell Foundation of San Antonio for the study of climatic change in southern Texas. Finally, we have listed the major participants in the evolving climatic research effort.
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    Hunters and Gatherers of the Rio Grande Plain and the Lower Coast of Texas
    (Center for Archaeological Research, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1976) Hester, Thomas R.
    In this brief paper, I will attempt to summarize prehistoric cultural manifestations found on the Rio Grande Plain of Texas. A portion of this paper is devoted to a discussion of past and present environments, as I feel that a knowledge of these is essential to an understanding of prehistoric life in the area. The scanty data now available on the regional culture sequence are presented. However, my primary goal in this paper is to briefly outline the major prehistoric cultural traditions on the Rio Grande Plain. These traditions represent ecological adaptive responses made by the prehistoric inhabitants, and are reflected in the archaeology and ethnology of the area. At the time of European contact, the Rio Grande Plain was occupied by hunting and gathering peoples of the Coahuiltecan linguistic stock. All evidence suggests that it was their ancestors who lived in this region for most, if not all, of the prehistoric era. Archaeological work has been sporadic in the region, with most activity occurring within the past 10 years. Some small areas are now known in some detail, but vast portions remain to be studied. Syntheses of the area have been presented by Sayles (1935), Suhm, Krieger, and Jelks (1954), Kelley (1959), Campbell (1960), and Hester (1969a). I will reserve a discussion of the history of archaeological research in the region for a later version of this paper.
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    Early Human Occupations in South Central and Southwestern Texas: Preliminary Papers on the Baker Cave and St. Mary's Hall Sites
    (Center for Archaeological Research, The University of Texas at San Antonio, 1978) Hester, Thomas R.
    During July, 1976, a field team from The University of Texas at San Antonio conducted limited excavations at Baker Cave in Val Verde County, south-western Texas. The site is located on Phillip's Canyon within the Devil's River drainage. The work was funded by the Center for Field Research (Belmont, Massachusetts), the Texas Archaeological Foundation, and the UTSA Center for Archaeological Research. The cooperation of ranch owner Mary Baker Hughey is deeply appreciated. I served as field director, and Professor Robert F. Heizer as co-director. [...] During June and July 1977, The University of Texas at San Antonio Archaeological Field Course conducted excavations at the St. Mary's Hall site (41 BX 229), within the city limits of San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas. The site was officially recorded in 1973. However, prior to that time, during 1972, a house was built on the southern portion of the site, an area lying outside the bound­aries of the St. Mary's Hall property (a private girls' school). During the clearing and construction phase, extensive pothunting destroyed the southern portion of the site. Fortunately, the collection (including numerous Golondrina, Angostura and Plainview points) was kept intact and has since been analyzed (Cantu et al., ms). Because of the total destruction of the southern section of the site, the then newly-formed Southern Texas Archaeological Association (STAA) decided to undertake test excavations to learn something about the St. Mary's Hall sector.