Archaeological testing of four sites on Camp Bowie, Brown County, Texas
Weston, Jason D.
Mauldin, Raymond P.
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In August of 2002, a crew from the Center for Archaeological Research (CAR) of The University of Texas at San Antonio tested four sites at Camp Bowie in Brown County Texas. Three sites, 41BR471, 41BR500, and 41BR522, were prehistoric and one site, 41BR392, had both historic and prehistoric components. This work was done under Texas Antiquities Permit No. 2926 for the Adjutant Generalâ€™s Department of Texas. Testing at these sites was done based on recommendations made for 41BR500 by Mauldin and Broehm (2001) and recommendations made for 41BR392, 41BR471 and 41BR522 by Greaves (2002). Testing at 41BR392 centered on a prehistoric burned rock midden. Excavations took place in and around the midden. A few bifaces and a considerable amount of lithic debris were recovered. The size, location and density of burned rock within the midden were examined as a means of investigating the internal midden structure. Analysis of these data suggest that the midden represents an earth oven. Ethnobotanical recovery revealed the presence of geophytes. Radiocarbon dates place the feature within the Late Prehistoric period. Testing at 41BR471 involved surface collection and excavation. Excavations confirmed that the site is deflated with sub-surface deposits being shallow and very minor. What remains of this site is a moderate to dense surface scatter ofunmodified debitage and a few lithic cores. Testing at 41BR500 centered on a suspected buried burned rock feature discovered during the spring 2001 survey. Excavations recovered unmodified lithic debitage, biface fragments and a scraper. Excavations in a separate area of the site where high debitage density was noted recovered a Nolan dart point dating to the Middle Archaic along with a number of bifaces and a considerable amount of unmodified lithic debitage. This additional testing uncovered a single charcoal stain, and radiocarbon dates place this feature within the Late Prehistoric period. Our analysis of the distribution of the diagnostic points, the distribution of debitage, and the radiocarbon date, suggest that much of this material is in secondary context. Test excavations at 41BR522 showed very little debitage in or around the prehistoric burned rock midden. This small midden is nearly a perfect ring of burned rock surrounding a central hearth depression. Preservation was excellent for the recovery of both charred botanical remains and for examination of the midden structure. A Montell dart point, dating to the Late Archaic was recovered. As with 41BR392, the size, location and density of burned rock within the midden was examined as a means of investigating the internal midden structure. Analysis revealed the midden to be a central hearth/earth-oven type burned rock midden. Ethnobotanical recovery revealed the presence of geophytes. Radiocarbon dates place the feature within the Late Prehistoric period. Based on the results of this testing, it is recommended that sites 41BR471 and 41BR500 are not eligible to the National Register of Historic Places and do not warrant status as State Archeological Landmarks. The sites have data that are of questionable integrity, and CARâ€™s testing work has effectively exhausted any remaining research potential. Sites 41BR392 and 41BR522 are recommended as eligible to the National Register of Historic Places and do warrant status as State Archeological Landmarks. Both recommended sites have data with good integrity. In addition, both sites have charcoal present, and good recovery of ethnobotanical material. Data from these sites can be used to consider a variety of research questions that are significant for understanding the prehistory of the region.
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