Baker Cave, Val Verde County, Texas: The 1976 Excavations
Excavations, in summer 1976, have provided new data on the ancient human occupations at Baker Cave, Val Verde County, Texas. One objective of the research program was to obtain further information on habitation at the site during Late Paleo-Indian times. Radiocarbon dates of 7000 B.C. can be linked to this period and are attributed to the Golondrina complex. This cultural pattern is represented by a deposit containing chipped stone artifacts and other cultural materials. The most important discovery was a cooking pit that yielded an abundance of faunal and floral remains. Interpretation of the paleoenvironmental data suggests a climatic regime somewhat more moist than that of today. Overlying the Golondrina complex materials were strata ranging in age from 6000-3000 B.C. Chipped stone projectile points included triangular and stemmed forms distinctive of the early phases of the lower Pecos River Archaic. Paleoenvironmental data indicate a drying of the climate and the appearance of typical desert plants of the region. These deposits were capped by an occupation zone with Pandale points, diagnostic of the Early Archaic in the region. A second objective of the 1976 investigations involved horizontal strip-ping of an area with stratified Middle Archaic to Late Prehistoric occupations. These excavations provided data on the spatial distribution of activity areas and on the procurement and processing of plants used for raw materials and for food.