Archaeological Pedestrian Survey for the Proposed Trail in Pittman-Sullivan Park, San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas




Blomquist, Justin

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Center for Archaeological Research, The University of Texas at San Antonio


In January 2013, Adams Environmental, Inc. contracted with the Center for Archaeological Research (CAR) at The University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) to complete a background review for a proposed trail system followed by a pedestrian archaeological survey. The work was to be performed for the City of San Antonio (COSA). The Area of Potential Effect (APE) consists of a1 km (0.6 mi.) long pedestrian trail and associated trail heads around the YMCA located at Pittman-Sullivan Park, San Antonio, Bexar County, Texas. Pittman-Sullivan Park is bounded by Iowa Street to the south, New Braunfels Avenue to the east, Nevada Street to the north, and Palmetto Avenue to the west. Because the Pittman-Sullivan Trail Project is located on property owned by the COSA, archaeological work was conducted in accordance with the Antiquities Code of Texas, as well as under Chapter 35 of the Unified Development Code of the City of San Antonio. The survey was conducted under Texas Antiquities Permit No. 6448 issued to Dr. Steve Tomka, CAR Director, who served as the Principal Investigator. Justin Blomquist served as Project Archaeologist. In late January prior to the initiation of the fieldwork, the CAR carried out the background review associated with the project. The review found that in the late 1910s and early 1920s, at least a portion of the park consisted of the remnants of the City Gravel Pit. To help clean up after the massive 1921 floods, the flood debris may have been dumped in the western section of the park. It is possible that after abandonment, a portion of the gravel pit may have been cleverly reused to create a sunken garden by the late 1920s. A concrete tree sculpture attributed to famed San Antonio artist Dionicio Rodriguez stood in the garden at one time. City cemetery lots stood north of the project boundary but none look to have extended inside of the project APE. Also as part of the background review, the records of the Texas Archeological Sites Atlas, the CAR files, and archaeological reports associated with projects conducted in the vicinity of the APEwere consulted. The review found no known previously documented historic or prehistoric sites recorded within the APE. Subsequently, on February 5, 2013, archaeologists from the CAR conducted the pedestrian survey of the APE. The survey yielded no prehistoric or historic cultural materials in any of the nine shovel tests excavated along the project easement. It is therefore recommended that the proposed project be carried out as planned given that no historic properties will be impacted as part of the proposed improvements. All documentation generated by the project, including notes and photographs, was prepared for curation according to Texas Historical Commission guidelines and is permanently housed at the CAR curation facility.



archaeological investigation, archaeology, Texas archaeology, San Antonio History, Texas History, Archaeological surveying--Texas--Bexar County, Excavations (Archaeology)--Texas--Bexar County, Bexar County (Tex.)--Antiquities