Day 15: Cool Stuff!

6/19/12

We made up for the past two seemingly slow days with a flourish of cool discoveries today. We also visited the Mule Creek field school, which was a pleasure. Its always fun to see what has been found at other nearby sites! It is also the start of our last weekend. I can’t believe how fast this project was flown by!

Unit 2. The crew of Unit 2 finished profiling the unit today. The unit is now complete, although we will try to get an archaeomagnetic sample from it on Thursday. The crew in Unit 2 just established a new unit, Unit 7, at the end of the day today. It is located on the southern end of the site, where there is much Classic period architecture. The unit appears to be in a cobblestone room. However, this side of the site has been greatly disturbed by looting. Hopefully the crew will help define the extent of disturbance in the room.

Unit 5A. It is still somewhat unclear as to what is going on in Unit 5/5A. But we did find some very cool artifacts in the unit today, and I think I am beginning to understand the architecture of the unit. The fill in 5A is much softer than the fill in Unit 5. As mentioned yesterday, it is absolutely loaded with artifacts, and seems to be trash fill. The fill in Unit 5, while also packed with artifacts, had more adobe, cobbles, and other architectural remains. I now think that Units 5 and 5A are located in a pithouse, but towards the center, and thus away from any definable architecture. I think we just clipped a wall in the north and east side of Unit 5, but really are only seeing wall fall and architectural collapse. Hopefully we will be able to define a floor at the bottom of Units 5 and 5A, which will help us to better understand the architecture in the unit.

Unit 5A at End of Day

-What I described above is important to understanding the history and occupation of the site– information that is more critical than individual artifacts. However, we did find some pretty neat artifacts in the trash fill of the unit today. We recovered what seem to be the claw bones of a large mammal, most likely a bear (Erina did a search online, and they do seem to be bear claws). We also found several large pieces of a corrugated pot, all in the same area. Most likely, the pot was broken, and then deposited with the trash. We will definitely be able to reconstruct this corrugated jar!

Bear Claws from Unit 5A

In Situ Corrugated pot in 5A

Corrugated pieces from 5A

Rim Pieces from Corrugated Jar in Unit 5A

Unit 6. Erin spent most of the day clearing the overburden in Unit 6. We made several interesting finds while doing this. The first was several large river cobbles along the western profile of the unit. These undoubtedly form the wall of Classic period architecture. Once again, it seems like we have architecture from different time periods built right on top of (and next to) earlier architecture. We also were able to define more of the adobe wall first identified in Unit 4 today. Finally, we came down on the first surface identified in Unit 4 (first identified by Dr. Peeples exactly a week ago). Remember, there should be another, better surface below this one. We only have 5 days left, but I expect this unit to provide us with much information about the architecture at Woodrow Ruin.

Unit 6 at End of Day (Adobe to the left, cobbles to the right)

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