Long Barrack Archaeology Update - April 26

April 26, 2024

Archaeologists worked in four excavation units this week- EUs 8, 10, 14, and 19- and EU-15 was idle. EUs 14 and 19 are new units that were started this week.

In EU-8, archaeologists reached a depth of approximately 90 cm below surface. Archaeologists encountered a compacted caliche surface that extended into multiple levels. Additionally, two soil types were identified- the caliche-rich surface deposit and also a clay-mottled deposit. The clay-mottled deposit was restricted to the northern section of the unit. Artifact density remains high in this unit, with several ceramic fragments. A large, broken lead glaze rim sherd, likely Galera ware, was recovered in level 8 (100-110 cmbd).

Two pieces of lead glazed rim sherds on a dirt surface next to a trowel tool
Lead glazed rim sherds from EU-8.
Excavation unit about 90 cm below surface
EU-8 at approximately 90 cm below surface, photo facing west.

Archaeologists in EU-10 excavated to an approximate depth of 110 cm below surface. A thick (approximately 20 cm) compact caliche deposit, likely a prepared surface, was present in this unit. The deposit extended across the entire unit, only truncated by the previously identified limestone alignment. The deposit had a very low artifact density, however the artifacts that were present were quite exciting. A Guerrero point (dates to 1700s) and large Valero ware sherd (1700-1825) were recovered from the deposit, indicating this is a Mission Era surface.

Tubelike caliche deposit across the inside of an excavation unit
EU-10 at approximately 110 cm below surface, photo facing west.
Guerrero point on a diamond shaped trowel tool
Guerrero Point from EU-10.
Valero ware artifact next to a ruler for size
Valero ware recovered from EU-10.

Archaeologists began excavations in EU-14 this week. The top levels of this unit, approximately 40-60 cm, are modern landscaping fill. A depth of approximately 40 cm below surface was reached by the end of the week. Due to the recent deposition of the landscaping fill artifacts include modern materials.

Excavations in EU-19 also began this week. As with EU-14 archaeologists encountered the modern landscaping fill and were still within this deposit by the end of the week. While most material was modern, some older artifacts indicated a mixed deposit.

Flat dirt surface at the bottom of an excavation unit
EU-14 at approximately 40 cm below surface, photo facing north.
Flat, dirt surface at the bottom of an excavation unit
Excavations in EU-19, photo facing west.
Small, round projectile in the palm of a gloved hand with fingers exposed
Projectile from EU-19, mixed in modern landscaping fill.