Mission Gate and Lunette Archaeology - December 2

December 2, 2022

The construction enabling work for the Mission Gate and Lunette Archaeology Project started on Monday, November 28th. The enabling work includes the installation of fencing around the project area and the removal of a modern landscaping planter and sidewalk. Clark-Guido is overseeing the construction crew and Alamo Trust, Inc. and Raba Kistner archaeologists are monitoring this work.

Fencing fully encloses the project area but remains without a windscreen covering to allow for visitors to watch the work from outside the fence (Figures 1 and 2). After the fencing was installed, the crew began to remove the old planter wall, a portion of the sidewalk, and modern soils. The machine excavation of modern soils is approximately 3 feet deep. The soils in the planter consisted of approximately 1.5 feet of loamy topsoil and approximately 1.5 feet of silty clay fill soils. Below the sidewalk there was a compacted construction base layer and sand. The demo work is ongoing and is expected to go through Monday, December 5.  

Blue fencing around excavation area in Alamo Plaza
Figure 1. View of Fenced Project Area, facing east.
Blue fencing around excavation area with Alamo Street in the background
Figure 2. View of Fenced Project Area, facing west.

While excavating the topsoil within the planter an old 7-Up can was found (Figure 3), approximately 1 ft deep. This style of can was popular in the latter half of the 1970s, which coincides with the creation of the planter. No other cultural materials were encountered.

After the soils from the artificially raised planter and sidewalk are removed to approximately the current street level, the archaeologists will begin to set up excavation units. The timing for the archaeological set-up is dependent on the completion of the construction enabling work but is tentatively scheduled to begin next week.

12 oz green aluminum can with white dot lettering next to a ruler for scale
Figure 3. 1970s style 7-Up can