Tuesday, March 17, 2009

A Biased View of a "Site"

Last Wednesday the PTAP crew was in the woods to survey a Union encampment site. Jim and Scott worked mostly on mapping and a metal detector survey, with Steve, while Pete and I supervised a shovel test pit survey. We dug 74 STPs at 50 foot intervals and came up with 2 rather undiagnostic pieces of metal, one or two pieces of historic ceramic, and several prehistoric stone flakes (lithics). On Thursday I took the Heidelberg crew to Point Lookout and Saint Mary's while Scott and Pete finished up the metal detector survey.

I brought all the encampment artifacts back to Heidelberg with me and looked through the collection yesterday. While the artifacts recovered from the STP survey could fit in a 6 oz cup those from the metal detector survey can fill a gallon jug or more. It just goes to show you that different sites require different techniques. Based on the STP survey alone there is little evidence of a Union encampment. Based on the metal detector survey there is a Civil War site there.


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