Center for Archaeological Research
The excavations and subsequent analysis of the Panther Creek Springs site, 41BX228, a multicomponent prehistoric open occupation site in south-central Texas, are documented in this report. The investigations at 41BX228 partially mitigate the loss of cultural information caused by looters and potentially by a proposed Soil Conservation Service flood control project. The field investigations carried out in 1979 included mapping, testing, backhoe trenching, and the excavation of several block areas. Large quantities of comparatively well-preserved cultural materials were recovered and analyzed including: lithic, ceramic, and bone artifacts as well as faunal and botanical remains. Major aspects of the analysis and of this report include: descriptive, typological, and distributional studies of certain types of artifacts; the special studies of faunal, botanical, and soil samples; a study of the burned rock midden phenomena; an examination of the settlement pattern in the upper Salado Creek drainage, and a synthesis emphasizing cultural change and continuity through time in the local cultural manifestations as reflected by the site deposits. The Panther Springs Creek site represents a favored campsite repeatedly revisited over thousands of years by hunting and gathering peoples attracted by the availability of crucial resources, such as water, plants, animals, and lithic materials. The site served many functions including that of: a campsite, a lithic procurement area, a flintknapping station, a tool refitting station, a hunting station, a tool refitting station, a butchering station, a plant processing station, a hunting camp, a gathering camp, and perhaps a social gathering locality. The major problem in interpreting this site is that all of these activities were repeated countless times in an area that had very slow sediment accumulation. Thus, many details of 41BX228’s long history of prehistoric occupation will never be unraveled.
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