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Journal of Northeast Texas Archaeology

Abstract

This paper discusses the Caddoan ceramics recovered during the 1992 Northeast Texas Archeological Society Field School at the Gray's Pasture site (41HS524) on Clark's Creek (see Keller 1992a), a few miles south of Hallsville, Texas (Figure 1) and about 2 miles from the Sabine River floodplain. During the course of the excavations, an extensive Caddoan settlement was documented on a series of knolls on a broad terrace landform overlooking the Clark's Creek floodplain (Figure 2), and each of those areas contains Caddoan ceramics. Most notably, a dense concentration of Caddoan ceramics, as well as two burials with whole ceramic vessels, was encountered in the northwestern part of the site, and the majority of the ceramics are from this area.

The four site areas include Areal (Unit 1) on a knoll at the northeastern part of the site, Area II on the terrace at the far eastern end of the site (Units 3 and 7), Area lll on the crest of the landform in the central and southwestern part of the site (Units 2, 5, and 6), and Area IV in the northwestern part of the site (Units 8, 8X, 10-16) (see Figure 2). Unit 4 belongs in Area III, and contained a number of sherds, but these artifacts are missing (Mike Turner, 1996 personal communication), except for one plain sherd. Unit 9, in the southeastern part of the site (see Figure 2) only had a few plain sherds.

A total of 2352 sherds and four vessels comprise the Caddoan ceramic assemblage from Gray's Pasture. This includes 1740 plain body and base sherds (Table 1), 61 plain rims, and 551 decorated rim and body sherds (Table 2). About 81% of the sherds are from ArealV, with 9.3% of the sherds from Area III.

There are 71 decorated rim sherds and 480 decorated body sherds (not including 11 red slipped sherds). The plain/decorated sherd ratio is 3.27 for the site as a whole, and ranges from 3.21 to 3.69 by site area. This is consistent with other pre-A.D. 1200 Caddoan sites in the Red, middle Sabine, and Neches-Angelina river basins, where such sites have plain/decorated sherd ratios that range between 2.97-4.80 (Perttula 1999a). Thirteenth and 14th century sites in these areas have plain/decorated sherd ratios of 1.30- 1.61, and Late Caddoan sites dating between ca. A.D. 1450--1650 have ratios of 0.56- 1.03. Through time, more Caddoan vessels are decorated, and vessels are more completely covered with decoration, rather than having the decoration confined primarily to the rim.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

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