Journal of Northeast Texas Archaeology




The Hudnall-Pirtle site (41RK4) is an important Early Caddo (ca. A.D. 900-1200) period multiple mound center and large village situated on an alluvial terrace of the Sabine River in East Texas. Although best known through the archaeological investigations conducted by the Texas Historical Commission (on behalf of the Archaeological Conservancy) at the site in 1989 and 1990, Buddy Calvin Jones, then of Longview, completed his own investigations at the site in the 1950s and early 1960s, although he never published any of the archaeological findings from his work, and is has not been clear from the available records and anecdotal information where he conducted his excavations.

At the 1963 Caddo Conference, Jones described the Hudnall-Pirtle site (which he called the Bivins Farm site) as follows: there is one big mound site (Bivins farm) located in the Sabine bottomlands of northeast Rusk County. It is composed of five mounds arranged around a plaza; they consist of two large rectangular temple mounds and three large circular mounds. I would guess this site to be primarily of Alto origin although tests in the village area revealed Alto and Coles Creek sherds.

Since the Hudnall-Pirtle site is now known to actually have eight mounds, it would be useful to present-day Caddo archaeologists to know which mounds Jones was referring to in his description, and how their layout and placement compared to current maps of the site. It would also be helpful if information was available on where Buddy Jones conducted excavations at Hudnall-Pirtle, and what he may have found in that work.

Until just a few months ago, all that was known or conjectured about the Buddy Calvin Jones excavations at the Hudnall-Pirtle site consisted of information gleaned in conversations with his mother, who mentioned trench excavations in Mound C, thought to be a burial mound, and other trenches excavated in village areas and at least one mound in 1958 and 1959. Fortunately, however, Buddy Calvin Jones maps and profiles from his work at the Hudnall-Pirtle site have been recently donated to the Gregg County Historical Museum (GCHM), although it is not known if all the notes, maps, and profiles compiled by Jones are now in the GCHM collections. This article discusses the Buddy Calvin Jones notes on his 1956-1961 work at the Hudnall-Pirtle site.

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