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Agency

Journal of Northeast Texas Archaeology

Abstract

The Westerman site is located in the middle Neches River basin in the Pineywoods of East Texas. The site, first recorded in 1969, is on an alluvial terrace lying between Armstrong Creek to the south and Cochino Bayou to the north; these are eastward-flowing tributaries to the Neches River.

The site has a single earthen mound and an associated settlement that is estimated to cover ca. 10-15 acres; there are several areas at the site where aboriginal artifacts were noted at the surface, on each side of the mound. The mound, which was well preserved when it was visited in 1969, 1970, and 1986 by archaeologists from the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory at The University of Texas at Austin (TARL), is estimated to be 20 x 25 m in size, rectangular-shaped, with a level top that covers a ca. 10 x 5 m area; the height of the mound has not been established as it has never been mapped. The character of the archaeological deposits in the mound or the associated settlement has also not been established because no shovel tests or other forms of subsurface explorations have ever been conducted at the site. Only two small potholes were noted in the mound in 1969, and the mound and site were well preserved and protected by the landowners through the last visit by TARL personnel in 1986.

TARL archaeologists had speculated that the mound may have been constructed during the Woodland period (between ca. 2500-1250 years B.P.); Woodland period mound sites are rare in East Texas. To investigate this possibility, or to establish that the mound may have been built by ancestral Caddo peoples native to East Texas, TARL had made plans to hold their annual field school at the Westerman site in both 1975 and 1976, with Dr. Dee Ann Story as the field school director. However, due to various circumstances, including sale of the property in April 1976, these field schools were unfortunately never held at the site. In 1986 Dr. Dee Ann Story and Janice A. Guy visited the Westerman site and completed a reconnaissance of the site to assess its current condition and obtain a surface collection of artifacts from the mound and associated settlement. The Westerman site does not appear to have been visited by professional archaeologists since that time.

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

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