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Agency

Texas Historical Commission

Abstract

Perennial Environmental Services, LLC (Perennial), on behalf of Gulf South Pipeline Company, LP (Gulf South), a subsidiary of Boardwalk Pipeline Partners, LP (Boardwalk), conducted an intensive cultural resources survey of the proposed Index 1-36 Replacement and Relocation Project (Project) located approximately 2.2 miles (mi) (3.5 kilometers [km]) northwest of Lindale in Smith County, Texas. The Project involves the replacement of approximately 930.0 feet (ft) (283.5 meters [m]) of 6-inch natural gas pipeline along Gulf South’s existing Index 1-36 pipeline via Horizontal Directional Drilling (HDD). Additionally, Gulf South intends to utilize approximately 0.9 mi (1.5 km) of temporary access roads to connect County Road (CR) 431 with the proposed HDD workspace location. Where possible, Gulf South intends to utilize existing pipeline corridors to facilitate temporary access to the HDD workspace for construction vehicles.

The proposed Project may require the usage of a Nationwide Permit (NWP) issued by the US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE). As such, portions of the Project may fall under the jurisdiction of the USACE. Additionally, as the Index 1-36 pipeline is regulated by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), cultural resources surveys were conducted for the Project in accordance with the provisions outlined in Boardwalk’s Blanket Environmental Clearance (effective January 2016 to December 2019). The survey was designed to inventory and assess cultural resources across the Project. These efforts involved both surface and subsurface archaeological survey conducted accordance with Section 106 of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA).

The workspace required for the HDD efforts measures approximately 3.1 acres in size. This workspace lies adjacent to the Gulf South Index 1-36 pipeline and includes both permanent and temporary workspaces. The access road measures approximately 0.9 mi (1.5 km) in length and approximately 25.0 ft (7.6 m) in width with a total acreage of 2.8 acres.

The area of potential effect (APE) measures approximately 5.9 acres with depths of impact extending to depths of 1.0 to 2.0 ft (0.3 to 0.6 m) within the temporary workspace and access road locations. Deep impacts (greater than 6.0 ft [1.8 m]) will only occur within Gulf South’s existing pipeline corridor at the 2.0 by 2.0 ft (0.6 by 0.6 m) diameter HDD drill locations.

To allow for flexibility in engineering design, Gulf South requested that Perennial complete an intensive cultural resources survey within an expanded Environmental Survey Area (ESA) for the Project. The total area surveyed within the Project ESA measures approximately 28.1 acres. Perennial conducted the intensive Phase I archaeological investigation within the boundaries of the Project ESA between July 5-8, 2016 and July 25-28, 2016. Jennifer L. Cochran served as the Principal Investigator (PI) for the Project and conducted the fieldwork with the assistance of Michael Maddox.

In total, 154 shovel tests were excavated across the entire ESA. The survey investigations resulted in the documentation of five newly recorded sites (41SM474, 41SM475, 41SM476, 41SM477, and 41SM478) and the revisit of site 41SM391 mapped within the Project ESA. These include one historic-age artifact scatter (41SM474), three Transitional Archaic/Early Woodland period open campsites (41SM475, 41SM476, and 41SM477), one multiple component site consisting of historic-age artifacts and prehistoric lithic debris (41SM478), and one historic-age farmstead (41SM391).

In regard to the revisit of site 41SM391, no evidence of any cultural materials or features were observed within surface or subsurface contexts along the portion of the Project ESA in proximity to site 41SM391. As such, it is Perennial’s opinion that site 41SM391 does not extend into the Project ESA and will not be impacted by any construction activities associated with the Project. No further work is recommended for site 41SM391 within the Project ESA.

Site 41SM474 consists of a late-nineteenth to mid-twentieth century historic artifact scatter composed of non-diagnostic materials, while site 41SM478 consists of a multiple component site represented by late-nineteenth to mid-twentieth artifact scatter intermixed with a scatter of prehistoric artifacts of an undetermined age. Since each of the sites was only delineated within the boundaries of the original Project ESA, the full extent of each site is unknown. As such, the overall NRHP eligibility status of each site is considered to be undetermined. However, an oral history account from the current landowner of the property on which sites 41SM474 and 41SM478 are located did not reveal that the sites are associated with any persons or events of historical significance. Based on the landowner interviews, these sites likely represent the remnants of short-term tenant occupations within an expansive plantation owned by the Bowdoin family. It is unlikely that additional deed or archival research would provide definitive information on the tenant families that occupied these areas. Additionally, based on the lack of intact structures or features and the lack of significant, intact cultural deposits, it is Perennial’s opinion that the portion of site 41SM474 within the Project ESA and the historic-age component of site 41SM478 within the Project ESA be considered noncontributing elements to the overall NRHP eligibility of the site. Based upon the lack of temporally diagnostic tools fragments or significant, intact prehistoric cultural deposits it is also Perennial’s opinion that the prehistoric component of 41SM478 be considered a noncontributing element to the overall NRHP eligibility of the site. No additional investigations are recommended on sites 41SM474 and 41SM478 within the boundaries of the original Project ESA. Due to a change in engineering design for the Project footprint, sites 41SM474 and 41SM478 no longer fall within the current Project footprint and will not be impacted by any construction activities associated with the Project.

Sites 41SM475, 41SM476, and 41SM477, all likely represent Transitional Archaic/Early Woodland period open campsites. In regards to site 41SM475, based upon the presence of temporally diagnostic tool fragments, in conjunction with prehistoric ceramic material, and the presence of buried deposits, it is Perennial’s opinion that the NRHP eligibility of site 41SM475 remains undetermined. In regards to site 41SM476, based upon the presence of temporally diagnostic tool fragments, prehistoric ceramic material, preserved floral and faunal remains and the presence of buried deposits, it also Perennial’s opinion that that the NRHP eligibility of site 41SM476 remains undetermined. It is unclear at this time if there are intact, features/occupation zones are present within unexcavated portions of either of these sites within the Project ESA. As such, Perennial recommends the avoidance and protection of the portion of sites 41SM475 and 41SM476 within the Project ESA until more comprehensive site delineation efforts or Phase II testing can be conducted on these sites.

In regard to site 41SM477, the site was only delineated within the boundaries of the Project ESA and the full extent of the site is unknown. As such, the overall NRHP eligibility status of the site is considered to be undetermined. However, based on the lack of intact cultural features and the lack of significant, intact cultural deposits, it is Perennial’s opinion that the portion of site 41SM477 within the Project ESA be considered a noncontributing element to the overall NRHP eligibility of the site. No additional investigations are recommended within the boundaries of the current Project ESA.

Due to Gulf South’s aggressive construction scheduling, Perennial consulted with the THC concerning interim clearance on a suitable strategy to avoid any impacts to sites 41SM475, 41SM476, and 41SM477. Gulf South intends to utilize 25.0 ft- (7.6-m) wide travel lanes for restricted access across the top of newly recorded site 41SM476. Gulf South also intends to place wooden timber construction matting across the surface of those travel lanes along the portion of site 41SM476 within the Project ESA in order to protect the subsurface deposits located on the site. Additionally, construction matting with be placed across the surface of a portion of the proposed HDD workspace (where the site extends into this location) and no subsurface activities will occur in any of these locations within the site boundary. Gulf South intends to place wooden timber construction matting across the surface of the portion of sites 41SM475 and 41SM477 within the Project ESA in order to protect the deposits located on these sites. Additionally, any vegetation removal necessary across any portions of these sites within the Project ESA will be removed by hand or removed at ground surface level, rather than pulled up from the ground in order to limit causing extensive ground disturbance to the sites.

Gulf South has provided three travel lane alternatives that traverse site 41SM476 in different locales and requested interim clearance on all three alternatives across the site. This avoidance plan was initially presented to the THC during a July 20, 2016 meeting with Perennial and Gulf South in order to obtain interim clearance to accommodate Gulf South’s necessarily aggressive construction schedule to relocate portions their Index 1-36 pipeline. The THC concurred with Gulf South’s timber matting strategy to protect the subsurface deposits associated with sites 41SM475, 41SM476, and 41SM477 on August 9, 2016 via an email correspondence. Since Gulf South is planning to avoid any impacts to these sites, no additional work is recommended at this time for sites 41SM475, 41SM476, and 41SM477 in conjunction with the current Project.

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