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Agency

Journal of Northeast Texas Archaeology

DOI

https://doi.org/10.21112/.ita.2016.1.98

Abstract

The Wollard #2 site (41HE22) was first identified by Leroy Johnson, Jr. and Edward B. Jelks in August 1957 during their survey of then proposed Blackburn Crossing Reservoir, now Lake Palestine, in Henderson County, Texas. The site was described by Johnson as located in an old cultivated field on the high ground directly to the west of Caney Creek and the Neches River floodplain, is one of the most prolific sites located in the reservoir area…The midden soil at the site extends to a depth of 16 inches and is rich in animal and shell remains as well as stone flakes and artifact fragments.

When Southern Methodist University (SMU) returned to the proposed Lake Palestine area in 1969 to complete data recovery investigations at sites to be inundated by the lake, they chose to work at the Wollard #2 site, which they renamed the Mitchell site (X41HE17). X is the SMU designation used for site numbering. Review of project area maps by Texas Archeological Research Laboratory (TARL) staff indicated that the Mitchell site was plotted in the same area as the Wollard #2 site, and thus the Mitchell site also has the 41HE22 trinomial.

However, an examination of Anderson and a comparison to Johnson’s site map indicates that the SMU investigations at the Wollard #2/Mitchell site—which consisted primarily of systematic surface collections and the excavation of scattered 1 x 3 m units—unfortunately did not encompass any of the well preserved Caddo midden deposits described by Johnson. Rather, the SMU work was located uphill on the landform from the midden, in areas with sparse Caddo deposits. The SMU work recovered only 73 sherds in extensive surface collections on the landform and only another 361 sherds from the excavation of 36 1 x 3 m units in several areas of the Mitchell site. The brief work by Johnson and Jelks recovered almost as many sherds as did the entire SMU investigations at the site. Furthermore, no midden deposits were identified in the SMU work and only four pieces of animal bone were recovered; hardly evidence of a midden “rich in animal” bones as described by Johnson.

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

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