Caddo Archeology Journal
In June 2017, Jenna Bradley and Robert Cornett were boating down the Red River in northern Caddo Parish, Louisiana, when they noticed an unusual log protruding from a sandy bank near the town of Belcher. After realizing that it was a dugout canoe, they contacted the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries, and eventually word of the find was transmitted to state archaeologist Chip McGimsey at the Louisiana Division of Archaeology. The following day, Bradley and Cornett led Jeffrey Girard and Jameel Damlouji of the Louisiana Archaeological Society to the site. It was obvious that it was a dugout canoe of comparable size and form to one found in 1983 at the base of a steep cutbank on the east side of a now cut off channel of the Red River approximately 12 km (7 miles) downstream. At the time, the 1983 canoe was thought to be the largest prehistoric watercraft in the Southeastern United States measuring 9.35 m (or 30 ft. 8 inches) long and 56 cm (1 ft. 10 inches) in diameter. The newly discovered canoe is a little larger, measuring 10.2 m long (33.4 ft.) and approximately 60 cm (2.0 ft.) in diameter. Both boats have similar shapes with step-like seats carved into the ends, and both probably are made from cypress logs, although the wood of the recent find has not been identified with certainty.
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