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Agency

Texas Historical Commission

Abstract

Sphere 3 Environmental, Inc. (Sphere 3) conducted an intensive pedestrian cultural resources survey of approximately 5.1 hectares (12.7 acres) of land designated as the Area of Potential Effects (APE) on January 31 through February 1, 2019, in response to water system improvements proposed by Bear Creek Special Utility District (SUD). The project area is located on the east side of Lake Road, the north side of Moore Lane, and both sides of Texas State Highway 78. The facilities tracts and waterline are owned by Bear Creek SUD. The waterline will be owned by Bear Creek SUD. The cultural resources survey was conducted under Texas Antiquities Permit #8745 to identify properties eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places (NRHP) or listing as a State Antiquities Landmark (SAL). A total of 64 shovel tests were excavated across the project area. Two archaeological localities were identified, Site 41COL316 and Isolated Find #1. Site 41COL316 was identified as a multi-component indeterminate prehistoric and indeterminate historic low-density artifact scatter in a highly disturbed cultivated upland flat terrace. Prehistoric artifacts recovered from the site consisted of five lithic fragments exhibiting minimal cultural modification. Historic artifacts, likely scattered from domestic activities at a nearby residence, consist of two chronologically diagnostic amethyst bottle glass shards. Additional cultural objects collected included: a clam shell fragment, several amber, aqua, and colorless bottle glass fragments evaluated as likely greater than 50 years old, and several iron objects. Recent cultural objects (less than 50 years old) within this scatter include amber bottle fragments with paper beer labels attached thereunto, contemporary store label affixed to lighter, and amber glass shards exhibiting no patina, wear, of other signs of aging and are attributed as discarded materials from the occupants of vehicles traversing the road forming the site’s east boundary. The site’s integrity has been destroyed by many years of use for cultivating row crops since prior to the 1960s. Isolated Find #1 consists of a buried single translucent colorless bottle glass shard, for which site delineation revealed no additional historic cultural association. Project records and artifacts were curated at the Texas Archeological Research Laboratory (TARL) in Austin, Texas. The site and Isolated Find #1 have been evaluated as not eligible for inclusion in the NRHP or for listing as a SAL. Sphere 3 therefore recommends that construction of water system improvements proceed as planned without further cultural resource investigations.

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