Posted by: Nathaniel Mich | July 11, 2008

Extramural Testing: July 11, 2008

A lot has changed in our trench since last week. What we thought was a square pithouse turned out to be another circular Basketmaker III (AD 600-800) pithouse, the fourth our crew found this season. You can see that pithouse in the lower left corner of the photograph. Even though it wasn’t the square pithouse we had hoped for, it was exciting to find that parts of the wall are still covered with the original plaster! To the right of the pithouse are a series of four large postholes and a larger pit. Because these features are so far away from the pithouse, we’re not really sure what their significance is. It’s possible that they are associated with an unknown structure or that they are part of a ramada, or shaded outdoor workspace.

Do you see the wall in the northern part of the unit? That is the edge of the jacal roomblock that one of the other crews has been excavating. It certainly was a bit of a surprise to see the roomblock reach that far east, and its increased size means we may have to reconsider its role in the community.

Today was our last day of excavations. We cleaned up all our units for final photos and will probably start backfilling this afternoon. We never did find any square pithouses, but knowing where they’re not is important too. It’ll be a little sad to watch the results of the past five weeks disappear under our backdirt, but it is the best way to protect and preserve these sites for the future.

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