Surveying the Landscape: Surface Surveys as an Archaeological Technique

By Caitlin Gulihur

Caitlin surveying her survey area

Caitlin surveying her survey area

While what happens during and after excavations of archaeological sites are popular subjects of previous PAST posts, this post deals with a different type of archaeological work – the survey. Surveys are useful for both finding unrecorded sites and to answer research questions about large-scale issues, such as landscape use. Survey work presents its own unique rewards and challenges, some of which I became familiar with during the course of gathering data for my Master’s thesis. Continue reading

A behind the scenes look at the Spring Lake Data Recovery Analysis

By Amy Reid

Lab tables cluttered with artifacts, scales, digital calipers, coffee cups, Excel spreadsheets and to-do lists that seem to get longer-not shorter. The analysis phase of an archaeological project can look more like chaos than science, but in reality there is a method — or methodology rather — to the madness. This post aims to describe the various analyses we have conducted and are planning to perform on the data recovered from our 2014 excavations at the Spring Lake Site. You will also get a sneak peak at some of the results available to date.

Figures 1-3: What analysis looks like

Figures 1-3: What analysis looks like

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Using 3D Printing for Replication Experiments

Guest Post by Charles A. Speer

We have been working on a method to create replicas of artifacts that we can perform experiments on; such as reducing a stone tool preform into its final shape, be it a projectile point, knife, scraper, etc.. In order to accomplish this we have developed a proof of concept method that we hope to expand into many areas of research in the future for the Department of Anthropology at Texas State, the Center for Archaeological Studies (CAS), and the Prehistory Research Project (PRP). Continue reading