Tyler House Field School 2017 Completed

I've finally made it through a long summer of writing! I will hopefully have news to share about how that is going soon, but right now I am feeling very guilty that I haven't posted photos from our field school in May.  So...It was awesome! When you mix the best group of students, wonderful landowners, and good weather, great things can happen!

In case you haven't seen my other posts, we had our first archaeological field school at Texas A&M University Central Texas this May 2017 at the O.T. Tyler house in Mound, Texas.

Inside the house near the interior wall

After setting up some canopies to deal with the intense sun, we were able to excavate both inside the house ruin itself and in the area outside but near the home which we suspected was an outdoor kitchen. Here are the photos!

Canopies protecting units and providing shade inside the house. The wall to left is the largest remaining exterior wall. 

This photo shows some of our units by the summer kitchen area.

The canopies struggled under the wind but overall we only lost one out of four. That canopy was destroyed by cows who left us some presents. We were later calling them cow-prolites! You can also see where the grass is flattened in the above photo the remnants of a rock foundation. Towards the end of the project we excavated by that wall to see how far down it extended and were surprised what we found! Back to that later.

Jenn and John screening fill by the rock foundation wall. 

A selfie with Angie! We were so excited to find this partially melted plate in the first unit inside the house.

By the end of the first week we were finding artifacts everywhere. Inside the house and out. Generally inside the house we found home goods (ceramics, furniture hardware, buttons, etc.) along with what felt like tons of nails and glass. Inside the house there was a well defined lens of ash and many items were damaged by fire, consistent with the fact that the house did undergo a major fire.

Hannah in a unit inside the house. The rocks surrounding the unit were previously in that hole, having fallen during the destruction of the house during the fire and its deterioration afterwards. 

Jenn and Monika in the same unit. This was close to our final day on the project! To the upper left you can see where the rocks are stacked making one of the hearths of the house. 

Lonnie filling out some all important paperwork, Indiana Jones style.

The foundation wall that kept going and going...Jenn and John couldn't make it to the bottom in the time we had. If we come back we want to investigate this wall further!

A photo of Karleigh when we found the plate. It was a big deal! 

More units inside the house, I thought this one was a good shot of all our tools. That Estwing Geo Paleo pick was my favorite! You can also see the layer of grey ash that is peppered on the surface. 

We stayed on time and on track for the project and were sad to go!! We did spend some more time in the "lab," or rather a classroom back on campus at TAMUCT, washing and labeling and cataloging.

Our artifacts have been sent off for analysis to be included as part of a master's thesis. I hope to update you on that when I have more info, but until then I'll share two more photos.

The plate! It doesn't look much better cleaned up but that broken piece is still firmly melted on and the mottling in color is partially due to fire damage. 

I'm still wondering exactly what this is! We think it's the door to a cast iron stove. If you've seen one like it, let me know!
I hope you've enjoyed our photos! I hope to get back to posting more regularly soon so I may do some more catch up posts. Thanks for visiting!


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