Unfortunately, Friday March 6th ended up being our last day of field school due to in-person classes being cancelled the rest of the semester because of COVID-19. I plan on taking this class again next spring because I am very sad the excavation was cut short and I did not get to continue learning all the field school skills this class intended to teach.
I had been assigned to Unit 14 with Robert and DuVal all semester, and the previous week we stopped excavating midway through Level 6. We started Level 6 at 100 cmbd (centimeters below datum) and ended it at 110 cmbd, as we had planned to make all levels (after getting deeper than undisturbed dirt) a thickness of 10 centimeters. After finishing Level 6 I realized I had been doing the sketches for each level wrong. The sketch for a level is supposed to be what the unit looks like at the end of the level, but I had been drawing what it looks like at the beginning. Luckily there is an easy way to go back and fix this error, as the sketch I drew for the beginning of Level 4, can be transferred on paperwork to represent the end of Level 3, as they are the same thing.
After we closed out Level 6 and finished paperwork, we started Level 7 and had time to finish it and close it out at 120 cmbd. In Level 7 we found a Savannah River projectile point in context! This was the first projectile point we had found in context in Unit 14. Earlier in the semester we had found a Savannah River point and a Morrow Mountain point both in slump, that likely came from dirt that would have been part of Unit 14 if it didn’t collapse. As we got deeper into the unit we started finding bigger pieces of fire cracked rock, more, and bigger flakes, but less ceramics. Level 7 did not have any ceramics.
While Robert, Duval, and I were excavating Unit 14, Dr. White was clearing dirt downstairs, to make it possible to excavate the “basement” in the following weeks. The basement is the area in the ground deeper than the floor of the “downstairs.”
“Upstairs” in Level 3 of Unit 15, a massive Yadkin Point was found. Al Goodyear, an archaeologist who discovered site 38FA608 along with Dr. White, was in class this day and said it was probably the biggest Yadkin point ever found in South Carolina. Overall the day was very exciting, mostly due to finding the Savannah River and Yadkin points. However, this class period was a very unexpected and unfortunate end to the semester.