Monthly Meeting
Trini Mendenhall Community Center, 1414 Wirt Road
Houston, TX 77055

When We Meet
Third Thursday of each month
Time: 6:30 pm - 8:45 pm

For meeting information
Email: lindagorski@cs.com Phone: 713-557-1496

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MONTHLY HAS MEETING MARCH 18th, 2021.

The Dimond Knoll Project in Perspective: A New Path for Southeast Texas Prehistory - Dr. Jason W. Barrett

Gary Pinkerton
The next monthly meeting of the Houston Archeological Society will be held on Thursday, March 18th via ZOOM. Dr. Jason W. Barrett, TxDOT Archeologist, will present a program highlighting the Dimond Knoll Project, a large prehistoric archeological site along Cypress Creek. Many of the HAS members who worked with Dr. Barrett for over a year on the Dimond Knoll project will be interested in the results of his extensive study of the artifacts recovered at the site. HAS members will receive a link to the ZOOM meeting shortly. The business meeting will start at 7:00 but we will open the meeting to HAS members at 6:30 to offer everyone 30 minutes to socialize. Barrett’s program will begin 7:15 p.m. on Zoom and will also be livestreamed starting at 7:15 p.m. on the HAS YouTube channel at https://youtu.be/29aSAT8Vl-U.

According to Barrett, Texas archeologist DeeAnn Story once wrote that it “is not an exaggeration (or much of an exaggeration) to describe the Archaic chronologies in [Southeast Texas] as among the least well established in North America.” (1990:213). A clearer understanding of the region’s prehistoric importance has been reached through the Dimond Knoll project, largely due to the partnership developed between TxDOT, Coastal Environments, Inc., and the Houston Archeological Society.

Artifacts of exotic origin, or that reference extra-regional traditions, have been recorded periodically in archeological deposits across southeast Texas. Stone tools from the sites of Dimond Knoll and Smithers Lake, located in Harris and Fort Bend Counties respectively, provide clear evidence of long-distance movement of people and ideas in prehistory. Remarkably, both the Dimond Knoll and Smithers Lake sites show evidence of having been repeatedly revisited over a period of more than eleven thousand years. Included among the 1330 projectile points recorded within their combined assemblages are artifact types commonly associated with the Ohio and Mississippi River Valleys. The prominence of exotic types at both sites peaks during periods when bison are present in the region.

In his presentation Barrett proposes to show a reconstructed network of indigenous footpaths and trade trails to explain the presence of exotic material culture in Southeast Texas, relying on data collected from journals, diaries, and other records of the 17th and 18th century Spanish entradas, as well as from 19th century maps. This new research indicates that native long-distance trade trails had extraordinary time depth, integrated with riverine trade networks, and spread across vast geographic areas. He will also show several exotic projectile point types identified in the region, and also present a number of newly defined types. Barrett has provided an excellent handout to accompany this presentation that you can find on the HAS website at this link https://www.txhas.org/PDF/dimond%20knoll/HAS%202021%20-%20Dimond%20Knoll.pdf.

Jason Barrett received his Ph.D. from Texas A&M University in 2004, joining the TxDOT Environmental Affairs Division's Archeological Studies Branch the following year. For TxDOT, he is currently the managing archeologist for the data recovery excavations at Frost Town in Houston, as well as principal investigator at Dimond Knoll. He also recently directed the Texas Archeological Society’s Annual Field School over three consecutive seasons in Columbus (2014 through 2016), and later served as the Society's President. Jason also volunteers as a professional advisor to the Houston Archeological Society. He has authored numerous journal articles, book chapters, and technical research reports, and has taught courses in archeology and cultural anthropology at Texas A&M University, Baylor University, Rice University, and Blinn College. Jason has lived in Texas since 1995 and in Houston since 2012, and will be moving to Toronto, Canada in April 2021.

For more information about this meeting, email HAS President Linda Gorski at lindagorski@cs.com.

HAS JOURNAL 143 NOW AVAILABLE

HAS Journal No. 143 is now available. The Journal Number 143, is an issue dedicated exclusively to archeology in the Western United States. This issue highlights the widespread interests of members of the Houston Archeological Society which cover not just the Gulf Coast and Texas, but many areas outside the state including the Western U.S. The papers included in this issue cover sites and archeological materials in West Texas, New Mexico, Colorado, Nevada, and California. These papers include research on material that ranges from potentially before Clovis, to the Paleoindian, Archaic, Late Prehistoric, and Historic periods. Complimentary copies may be obtained by HAS members at the monthly meetings. Non-HAS members may purchase copies through Amazon.com. Go to the HAS Journals Section for a link to the publication on the Amazon.com website. Alternatively, copies may be purchased at the HAS Monthly Meetings.

The Carrollton Phase Archaic: A Redefinition of the Chronology, Composition and Aerial Distribution of the Early Archaic Horizon Along the Trinity River, Texas NOW AVAILABLE

Report #35 The Carrollton Phase Archaic: A Redefinition of the Chronology, Composition and Aerial Distribution of the Early Archaic Horizon Along the Trinity River, Texas by Wilson "Dub" Crook. This publication is available free to members of the Society. Members should make sure that they collect their copy of this report at the next monthly meeting. If you wish to purchase additional copies then you can find them on amazon.com. You can find the appropriate links in our List section.

To learn more about the history behind our archeological society contact Publicity/Outreach: publicoutreach@txhas.org.