We are pleased to announce the publication of a terrific new article authored by J. David Kilby and Laura Hronec entitled:
Evaluating the Integrity of Blackwater Draw’s Locality X: The Role of Wind in the Formation of a Late Prehistoric Site on the Southern High Plains
Locality X is a diffuse scatter which consists primarily of more than 1,000 tiny lithic artifacts distributed throughout a massive stratum of eolian sand adjacent to a lunette southeast of Blackwater Draw Locality 1. The discovery of a single side-notched projectile point along with radiocarbon dates indicate that this newly discovered locality may represent a Late Prehistoric camp associated with the prehistoric springs that characterize the site. As such, it would represent the first discrete Late Prehistoric locality identified at the Blackwater Draw site; however, questions arose regarding the assemblage’s validity as a primary site of human activity. The unusually small artifact sizes and their location on the landscape raised the possibility that Locality X represents a secondary accumulation of size-sorted artifacts originating from the multiple archaeological localities lying upwind along the margins of the pond, redeposited in an aggrading lunette feature. Particle size analysis and wind tunnel experiments were carried out to test this hypothesis. Results indicate that, while the site has clearly been reworked by wind, eolian processes alone do not account for the accumulation of the artifacts, and the site appears to represent a primary location of cultural activity. The study generated new information relevant to understanding wind transport of small artifacts as well as confirming the existence of a new locality at the Blackwater Draw site.
Click on the title above to be taken directly to the article where you may either read or download a digital copy of this graphic rich research paper.
Watch for this to appear as our lead-off article in the full J.T.A.H. Volume 6 (2020).