Burial 2

Type: Burial


 Length: 3.1 ft

 Width: 2.6 ft

 Depth: 2.1 ft

Volume: 16.93 ft3

Area: 8.06 ft2

Excavation minimap

Related Contexts:

Sq. 270R90

Sq. 280R90

Burial 2


by H. Trawick Ward

Pit Morphology

Burial 2 was located near the southeast end of the cemetery at 279.3R85.8. The pit was visible at the base of the plowzone as a rectangular stain comprised of a medium-to-dark brown gritty sandy fill with a large amount of charcoal. A thin mottled orange collar was evident along the northwest and southwest edge of the stain. The pit was oriented northwest-southeast, measured 3.1 ft long and 2.6 ft wide, and had a rectangular plan. It extended to a depth of 2.1 ft below the base of the plowzone. Two postholes, one along the southwest edge and the other midway along the northeast edge, intruded the pit edge. The sides were straight, except for the northeast wall, which was undercut to create a bell-shaped bulge at the bottom of the pit. The pit bottom was flat and smooth, which suggests that metal implements were used in its excavation.

The fill was excavated as two separate zones. The top zone (Zone 1) consisted of a brown gritty or sandy humic soil that was rich in refuse, including potsherds, some animal bone, and carbonized plant remains. This zone was very similar to Zone 1 in Burial 1 except that it was not as rich in animal bone and was thicker (extending about 1 ft below the base of plowzone). The bottom of this zone was mottled and contained lenses of ash and charcoal. Zone 2 was a mottled yellow clay containing some charcoal that extended to the bottom of the pit. It was roughly 1.5 ft thick.

Burial Deposition

The burial was that of a subadult of indeterminate sex who was 7.5 +/- 2 years old at death. The skeleton was loosely flexed and lying on the right side, with the skull oriented to the southeast. The arms were bent with the hands lying in front of the face.

Grave Goods

A bundle of artifacts believed to have been contained in a beaded bag was located on the left side of the chest. That bundle contained a Jew's harp, several pieces of lead shot, three lead buttons, and three unidentified fragments of iron. Several small white glass beads, thought to have been sewn on the bag, were located in the same area. A bone-handled knife also may have been part of the bundle. Between this cluster of artifacts and the pit wall was a small, Fredricks Check Stamped pottery vessel. The pot was lying on its side and contained a dark stain around the orifice, perhaps the residue of food originally placed in the vessel. Next to the back of the skull lay a pewter porringer. Another bone-handled knife and a cluster of small shell beads were observed adjacent to the wrists on the right side of the burial. Large columella beads were found in the neck area.