Sunday, July 13, 2014

Week 8 Update

It's been a productive week here at Arcadia Mill as we continue to explore the western and southern boundaries of the basement. We were able to finish up excavations on multiple units as well as start several new ones. 

Students continued to excavate Unit 132 until the foundation of the brick wall was uncovered. As of now, we believe that this enclosed brick space is related to a multi-floor chimney. As new units placed are excavated within the vicinity, they will hopefully shed some light on this structure's purpose. 

Unit 132: End of Excavation

Unit 135 was opened at the very end of week 7 to uncover more of the structure exposed in Unit 132. We were able to track the continuation of the basement walls as well as reveal the remains of the original basement floor. The brick floor covered by wood panels was initially found in Unit 125 several weeks ago, and the continuation of the feature suggests that the basement was much larger than we originally predicted.

Students excavating Unit 135

Unit 135: End of Excavation

There were many interesting artifacts found within the second level of Unit 135 that relate to the kitchen space located to the north.

Artifacts from Unit 135

A large iron colander and bowl from Unit 135

Meanwhile, Unit 139 was opened along the western edge of the basement depression to track the continuation of the basement wall uncovered in Unit 135. Although the western wall does not appear to continue south, it is possible that the gap in the wall structure was a doorway of one of the basement rooms. 

Unit 139: Top of Level 3

Unit 137, which was also opened at the end of week 7, was extended by one meter in order to further investigate the wall structure exposed earlier in the week. The extension will allow us to determine whether the brick structure continues, or if it is a solitary wall. Many interesting artifacts have been recovered from the first unit of this level and can be seen below. 

Unit 137 Extended

Artifacts from Unit 137

Units 136 and 138 were both opened directly south of Units 132 and 135 with the hope of locating the southern edge of the basement wall. Because Unit 136 did not yield any structural features, it was terminated soon after being opened. Unit 138, unlike most of the other units, had a thick strata of clay that capped the natural deposit of the site. After the rest of the clay layer is removed, we will be able to determine if any brick structures are present within this unit. 

Profile view of Unit 138 showing the dense clay layer

Unit 136: End of Excavation

That's all for now, but next week will hopefully yield some exciting finds as we continue to search for the western and southern boundaries of the basement. 

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