Simms Creek Site (41LM113)

Ongoing Long-term Archaeological Research Project

Simms Creek (41LM113)

The Simms Creek site (41LM113) lies in the Lampasas Cut Plains and is full of surprises. Once thought to represent an early Late Prehistoric bison hunting camp – or even a bison jump – predating the Toyah phase, radiocarbon dates on hearth charcoal indicate a historic date sometime between 1660 and 1780. The very large animal bones once thought to belong to bison, have now been identified as cattle, supporting the late C14 dates. Some of the bones show clear spiral fracturing and/or were recovered from between hearth stones, so they are unlikely to be from a modern animal.

Partially excavated burned rock pavement. Note rocks in upper part of photo that have eroded downslope. Click image to enlarge.
Contour map showing location of 41LM113 and possible bison jump. Click image to enlarge.

The artifact assemblage contains elements of the Toyah toolkit with bone-tempered pottery and tear-drop end scrapers, but as with the Wilson site (41SS186) 20 miles to the west, the site lacks Perdiz points. The arrow point styles are somewhat diverse but could be typed as Alba or Bonham, types thought to have gone out of use around AD 1200. The points could also represent much latter forms from other regions and therefore be more in accord with the radiocarbon dates.

LUAS plans to return to the site to rule out the presence of earlier components (occupations), search for more evidence of historic occupation, and investigate the possible bison jump area which could explain any multiple use of the area.

LUAS members excavating hearth area of 41LM113 in summer 2016. Click image to enlarge.
Click image to enlarge.

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