Anthropology 2AC Research Paper
Native American shellmounds are one of the most historically rich sites still around today. The San Francisco Bay Area is one of the last places with this history available. The West Berkeley Shellmound, trinomial designation CA-ALA-307, is an example of one of these rare sites. This shellmound is located at Second Street and Hearst Avenue in Berkeley, California and is one of the last shellmounds to line the shore of the San Francisco Bay (Wallace 1975:1). Due to the large removal of the shellmound through out the years, for the building of paved streets, railroad tracks, and two factories, it is near impossible to estimate the exact size of the shellmound itself (Wallace 1975:1). In 1975, the shellmound’s dimensions were 45’x100’ in length and width. However, at one time it was estimated to stand fifteen feet above the ground and three feet below it, with dimensions of up to 350’x600’ in length and width. In 1950, a large-scale excavation of the mound began. Although a lot of the mound was no longer present because of its location in between two buildings, the excavation was still successful due to a fair amount of sampling that was recovered from the remnants of the mound and preserved.
This shellmound was separated into two distinct areas, the North end and the South end. Totaled, these two areas represented a combined area of about 1,175 square feet. The main excavation site was located at the South end trench and was dug down to a depth ranging from nine to eighteen feet, depending on the thickness and deposit in the strata. The North end trench held a ten-foot square pit that was cut through a layer of limestone (Wallace 1975:8). This cut was incredibly necessary in order to reach the sterile soil layer underneath the midden. This midden was, in total, 14,000 cubic feet and was tediously measured in twelve-inch increments (Wallace 1975:8).
Many different artifacts were found at the site; about 3.412 man-made...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document