Discoveries of Feature 904 at the Bains Gap Native American Village Site


Discoveries of Feature 904 at the Bains Gap Native American Village Site



Faculty Mentor

Kathryn Catlin, Chemistry & Geosciences


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1:30-1:40pm | Houston Cole Library, 11th Floor


Since 1999, Jacksonville State University archaeology has been excavating at the Bains Gap Native American village site (1CA625), under the supervision of Dr. Harry Holstein and more recently Dr. Kathryn Catlin. The site is located near Anniston Alabama, southeast of the former Fort McClellan site and on the west side of Choccolocco Creek. This land is traditionally Muscogee Creek Territory. Artifacts collected throughout the many years of excavation seasons show evidence of prehistoric people inhabiting the area from the Paleoindian (15,000 BC- 8,500 BC) through Mississippian (700 AD- 1540 AD) periods. Features found show evidence of ditches, walls, post holes, and pits of various sizes. There are two stockade ditches which are parallel to each other encircling a portion of the village. The outer ditch, closest to Choccolocco Creek, has a parallel stockade post line. Based on the contents found in the ditches, the inner ditch is thought to be older than the outer ditch with the associated parallel post line. My work focused on feature 904, which is the inner ditch. This feature is extensive and was excavated over many years, from 2011 until 2018. By studying this ditch, I hoped to figure out what time period it was used and what it was used for. While studying the contents found in this ditch, I uncovered some interesting finds and data. Some of the finds include a piece of a Mississippian era face water bottle, a pipe, and different types of bifaces. The most common pottery temper found was limestone and the second highest was sand temper. There was very few shell and metasiltstone tempered pottery. The artifacts and the abundance of limestone tempered pottery led me to believe that the ditch is Woodland era and could have been used for defensive measures or water collection during that time. The site needs to be further excavated to better understand the use of the inner ditch and how it relates to the outer one.


student research, chemistry and geosciences, archaeology


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Earth Sciences

Discoveries of Feature 904 at the Bains Gap Native American Village Site