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US Route 301 Archaeology Update

Written on: June 17th, 2014 in Archaeology Updates US301

Identification and AMS Radiocarbon Dating of Charcoal and Botanic Samples From the Elkins B Site (7NC-G-174) in New Castle County, Delaware

By Peter Kovacik with assistance from R. A. Varney of Paleo Research Institute, Golden, Colorado for Hunter Research, Inc.

 This report provides carbon 14 dates for five prehistoric pits features from the Elkins B site excavated by Hunter Research, Inc.

 Context 514 dates to the Middle Archaic Period

Context 518 dates to the Woodland I – Middle Woodland Period

Context 520 dates to the end of the Woodland I – Middle Woodland Period

Context 536 dates to the end of the Woodland II Period – Early Contact Period

Context 528 dates from circa AD 1730 to AD 1810

Of note:  Context 528 which dates to circa 1730 to 1810 was located approximately 40 feet west of the Elkins B cellar hole which dates from the mid-1720’s through the early 1730’s falls within the early part of the range but contained no historic artifacts and in fact exhibited all of the characteristics of a prehistoric storage pit.  Preliminary examination of the material culture has suggested the occupants of Elkins B may have included an assimilated Native American.  This site contains very few subsurface features, so perhaps if a Native American was living there a combination of European and traditional Native American traits were employed at this site.  Below is a table with the raw and calibrated data from the five pit features.   

RADIOCARBON RESULTS FOR SAMPLES FROM

THE ELKINS B SITE (7NC-G-174) IN NEW CASTLE COUNTY, DELAWARE

 

Sample

No.

 Sample

Identification

  

AMS 14C Date*

 1-sigma Calibrated Date (68.2%)  2-sigma Calibrated Date (95.4%)  δ13C**

(o/oo)

 

PRI-14-030-528

 Quercus – Erythrobalanus group charcoal  188 ± 22

RCYBP

 290–260;

220–140;

20–(‑11)

CAL yr. BP

 300–260;

220–140;

30–(‑11)

CAL yr. BP

 -25.1
 AD 1660–1690

AD 1730–1810

AD 1930–1960

 AD 1650–1690

AD 1730–1810

AD 1920–1960

 

PRI-14-030-536

 Quercus – Erythrobalanus group charcoal  319 ± 21

RCYBP

 430–350;

340–310

CAL yr. BP

 460–300

CAL yr. BP

 -25.5
 AD 1520–1600

AD 1610–1640

 AD 1490–1650
 

PRI-14-030-520

 Carya nutshell, charred  1479 ± 22

RCYBP

 1390–1340

CAL yr. BP

 1405–1315

CAL yr. BP

 -24.5
 AD 560–610  AD 545–635
 

PRI-14-030-518

 Quercus -Leucobalanus group charcoal  1955 ± 22

RCYBP

 1930–1875

CAL yr. BP

 1970–1860; 1850–1820

CAL yr. BP

 -26.4
 AD 20–75  20 BC–AD 90

AD 100–130

 

PRI-14-030-514

 Carya nutshell, charred  6328 ± 25

RCYBP

 7310–7240; 7200–7170

CAL yr. BP

 7320–7170

CAL yr. BP

 -24.3
 5360–5290 BC 5250–5220 BC  5370–5220 BC

 * Reported in radiocarbon years at 1 standard deviation measurement precision (68.2%),

corrected for δ13C.

 ** δ13C values are measured by AMS during the 14C measurement.  The AMS-δ13C values

are used for the 14C calculation and should not be used for dietary or

paleoenvironmental interpretations.




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