Mine waste excavation beneath the western road encountered historical
artifacts at the intersection of Pomo Street and the road that leads to the cul-
de-sac. The feature consisted of black soil covering an area ~3 meters in
diameter. The feature area was flagged and its boundary spray-painted to
keep construction workers and equipment out.
The mine waste had been
removed and it was
anticipated that the feature
would be protected and
preserved by the placement
of clean fill and road
construction. With the
understanding that the
feature would be protected,
only two small soil samples were recovered and processed. One 5-gal bucket
sample was recovered and processed through ¼” mesh. In addition a 2,000cc
sample was recovered and screened through 1/8” mesh. No attempt was made
to determine the depth of the
A graph of all material recovered
from the 5-gallon sample (top
graph) indicates that
“EuroAmerican other” (metal,
leather, building material, etc.)
made up most of the sample by
weight. This was followed by
Euro American glass, Euro
American ceramics, stone tool
manufacturing debitage, organic
material, Asian ceramics,
buttons, and bone.
The 2,000cc sample processed through the 1/8” screen had a slightly
different breakdown with Euro American glass having the highest weight.
Site maintained as a public service by Archaeological Research, PO Box 1353, Lucerne, CA 95458.
|History and Prehistory of Lake County
Glass items included three olive green fragments of wine bottles, three
brown glass fragments of beer bottles and one unidentifiable bottle fragment.
Euro American Ceramics
Ceramics included fragments
of three cups, one wash basin,
and two unknown items.
One piece of a Bamboo ware
rice bowl was recovered.
A single “prosser” button was recovered. It was a plain, 4-hole, sew-through
type with a 16-line size. In addition to manufactured items, a small amount
of organic material was recovered. These included some unidentifiable
shell, mammal bone, charcoal, and black walnuts. The amount of these
materials was too small to allow any meaningful analysis.
Feature 1 Interpretation
Even if we didn’t have a 1906 photo showing the Elem Village, it would be
possible to give an estimate of the age of Feature 1 based on the age of the
artifacts recovered. Glass recovered from Feature 1 included only hand-
blown bottles, indicating manufacture before 1917. The Asian bamboo ware
rice bowl fragment is a style that was only in use in California between 1850
and 1920. This piece suggests that some members of the household were of
All Euro American ceramics were plain white glazed pieces of either
stoneware or cream ware (popular during the mid to late 1800’s). The type
of material recovered suggests that Feature 1 was a deposit of general
household trash dating just before or just after 1900. The clearly defined
size and dark stain to the soil, coupled with the fact that there was depth to
the deposit suggest that this was a filled trash-pit feature rather than a
sheet (surface only) trash deposit.