Archaeological Investigations at the Cook-Thompson Site

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Excavations (Archaeology) > Georgia > Brunswick.
Cook, Fred C.
In 1975, prehistoric ceramics dating to the Late Archaic, Woodland and Mississippian Periods were found in a garden at 807 Albany Street in urban Brunswick, Georgia. The city of Brunswick lies on the southern end of an old relic Pleistocene barrier island and today salt marshes are on its eastern, southern and western sides. After a lull of 38 years, this site was formally surveyed in May 2008. Shovel testing delineated the approximate site boundaries. Shovel testing was followed with the excavation of two block units. Recovered in these units was a large in situ deposit of late Woodland Kelvin Complicated Stamped sherds from the same vessel. The distribution of these sherds suggested that, other than a downward displacement, which was probably caused by bioturbation, the sherds had suffered little disturbance since their deposition. The only lithic artifact found was a tiny tertiary flake. All of the artifacts from the site were associated with an area of yellowish brown to brownish yellow, well-drained Cainhoy soil. No other site in the coastal region has been described as being so closely associated with a particular soil type. Since all three diverse cultures left behind similar artifacts and restricted their activities so closely to a localized deposit of Cainhoy soil, it is likely that they utilized the site in a similar way. The data acquired was evaluated in regard to possible hunting and mast collecting activities. The latter seems to best explain the artifacts found and their association with the dry, loose Cainhoy soil. Based on the common importance of acorns to Late Archaic, Woodland and Mississippian cultures and the modern prolific stands of live oak on the southern Brunswick peninsula, the Cook-Thompson site has been interpreted as a possible acorn processing location. Two shell artifacts were found that may have resulted from the on-site manufacture of shell ornaments.
South Georgia Archaeological Research Team