By Beth K. McCord, Leslie L. Bush, Donald R. Cochran, Alison Hadley and Tanya Peres
Prepared for the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology, Indiana Department of Natural Resources. Reports of Investigation 65, Archaeological Resources Management Service, Ball State University.
PDF of Report, Redacted Version
The Archaeological Resources Management Service conducted a FY2004 Historical Preservation Fund Grant to deconstruct and redefine the Albee Phase. The project involved the systematic survey of agricultural land within the White River Valley in Hamilton County, limited testing of site 12-H-993 and a review of previously collected information concerning the Albee Phase. The archaeological survey documented 40 new and 8 previously recorded sites and recovered over 1200 artifacts. Diagnostic artifacts ranged in age from the Middle/Late Archaic (3700 BC) to the Historic (late 20th century) period. The dominant occupation of the White River floodplain was from the Late Woodland/Prehistoric period. The test excavations at site 12-H-993 provided a wealth of information on the Late Woodland/Prehistoric era. Thirteen features were encountered during the testing and nine were excavated. The Albee Phase occupation was very minor and only a few artifacts could be definitively related to this phase. Radiocarbon dates place the occupation between AD 1030 and 1420 (2-sigma calibration). In spite of the paucity of new information concerning the Albee Phase derived from the survey and testing portion of this project, problems in defining the Albee Phase in terms of geographic extent, artifacts, chronology, and relationships to other archaeological manifestations were addressed. In addition, data from 12-H-993 allowed for a brief review of the nature of the Oliver Phase. The dominant occupation contained Bowen series ceramics (Dorwin 1971), one of the two ceramic traditions considered to be part of the Oliver Phase (Dorwin 1971; McCullough 1991, 2000). The lack of Oliver series ceramics (Helman 1950), a Fort Ancient style, from this site raised questions about the current characterization of the Oliver Phase. Current perceptions of the nature of the Albee and Oliver phases were reviewed and suggestions for future research were proposed.