Two Newly Discovered Maya Chert Tool Workshops in the Belize Valley: Results of the 2014 Surface Reconnaissance

Author(s): James Stemp; Kelsey Sullivan; Jaime Awe

Year: 2015


Few lithic workshops have been found in the Belize Valley of Western Belize. This paper presents the results of surface reconnaissance and debitage collection at two newly discovered chert tool workshops near the villages of Esperanza and Teakettle in the Cayo District of Western Belize. Each of these workshops consists of a single large mound of debitage and includes tools aborted or broken at various stages of manufacture. At both locations, the main tool types produced were oval bifaces and long, narrow bifaces. Based on comparisons to tool types and reduction techniques at other Maya production locations, such as Colha in Northern Belize and El Pilar in Western Belize, both the Esperanza and Teakettle mounds likely date to the Late Classic period (c. AD 600-800). The main sources of chert observed at these two workshops appear to be cobbles locally obtained from the nearby Belize River. Preliminary results indicate that the focus of these workshops was the manufacture of utilitarian tools for consumption by farming households distributed throughout the Belize Valley.

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Cite this Record

Two Newly Discovered Maya Chert Tool Workshops in the Belize Valley: Results of the 2014 Surface Reconnaissance. Kelsey Sullivan, James Stemp, Jaime Awe. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 397655)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections


Belize Lithics Maya

Geographic Keywords
Central America

Spatial Coverage

min long: -94.702; min lat: 6.665 ; max long: -76.685; max lat: 18.813 ;