Archeological Investigations at Great Basin National Park: Testing and Site Recording in Support of the General Management Plan

Author(s): Susan J. Wells

Year: 1993


Test excavations undertaken to determine the archeological significance of six sites in Great Basin National Park are reported here. Planned development outlined in the General Management Plan may impact one or more of these sites. Four of the sites are in the Baker Guard Station parcel adjacent to the town of Baker and two are in Lehman Flats, an area adjacent to Lehman Creek and north of the park entrance road. Test units and backhoe trenches disturbed less than 2 percent of any site's surface.

Subsurface deposits are present at all sites and intact features were uncovered at two of the Baker Guard Station sites.

Artifacts diagnostic of the Paleoindian, Archaic, Fremont and Shoshone cultures were recovered. Ceramics and projectile points were identified; chipped stone and ground stone artifacts were examined. Other materials recovered include beads, a worked crystal and shaped schist artifacts. Results from specialized analyses indicate that preservatiou of faunal remains, paleobotanical material and pollen is good. X-ray fluorescence of obsidian artifacts provides interesting data about the sources of the obsidian. Radiocarbon dates, obtained from two hearths and a fire-cracked-rock cluster, and relative dates, from obsidian hydration analysis, support the interpretation of both Archaic and Fremont period occupations.

Management recommendations and a plan for data recovery based on the testing results are presented.

GRBA 1992B

Eight historic periods sites at Great Basin National Park were recorded and assessed for archeological significance according to criterion d of the National Register criteria. The sites recorded are St. Lawrence Mine-East, St. Lawrence Mine-South, Lincoln Canyon Mine/Tunnel, Pole Canyon Adit-East, Shoshone Trail, Headquarters Stone House and wagon remains on both Timber Creek and Baker Creek. Official Nevada State site numbers were issued for all of these sites. Only two of the sites recorded in 1992 were determined archeologically significant st. Lawrence Mine-East and St. Lawrence Mine-South.

Additional recording was conducted at five historic period sites recorded previously. Artifact inventory and elevation drawings were undertaken at the Johnson Lake Mining Complex. Five miles of the Osceola Ditch were surveyed; the remains of flumes, a camp and a staging area were recorded. A 20-acre parcel adjacent to the Pole Canyon Safe was examined for associated remains with negative results. Historic period trash in the vicinity of Rhodes Cabin and the Lehman Aqueduct was recorded.

Summaries of archeological significance and site condition are presented. Appropriate cultural resource themes and themes from the Nevada Historic Preservation Plan are listed. Management recommendations and suggestions for further projects are discussed.

Cite this Record

Archeological Investigations at Great Basin National Park: Testing and Site Recording in Support of the General Management Plan. Susan J. Wells. Publications in Anthropology ,64. Tucson, Arizona: Western Archeological and Conservation Center. 1993 ( tDAR id: 4304) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8H1305W

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections

Temporal Coverage

Calendar Date: -12000 to 1900

Spatial Coverage

min long: -114.416; min lat: 38.709 ; max long: -114.103; max lat: 39.114 ;

Individual & Institutional Roles

Contributor(s): Marcia Donaldson; Suzanne K Fish; Richard E. Hughes; Thomas M. Origer; Murray A. Tamers; Jennifer A. Waters


General Note: GRBA 1992A

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