Archeological Survey and Test Excavations in the Burnsville Reservoir, Braxton County, West Virginia


The report was prepared by the senior author from notes and photographs of local collections made by Dewey Berry during his survey and limited test excavations in 1971 and a manuscript submitted to the Archeology Section by Emil Liddell (Fairmont State College) who served as field supervisor in 1973. The 1971 investigations were conducted entirely with State funds, while the 1973 project was accomplished with State funds and a contract (Number CX-4000-3-0031) with the National Park Service, Northeast Region.

The project will be located on the Little Kanawha River, just upstream from the town of Burnsville, in Braxton County, West Virginia. The Little Kanawha River is one of the larger tributaries to the Ohio River in the State. Very little work had been done in this area of the State, and our knowledge of the cultures found there was limited. A total of 43 sites (historic and prehistoric) were located in or near the proposed Burnsville Reservoir during a survey conducted in June and July of 1971 by the Archeology Section. Of these sites, 24 were situated within the area to be inundated, 11 were at the edge of the maximum flood level, and the remainder were outside the immediate project area. The material found on the sites by the survey or reported by local collectors ranged in age from Early Archaic (8000 B.C.) to Late Prehistoric (A.D. 1700) and Historic (Civil War).

Although the 1973 excavations were not as productive as hoped, they have contributed to our knowledge of the area and provided the Archeology Section with a small study collection from the Braxton County area. No further work is deemed necessary in the Burnsville Reservoir, although earth-moving activities (borrow pits, etc.) may necessitate additional work in the future on some of the sites outside the reservoir. The historic Civil War trenches and the presumed site of the Indian village of Bulltown are, hopefully, to be made into a park (both sites are well above the high-water mark).

Cite this Record

Archeological Survey and Test Excavations in the Burnsville Reservoir, Braxton County, West Virginia. Bettye J. Broyles, Emil R. Liddell, Dewey Berry. 1975 ( tDAR id: 447809) ; doi:10.6067/XCV8447809

Spatial Coverage

min long: -80.878; min lat: 38.737 ; max long: -80.436; max lat: 38.912 ;

Record Identifiers

Contract No.(s): CX-4000-3-0031


General Note: The digital materials in this collection were processed by the Veterans Curation Program (VCP), and includes archival photographs, artifact report, artifact catalog, finding aid, original investigation report, oversized material spreadsheet, photographic material spreadsheet, scanned asset key and select artifact photographs. Additional digital materials held by the VCP include additional artifact photographs, collection map, correspondence, data report, document folder listing, excavation record, feature record, field notes, initial data notes, original investigation report annotated, oversized labels, petroglyph record, site summary and site survey record. For additional information on these materials, refer to the finding aid.

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2076_0086_OCR_PDFA.pdf 44.71mb Dec 18, 2018 5:47:19 PM Confidential

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Contact(s): US Army Corps of Engineers Mandatory Center of Expertise for the Curation and Management of Archaeological Collections, St. Louis District