Shields Pueblo Database Home The Shields Pueblo Database
North Indicator True north (14 degree declination), USGS Quadrangle map: Arriola, 7.5 minute series, 1965 (photoinspected 1971)
Grid Grid is aligned to true north
Mapping Techniques Mapping at Shields Pueblo was conducted with a Topcon GTS-303 total station surveying instrument and data collector. However, the setting in of Datums 1 and 2 were accomplished with a Lietz one-minute transit, as this initial work required an instrument with a compass in order to establish a baseline oriented to true north. The primary datum (Datum 1) was set in the tallest portion of the Architectural Block 100 rubble mound. The coordinates of this datum were set at 500N 500E (meters); these numbers were large enough to ensure that the grid for this site could be extended and used for mapping and excavations at all sites within the entire 52-acres without necessitating the use of negative coordinates on any site. The elevation of Datum 1 was set at 100 meters, to avoid any possibility of necessitating the use of negative elevations throughout the site. Datum 2 was set in east of Architectural Block 500 at 490.856N 702.563E and an elevation of 92.119 meters. Datum 3 was set in north of Architectural Block 100 at 552.098N 504.567E and an elevation of 97.634 meters. Datum 4 was set in west of Architectural Block 700 at 516.452N 294.270E and an elevation of 96.218 meters. The rebar mapping datums were the only items left at the site when fieldwork was completed.
Clearing of Vegetation Grasses and other small plants were removed in excavated areas. Shrubs were trimmed during placement and removal of the equipment trailer, and during construction of the culvert south of Architectural Block 600 and north of County Road P.5. No trees were removed or damaged during Crow Canyon's research at the site.
Reclamation Excavation units were backfilled according to permit stipulations and Crow Canyon Archaeological Center policy. Landscaping fabric was used in the bottom of excavation units to protect surfaces and to mark the extent of Crow Canyon's excavations. The pits and structures were then filled with layers of dirt and rocks as nearly as possible to the original contours of modern ground surface. All Crow Canyon equipment and debris, except for rebar mapping datums, were removed from the site when fieldwork ended in November 2000.
Surface Indications Intact masonry rooms were indicated by rubble mounds or rock concentrations only in Architectural Block 100. Throughout Shields Pueblo, kivas were indicated by shallow depressions, some by the absence of rubble, and for some kivas there were no surface indications. Middens were indicated by relatively greater artifact density on modern ground surface, but had been dispersed by plowing activities.
Modern Ground Surface Collections Artifacts on the modern ground surface were collected from a 3-m diameter "dog leash" in the center of each 20-x-20-m grid on the site. Artifacts on the modern ground surface were collected from each excavation unit.
Treatment of Disturbed Areas When Crow Canyon's field work began at Shields Pueblo, multiple disturbed areas were visible. Pothunting activities were evident in most architectural blocks, particularly those located near County Road P.5 including Architectural Blocks 500, 600, and 800.
Areas Disturbed by Crow Canyon Crow Canyon staff and participants were involved in archaeological excavations at Shields Pueblo for four years, from 1997 to 2000. Crow Canyon's trailer was located in Architectural Block 100 and the portable toilets were located southeast of Architectural Block 600 near County Road P.5. A culvert was installed southeast of Architectural Block 600 and north of County Road P.5 in 1997 and gravel was laid down just north of the culvert for a parking area. Vegetation was cleared from areas to be excavated (including sagebrush, rabbitbrush, and grasses). Additionally, screening stations were cleared of vegetation and plastic was laid below the screens to catch screened dirt which was subsequently used for backfilling. Rocks removed during excavation were stacked next to the excavation units and were put back into the units during backfilling. Moreover, four rebar datums with caps were set in concrete throughout the site. All excavation units were backfilled by the end of the 2000 field season and disturbed areas were reseeded with native grasses. Crow Canyon's facilities, equipment, and debris were removed from the site at the end of the 2000 field season with the exception of the rebar datums.
Areas and Percent Damaged by Vandals Beginning in the 1950s and continuing into the late 1990s, mechanical equipment was used for agricultural production at Shields Pueblo, thus the site was heavily disturbed from plowing activities. Although plowing ceased on the Colorado Mountain College property in the 1970s, the Wilson property was continually plowed until the late 1990s. Mechanical disturbance removed the surface signatures of all but three surface rooms from the site (Structures 102, 103, and 104), obscured pitstructure depressions, and scattered midden deposits. However, cultural deposits are intact below the plow zone (up to 30 cm below the modern ground surface). Additionally, Shields Pueblo was the location of Colorado Mountain College's field schools during the summers of 1974, 1975, 1976, and 1977. Several areas of the site were excavated during the field schools, particulary structures located in Architectural Blocks 100, 200, 400, and 600. Shields Pueblo was the location of undocumented digging, particularly in the 1960s, until the purchase of the southern portion of the site in 1974 by Colroado Mountain College. Locals referred to the site as "Indian Burial Ground" as numeous burials were excavated from the site in addition to pottery vessels and other artifacts such as copper bells (see article by Alden C. Hayes, "A Copper Bell from Southwestern Colorado" published in Plateau 35(2):53-56). Numerous whole vessels recovered from Shields Pueblo in the 1960s are in the "Chappel Collection" and curated by the Anasazi Heritage Center in Dolores, Colorado.
Artifacts Not Collected All artifacts caught by 1/4-inch-mesh screen (or 1/8-inch-mesh screen for hearth fills) were collected. Architectural rocks such as building blocks, ventilator cover slabs, hatchway covers, and so forth were not collected. In-situ deflector slabs were documented as features and left in place.
Types of Surfaces Recognized Prepared (constructed) floors; ephemeral use surfaces within structures; outdoor (extramural) use surfaces. All features (except wall features) were inferred to have been associated with a surface of some type; thus, a surface was designated for each feature, regardless of whether a surface was visible.
How Artifact-Surface Associations Were Defined Artifacts were inferred to be associated with a surface if they contacted the surface or rested on an object that contacted the surface. Artifacts were inferred to be possibly associated with a surface if they were within 5 cm of the surface (if an artifact was within 5 cm of a surface, the elevation of the artifact relative to the surface was recorded).
Tree-Ring Sampling All burned and unburned wood specimens that appeared to contain 40 or more rings were collected as tree-ring samples. These samples were collected and securely wrapped in cotton string as promptly as possible after exposure to prevent damage to the sample. Tree-ring samples were point-located (i.e., the locations were documented both horizontally and vertically).
Archaeomagnetic Sampling Not applicable
Archaeobotanical (Flotation) Sampling Flotation samples were routinely collected from contexts containing burned organic material. These contexts included ashy midden deposits, hearth and firepit fills, ash deposits on kiva floors, and any vegetal material in roof-fall strata. Standard samples were 1 liter, but smaller samples were collected where a smaller cultural deposit was encountered. Modern plant and animal disturbances were avoided when sampling. Individual samples, such as visible charred maize cobs or kernels, were recovered during excavating or screening, and sent in as a vegetal sample.
Pollen Sampling Pollen samples were collected from contexts thought most likely to yield information about structure use. Thus, samples were collected from sealed contexts on floors (i.e., beneath rocks that were resting on a surface) and from sealed mortar contexts in Structure 1412 (shrine located above Structure 1402, masonry kiva). Control samples were collected from roof-fall and wall-fall debris.
Other Sampling Ash and burned desposits (i.e., ash from hearths and firepits) were collected for microbotanical and macrobontanical analyses.

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