ARCHAEOLOGY OF THE
THE FIRST FISHING COMMUNITY AT
WANCHESE, ROANOKE ISLAND
David Sutton phelps
with appendices by
R. Dale McCall, Kenneth C. Hartsell, Paul R.
Jeannette Runquist and Camm C. Swift
ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH REPORT NO. 6
Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Economics
East Carolina University
Greenville, North Carolina
AN AMERICA'S FOUR HUNDRETH
TABLE OF CONTENTS
|List of Figures (below)||v|
|List of Tables (below)||v|
|The Tillett Site||9|
A. Osteological Analysis of the Tillett Site Burials
(R. Dale McCall)
|Appendix B. Historic Artifacts (Kenneth C. Hartsell)||97|
C. Ethnobotanical Analysis of Samples from the
Tillett Site (Paul R. Green)
D. Non-Fish Faunal Remains from the Tillett
Site (Jeannette Runquist)
E. Analysis of Fish Bones from the Wanchese
Site, 31DR35 (Camm Swift)
iii - iv
List of Figures
|Frontispiece. Section of an 1861 U. S. Coast Survey map. (above)||ii|
|Figure 1. Archaeological sites in the Roanoke Island vicinity.||2|
|Figure 2. Aerial views of Wanchese Harbor and the Tillett site.||5|
|Figure 3. Topography and excavation at the Tillett site.||10|
|Figure 4. Views of the site area.||14|
|Figure 5. Profiles at south end of the Tillett site.||17|
|Figure 6. Water level and stratigraphy in square -56R2.||19|
|Figure 7. Intrusions and stratigraphy in square 20R21.||20|
|Figure 8. Feature 6 and Pit 1, square -48.||26|
|Figure 9. Features 8 and 9.||27|
|Figure 10. Features and Burials in -42 trench.||31|
|Figure 11. Burial pit outlines and Burial 2.||33|
|Figure 12. Burials 1, 3 and 4.||34|
|Figure 13. Mount Pleasant, Mockley and Hanover ceramics.||43|
|Figure 14. Colington ceramic types.||45|
|Figure 15. Ceramic rim and lip forms.||46|
|Figure 16. Colington plain rim sherds.||48|
|Figure 17. Ceramic serration in control squares.||50|
|Figure 18. Roanoke projectile points, preforms, drill, and bifacial tools.||54|
|Figure 19. Cobble hammerstone and sandstone abraders.||55|
|Figure 20. Shell and bone artifacts and ceramic smoking pipes.||58|
|Figure A1. Various postcranial pathologies from Burials 1-4.||70|
|Figure A2. Frontal and lateral views of crania from Burials 2 and 3.||71|
A3. Superior aspect of mandibles of Burials 2 and 4, and
calculus on teeth of Burial 4.
|Figure A4. Dental pathology and lesions on the Burial 3 cranium.||73|
|Figure B1. Artifacts from the Historic component.||99|
List of Tables
|Table 1. Cultural Sequence for the North Carolina Coast.||7|
|Table 2. Modern Plant Community at the Tillett Site.||11|
|Table 3. Ceramic Distribution in Features.||29|
|Table 4. Ceramic Types in the Fill of Burial Pits.||37|
|Table 5. Types of Lithic Raw Material.||57|
|Table 6. Comparative Specimen Density in the Mount Pleasant Phase.||64|
|Table 7. Comparative Specimen Density in the Colington Phase.||64|
|Table Al. Burial 1 Skeletal Remains.||78|
|Table A2. Cranial Metric Variation in Burials 2 and 3.||81|
|Table A3. Non-metric Cranial Variation in Burials 2 and 3.||83|
|Table A4. Burial 2 Postcranial Skeletal Remains.||84|
|Table A5. Burial 2 Dental Pathology.||88|
|Table A6. Burial 3 Postcranial Skeletal Remains.||89|
|Table A7. Burial 3 Dental Pathology.||91|
|Table A8. Burial 4 Skeletal Remains||93|
A9. Frequency of Distributions of Standardized Deviates
of Two Amerindian Crania.
A10. Cranial Measurements of Some Eastern Amerindian
A11. Cranial Indices of Some Eastern Ameritidian
|Table Cl. Ethnobotanical Samples from the Tillett Site.||104|
|Table C2. Components of Samples from 31DR35, by Weight in Grams.||105|
C3. Components of Samples from 31DR35, by Percentage
|Table C4. Potential Plant Foods.||107|
|Table D1. Species Identified at the Tillett Site.||111|
|Table D2. Faunal Remains from the Colington Component.||112|
D3. Useable Meat Weight and Caloric Yield from the
|Table D4. Faunal Remains from the Mount Pleasant Component.||114|
D5. Useable Meat Weight and Caloris Yield from the
Mount Pleasant Component.
|Table E1. Distribution of Fish in the Excavated Units.||118|
v - vi
The Tillett site is named for its owner, Mr. Gilbert R. ("Moon") Tillett of Wanchese, North Carolina, who graciously granted us permission to do test excavations in 1972 and the major work in 1979 and provided what information he could concerning the property. We are thankful for his willing aid and cooperation, without which the site could not have been studied.
Mr. Edward Green, Jr. of Wanchese was most helpful in providing information about the site and his family, who owned the site prior to selling the property to Mr. Tillett.
Laboratory and storage space during the field portion of the project was made available for us at the North Carolina Marine Resources Center, Roanoke Island, by Mr. Les Picker, Director of the Center in 1979. It should be noted that the Center and its personnel have been most helpful and accommodating over a number of years of coastal research in and around Roanoke Island, and continue to render these services under the current Director, Mr. Rhett White. Given the prevailing limitations of Roanoke Island, the Center and its personnel are indispensable resources.
David Stick loaned us copies of some older coastal maps of Roanoke Island that he had obtained in initiating a study of island erosion, and which have proved useful for this project as well as others.
Thanks are offered to those residents of Wanchese who gave us information about the Tillett site, donated or showed us their artifact collections from this and other sites, and rendered other services that made our stay there more pleasant.
Mr. Robert Hyatt, then General Manager of "The Lost Colony" for the Roanoke Island Historical Association, showed a genuine interest in the project and its results, and was most hospitable in providing tickets to the outdoor drama for the crew members. His son, "Rusty" Hyatt, worked with us as a volunteer during the final weeks of the project, serving well in his first exposure to archaeology.
The 1972 test excavations at the site were supported by the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, East Carolina University, as part of the archaeological field school activities for that summer. The main excavation project in May and June, 1979, was accomplished under a one-year salvage contract with the North Carolina Department of Natural and Economic Resources; the contract was later transferred to the Department of Commerce following an administrative reorganization. Final analysis and publication of the results was made possible under a grant from the American Quadricentennial Corporation with funds from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation because of the significance of the Tillett (Page vii.) site in understanding the archaeology of Roanoke Island during America's Four Hundredth Anniversary.
The field crew for the 1979 project included: John B. Green, III and Susan Whalen, crew chiefs; William T. Bradley, Kenneth C. Hartsell and Linda D. Howell, crew members; Mary H. Barnes and Michael Whetzel, students; and "Rusty" Hyatt, volunteer. Vivian E. Thomas served as part-time project secretary, and aid in final analysis and reporting of results was provided by Paul R. Green, Kenneth C. Hartsell and the laboratory staff under a current grant from the American Quadricentennial Corporation.
Identification of the modern botanical community on the Tillett site was done by Dr. Vincent Bellis, Department of Biology, East Carolina University, and studies of the faunal and fish specimens by Dr. Jeannette Runquist, Department of Biology, Birmingham Southern College, and Dr. Camm C. Swift, Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History. I also appreciate the aid of Dr. Stanley Riggs, Department of Geology, East Carolina University, in locating lithic resource areas, and of Dr. Richard Yarnell, Department of Anthropology, University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, who identified some modern persimmon seeds from the site.
Peggy S. phelps, my wife, typed this final manuscript as she has done so many others over the years. Not only is her typing excellent, but her gentle prodding, suggestions, sharing and love have sustained me.
Carolina Algonkian Project, All Rights Reserved