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Low-Intensity Investigations at Three Small Sites Along Lake Xaltocan in the Northern Basin of Mexico

  • Christopher T. Morehart (a1) and Destiny L. Crider (a2)

Abstract

This report describes recent low-intensity archaeological investigations conducted at three small sites in the northern Basin of Mexico. The sites are represented by surface artifact scatters and are located on the former shoreline of the now-drained Lake Xaltocan, originally one of the principal lakes in this region. Fieldwork included mapping surface concentrations and site dimensions, conducting test excavations, and recovering surface collections. The analysis of surface artifacts focused on determining site function and chronology. Based on fieldwork and analysis, we propose that Michpilco likely was a habitation site with a substantial occupation during the Classic period. The smaller Non-Grid 5 site was occupied during the Epiclassic period, and site Non-Grid 6 was occupied during the Late Postclassic to colonial periods. These sites reflect occupations in a lacustrine landscape throughout different periods. They also exemplify the rapid disappearance and threat of destruction that looting, infrastructural development, and agriculture pose to archaeological sites in the region.

Resumen

Este reporte describe las investigaciones de baja intensidad que se han llevado a cabo para caracterizar a tres sitios pequeños en el norte de la Cuenca de México, representados por una dispersión superficial de artefactos. Cada sitio se ubica en las orillas antiguas del Lago de Xaltocan, uno de los principales de la Cuenca. El trabajo de campo se restringió al mapeo de las concentraciones en superficie, excavaciones de sondeos y recolecciones de los artefactos en superficie. El análisis de los artefactos se enfocó en determinar la función y la cronología de los sitios. Esta investigación nos permite localizar temporalmente cada sitio, así como interpretar su función. Michpilco representa a un sitio con una ocupación sustancial durante el periodo clásico. El sitio No-Cuadrícula 5 consiste en una ocupación del periodo epiclásico. El sitio No-Cuadrícula 6 representa a una aldea lacustre ocupada durante los periodos posclásico tardío y colonial. Estos tres sitios demuestran la ocupación de un paisaje lacustre durante períodos diferentes. Los sitios pequeños como estos están desapareciendo rápidamente debido a los saqueos, el desarrollo de infraestructura y la agricultura.

Copyright

Corresponding author

1 (christopher.morehart@asu.edu) (corresponding author)

References

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Low-Intensity Investigations at Three Small Sites Along Lake Xaltocan in the Northern Basin of Mexico

  • Christopher T. Morehart (a1) and Destiny L. Crider (a2)

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