13. Site 42UN1103: A Rockshelter in Dinosaur National Monument,
Liestman, Terri L.
A small rockshelter (42UN1103) in Dinosaur National Monument was recently
excavated by personnel from the Midwest Archeological Center. A dry-laid
sandstone retaining wall partially covered the mouth of the shelter, which
also contained a slab-lined storage cist and a possible unfired
clay-and-wattle storage cist. Material remains found in the shelter
included a diagnostic Fremont knife tip and a cache of corn cobs.
Scattered hearth remains within the shelter imply temporary habitation.
Radiocarbon dates from 42UN1103 indicate a utilization of the shelter
between A.D. 1010 and A.D. 1570. Two log supports in the retaining wall
substantiate the later part of this occupation, providing
dendrochronological dates of A.D. 1568 and A.D. 1585. The presence of dent
corn in associateion with these dates tentatively suggests recent use of
the shelter by a group with a subsistence partially dependent upon corn.
Such data may substantiate the growing body of evidence indicating that the
Uintah Basin was occupied either by the Fremont or by a group having
"Fremont-like" characteristics, but at a much later date than is typically
reported. In conjunction with evidence from other recently excavated sites
in the area, it is clear that a reconsideration of the so-called "Fremont
demise" is underway.
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