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The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. XII, No. 4, 1959
THE JOHNSON LAKE SITE, MARION COUNTY, FLORIDA
Ripley P. Bullen and Edward M. Dolan
Excavation by Dolan of the Johnson Lake Site in central Florida provided a
series of materials from a work shop site. Sherds of St. Johns lain and Deptfor
Check Stamped were found in very minor amounts in scattered locations. Heavy
stemmed points, triangular knives, and various scrapers totaled 132 artifacts,
while worked or utilized flakes totaled 379 pieces. Type names are proposed for
Johnson, Alachua, Marion, Levy, and Putnam points. The Putnam points may overlap
with the Gary Point of Texas. The types are dated as being first made in the
Late Preoeramic period, 5,000-2,000 B. C. with some late varieties continuing to
be made in the Orange (fiber-tempered pottery) period. They probably cease by
Transitional times, about 900 B. C. Johnson Lake is similar to the Bolen Site in
central Florida. Abstract by C. H. F.
In December, 1958, Mr. C. E. Burkhardt of High SpringsFlo-
rida, brought to the attention of the Florida State Museum the ex-
istence of an aboriginal lithic workshop more extensive than any
heretofore reported in Florida. This workshop area extends about
a mile towards the south and southwest from the southern shore
of Johnson Lake, a small pond located in Section 22, Township
12 South, Range 19 East, in the extreme northwestern part of
Marion County, Florida (Fig. 1).
Here, over a considerable area, chips and cores, sometimes
worked fragments, and occasionally finished specimens, may be
found in road cuts or plowed fields although the concentration is
greater near Johnson Lake than further south. In places farmers
in clearing their fields have left piles of chert nodules. This
material, used by Indians for the manufacture of chipped tools,
probably represents the erosional remains of a limestone forma-
tion possibly that of the Suwannee limestone.
In July, 1959, excavations were conducted near the south
shore of Johnson Lake by the junior author on land owned by the
Ocala Manufacturing, Ice, and Packing Company. The president of
this company, Mr. A. M. Collins, very kindly gave his consent to
the project. The purposes of these excavations were to investi-
gate a. workshop site, secure a sample of its industrial products,
and, if possible, determine sequential developments of lithic
artifacts. Specifically, it was hoped the Johnson Lake specimens
might be compared with those recently excavated by the Museum at
Bolen Bluff (Bullen, 1958a).
Our test was located on a gently sloping "finger" of land a-
bout 150 feet south of the lake shore and some 1000 feet west of
the dirt road which ends at the south side of Johnson Lake. The
test area was believed to be the most likely place to which ab-
original tool makers would have carried chert cores to work them
down to finished shapes. The area is about 16 to 17 feet above
the surface of the lake and ideally suited for camping. Immediate-
ly to both the east and the west, the surface dips downward to a
much lower and, in places, swampy shoreline (Figure 1).
Four pits were dug in arbitrary 6-inch levels. The two last
pits (E and F) were dug in arbitrary 3-inch levels in an attempt
to refine the observations.
The south and east profiles of the main excavation will be
found in Figure 2. Generally speaking, a dark grey or blackish
humus-laden sandy soil lay conformably upon lighter-colored sand
which, with depth, became still lighter in color and coarser in
texture. Finally, below this coarse, whitish sand at a depth of
approximately 20 inches were found cobblestone-like lumps of
brown ferrous-laden materials which were taken to represent the
eroded top of the Miocene Hawthorne formation. While chips were
found in white sand between the highest lumps of eroded Hawthorne
material, the lumpy deposit was archaeologically sterile.
As will be noticed on the profiles, surfaces of these various
deposits slope downward towards the lake at, apparently, a greater
rate than does the present surface of the ground. It is believed
the light-grey sand, shown on the top of Square F in the east pro-
file (Fig. 2) arrived in place fairly recently as the result of
erosion and surface creep. It was archaeologically sterile.
Water seepage became a great problem during excavation be-
cause of severe rainstorms which increased the flow of seepage,
flooding the bottoms of our tests. Consequently a narrow drainage
ditch was dug leading to the northwest from the northwest corner
of Square C. Specimens from this ditch were saved and some will
be referred to later although they were not removed by levels.
Stone specimens were found from the top of the sand down to
the top of the underlying Hawthorne formation. The vertical dis-
tribution of specimens from the main excavation is given in Figure
3. As shown there, the maximum concentration occurred between
depths of 12 and 18 inches, but it varied from square to square.
Correlating such data with the location of the squares indicates
that the zone of concentration slopes downward at a rate greater
than that of the present surface suggesting the ground surface,
may have been steeper in Indian times than now.
Chips and artifacts from the lowest levels had sand cemented
to their upper surfaces by phosphatic clay and iron salts (Fig. 6,
b). This phenomenon results from deposition of cementing agen-
cies by percolating ground water.
The geologic situation culture bearing sands resting di-
rectly on an eroded surface of the Hawthorne formation as well as
the cementing of sand to the upper side of chips found relatively
deep in those sands is exactly the same as that found at the
northeast. As will be shown later, there are also similarities
in the cultural content of these sands.
Most of the stone material artifacts, flakes, cores, and
both thin, light pieces and heavy, rounded pieces occurred in
the ground in small, compact zones or lenses, 3 to 5 feet in dia-
meter and, at most, a foot in thickness, mixed, of course, with
sand. It seems obvious these represent locations where a workman
sat and fashioned his tools.
Two large trianguloid knives are illustrated which were
found in two pieces. Both were made of the same material. The
base of one (Fig. 5, m) was found between depths of 18 and 24
inches in Square C while that of the other was between depths of
15 and 18 inches in Square D. The mid portion of the first and
the tip of the second were found in the drainage ditch some 15
feet distant. Quite obviously the workman, nearly finished with
a fine artifact, had struck a final chip and, because of a flaw
in the chert, broken the blade. The nicely finished base dropped
among the growing pile of debris beside him while the other part,
probably with a few choice words, was thrown some distance away.
This must have occurred at least twice. The flaws which caused
the breaks are clearly evident, the two similar bases lay near
each other, and 15 feet away the other two parts thrown in the
same direction and with the same force lay side by side.
Two pits were noted, both about 18 inches in diameter. One
was located along the line dividing Square B from Square I) while
the other was in the southeastern corner of Square F. The first
was filled with black, sandy dirt and lead downward from a depth
of 5 inches to a depth of 18 inches. The other consisted of a
charcoal-impregnated deposit noted as extending from 9 to 12
inches below the surface. Apparently, Indians used the area for
camping as well as for the manufacture of tools.
A total of forty-four sherds were found. One St. Johns
Plain and three Deptford Check Stamped sherds occurred in the
first and one sand-tempered plain sherd in the second level of
Square A. In the main excavation, thirteen St. Johns Plain
sherds were found in the second level and twenty more in the
third level of Square C. In Square F, one sand-tempered and five
St. Johns Plain sherds were uncovered in the third level, three
between depth of 12 and 15 inches and the other three between
depths of 15 and 18 inches. All of these St. Johns sherds could
have come from one vessel. Relatively thick, they were made of a
soft paste and exhibit eroded edges. No pottery was found in
Squares B, D, or E.
It is believed this pottery is evidence of the temporary use
of the Johnson Lake site for camping purposes during early post-
Orange (fiber-tempered pottery) times and that this pottery is
not associated with the main use of the site. This does not mean
that the makers of the pottery did not also make chipped tools
from chert available near Johnson Lake but that the vast majority
of the chipped artifacts found there were manufactured a long
time before this pottery was made.
In support of this contention, we would point out that these
sherds are definitely limited in distribution both horizontally
and vertically. The two squares where pottery was found in the
main excavation, Squares C and F, are the two lowest and are
situated where erosion and downhill surface creep would be ex-
pected to have a maximum effect. The top 6 inches of these
squares were nearly sterile and partly covered with a recent de-
posit of light grey sand so that the depth of these sherds is
greater than would otherwise be the case.
In Square F, where we have 3-inch levels, pottery was concen-
trated just above and just below a depth of 15 inches. Fifteen
stone specimens were above and 46 were below a depth of 15 inches
in this square. If this consideration were limited to stone tools
(omitting worked fragments and utilized flakes), the ratio would
be two above and seventeen below a depth of 15 inches. It seems
evident these sherds are not to be correlated with the main use
of the site which probably occurred a thousand years or more be-
fore this pottery was made.
Over 500 stone specimens were found including 67 classifiable
projectile points and knives, two drills,22 side and end scrapers
34 crude scrapers, 7 hammerstones, 157 worked fragments, several
cores, and 222 utilized flakes. Examples are illustrated in
Figures 4 to 6 and the vertical distribution of projectile points
and knives from the main excavation presented in Figure 3.
Examination of Figure 3 indicates that the maximum concentra-
tion of artifacts in the main excavation occurred between depths
of 12 and 18 inches. Artifacts concentrated a.t lesser or greater
depths may be presumed to be relatively younger or older than the
average age for this part of the side.
Projectile points with straight (parallel-sided) stems (Fig.
4, a-c), with contracting stems (Fig. 4, d-f), and with incurvate
stems (Fig. 4, j-h) have the same vertical distribution as that
given for all tools. It would appear that these three "types"
are but minor variations of the same theme anti that they were
madre throughout the continuum represented at the main excavation.
Points with rounded stems (Fig. 4, i-k) and those with re-
curvate blades (Fig. 4, 1) present a little different vertical
distribution. The data suggest that the former may have been re-
latively early and the later relatively late during the period
represented by this part of the site. Suggestions that such re-
lationships might be correct may be implied by data from the
Bolen Bluff and Suwannee sites. At Bolen Bluff a point with a
rounded stem was the lowest stemmed point (Bullen, 1958, PI.IV ,
T). At the Suwannee site, Goggin found a point with a recurvate
blade between depths of 8 and 12 inches while in the next 5-foot
square a point with a. rounded stem was found between depths of 16
and 20 inches (Goggin, 1950, p. 48, Fig. 1, T and U). There were
no other points in these two squares.
Only one projectile point exhibited well developed barbs
(Fig. 4, m). It was found in Square C between depths of 12 and
18 inches. Both the base of the stem and the point of the tip
are missing. Barbed points, similar to this one, are not common
Some points have slightly concave bases, chiefly the result
of the removal of thinning chips (Fig. 4, b, e-h, n-p). An analy-
sis of the vertical distribution of this feature did not indicate
any change in its frequency with depth.
Knives seem to show more definite suggestions of changes in
shapes with time than do projectile points. Large, hafted knives
(Fig. 4, n-p), like projectile points with straight or contract-
ing stems which they so closely resemble, and large, trianguloid
knives (Fig. 5, k-n) have a vertical distribution which agrees
with that for all stone tools. On the other hand, small triangu-
loid knives (Fig. 5, g-i) apparently are relatively late and
ovate knives (Fig. 5, c, j, and 6, g) relatively early (Fig. 3).
Both large and small trianguloid knives are nicely made but ovate
knives from Johnson Lake except one (Fig. 5, j) arpear crude.
One asymmetric hafted knife remains to be mentioned. The ar-
rangpment for hafting has produced a corner-notched effect (Fig.
5, d). It was found in Square E between depths of 9 and 12 inches.
Of two fragments of drills, one (Fig. 5, a) is merely a tip .
It came from between depths of 15 and 18 inches in Square F. The
other, made on a flake but minus its tip (Fig. 5, b), occurred be-
tween depths of 6 and 12 inches in Square B.
Among scrapers two are noteworthy. Both are small, neatly
made, and might be classified as hafted thumbnail scrapers. One
(Fig. 5, e) came from a depth of 15 to 18 inches in Square E
while the other (Fig. 5, f) was in Square C between depths of 6
and 12 inches.
Various side and end scrapers (Fig. 6, a-e), usually crudely
made, were fairly common at the site. Their vertical distribution
agreed with that of all stone tools aq given in Figure 6. The two
"best" are those shown in the middle row of Figure 6. For compara-
tive purposes it should be mentioned that these scrapers are simi-
lar to those from the Late Preceramic zones at Bolen Bluff and are
not as well made as those from the Early Preceramic zones of that
One large, adve-like tool (Fig. 6, f) was uncovered at a depth
of 6 inches in Square D. A relatively late position of this tool,
suggested by this shallow depth, agrees with the reasonably late
provenience indicated at other sites (Bullen and Bullen, 1954; Bul-
len, 1958a, and b; Coates, 1955).
Worked fragments include pieces of chert which exhibit at
least a trace of a bifacial edge or are pieces of broken tools.
As would be expected at a workshop, many such fragments were found.
Undoubtedly, the greatest majority represent tools broken during
manufacture. Frequently, flaws were evident which caused the
The quantity of utilized flakes found at Johnson Lake was
very great. Some show intentional scraper-like retouching but
many merely exhibit evidence of use along one or more edges. With
so many "good" flakes available they were, apparently, picked up,
used for various purposes, and immediately discarded. The nearby
Bolen Bluff site is also noted for the vast number of utilized
flakes found there.
Worked fragments and utilized flakes, due to the large quanti-
ties involved, are chiefly responsible for the vertical distribu-
tion of "all tools" shown in Figure 3. It may be of interest to
note that the average depth of worked fragments was greater than
that of utilized flakes.
DISCUSSION AND CONCLUSIONS
Excavations at Johnson Lake give us our first sizable test in
a fairly deep site used predominantly as a workshop. Obviously
our tests, although covering an area of 600 square feet, produced
only a small sample of the site as a whole. Nevertheless, they
form a convenient unit for comparison with other sites.
At Johnson Lake as at Bolen Bluff about ten miles to the
northeast, we have culture bearing sands resting on an eroded top
of the Hawthorne formation. At Bolen Bluff pottery was limited
to the highest 18 inches while deeper ones produced many stone
tools pertaining to the Florida Archaic period. Those between
depths of 18 and 24 inches were considered representative of a
Late Preceramic while those from greater depths were considered
as belonging to an Early Preceramic period.
At Johnson Lake the eroded top of the Hawthorne was nearer
the surface. As at Bolen Bluff, pottery was not found below a
depth of 18 inches. However, due to its limited horizontal dis-
tribution and the presence of slope wash (not a factor at Bolen
Bluff) and some pits, it is believed pottery intruded deeper than
might otherwise be the case.
The major part of the deposits in the Johnson Lake test is
in relatively the same geological situation as the Late Preceramic
zone at Bolen Bluff and contained the same types of artifacts.At
both sites, this zone produced a great many stemmed points of
various subtypes to the exclusion of other forms of projectile
points. The only exception is the base of a Suwannee point at
Bolen Bluff. (The notched knife (Fig. 5, d) at Johnson Lake came
from a fairly shallow depth.) These same zones produced a fair
quantity of trianguloid knives (compare Fig. 5, k-n, with Bullen,
1958, PI. V, L-N), a great quantity of crude scrapers, and a vast
number of utilized flakes.
The inventory at Johnson Lake, due presumably to the greater
richness of the deposits, is a little broader than that from
Bolen Bluff but there can be little doubt about the cultural iden-
tity. Both present examples of tools made by the inhabitants of
Florida during the Late Preceramic period which probably occurred
between 2000 and 5000 B. C.
In connection with the comparisons between these two sites,
it may be of interest to note that the 600 square feet excavated
at Johnson Lake produced 519 stone specimens while the excavations
at Bolen Bluff, which covered an area of over 1500 square feet
and had a greater depth of culture bearing deposit, produced vir-
tually the same number (523) of stone specimens. It seems proper
to consider Johnson Lake a workshop-quarry site and Bolen Bluff a.
Whether or not points with recurvate blades (Fig. 4, 1)
prove to be relatively late in the preceramic Archaic of Florida
they form a. good, distinctive "type." The sigmoidal shape of the
edges of the blades is a definite characteristic which makes them
noticeable in any collection. They are further characterized by
finely chipped, serrated edges and thick, blunted tip of the
blade. Stems are slightly contracting and relatively thick so
that scars from the removal of thinning chips are common at the
bottom of the stem. In spite of their thickness these points are
very well made and finished with fine pressure flaking. For fur-
ther reference it would seem proper to refer to them as "Johnson"
This seems an appropriate time to propose names for the
other Archaic stemmed points illustrated in Figure 4 and found so
commonly over much of Florida. We suggest that such points with
straight (parallel-sided) stems (Fig. 4, a-c) be known as "Ala-
chua" points, the similar points with contracting stems (Fig. 4,
d-f) be called "Marion" points, and those with incurvate stems
(Fig. 4, g-h) be designated "Levy" points. In Levy points the
concave edges of their stems is formed by one continuously curv-
ing line extending from the basal corner of the blade to the cor-
responding basal corner of the stem. Bottom of the stems of Levy
points are frequently concave.
Archaic points with rounded stems (Fig. 4, i-k) are similar
in shape, si7e, and relative temporal position to some of those
which in Texas have been referred to as Gary points (Suhm and
Krieger, 1954, p. 430, P1. 94). However, the Florida points do
not have the range illustrated by Suhn and Kreiger nor is it evi-
dent that all the variations illustrated by them would belong to
the same time period. Considering these facts as well as the
great distance between here and Texas, it seems best to use a
Florida name. We suggest calling them "Putnam" points.
When the above designations are used, it should be under-
stood that they refer to fairly heavy points which are usually
well made but not usually nicely finished. Most exhibit some de-
gree of patination. They vary from li to 4 inches in lenght but
the great majority of them fall between 2 and 3 inches in this re-
spect. Width of stem is one third to one half that of the base
of the blade. Bottom of stems of Alachua, Marion, and Levy points
may be straight or a little concave, sometimes a little convex.
Those of Putnam points, of course, would be convex. Thickness of
points varies from to I of an inch. Only extremely rarely do
the corners of the blades of these points "droop" to form barbs.
Alachua, Marion, Levy, and Putman points are not usually as
well made as those illustrated in Figure 4 which includes only
the "best" examples from the Johnson Lake site. A good idea of
the range of these Florida Archaic points may be secured by com-
paring them with those from Bolen Bluff (Bullen, 1959a, Pla. IV
and VII) and from a site near Silver Springs (Neill, 1958). In
these cases, all points found were illustrated.
The above four designations will take care of over 90 per-
cent of the projectile points found in the Late Preceramic and
Orange periods of Florida. They are variations of the "standard"
or "common" Florida Archaic point. Collectively they might well
be referred to as "Florida Archaic" points. When a finer distinc-
tion is needed, the terms "Alachua", "Marion," "Levy," and "Put-
nam" would then apply.
Apparently, Alachua, Marion, Levy, and Putnam points were
first made at the beginning of the Late Preceramic period which
we estimate lasted from about 5000 B. C. to about 2000 B. C. Put-
nam points may hnve been the earliest form. The manufacture and
use of these Florida Archaic points did not, however, end with
the close of the Late Preceranic period. They are definitely
part of the Orange (fiber-tempered pottery) Period complex (Fer-
guson, 1951, P1. 4, A, HI-I; Bullen, 1955, Fig. 5; 1958b, Pl. 66).
The manufacture of Putnam points seems to have pretty well ended
by Transitional times, circa 900 B. C., as none were found above
Level 4 at South Indian Fields (Ferguson, 1951, p. 42) nor in the
terminal fiber-tempered pottery zone at Site J-5 (Bullen, 1958b,
Similarly, Neill (1958, Pls. 1 and 2) in a stratified site
near Silver Springs found Alachua, Levy, and Putnam points below
and Marion and Levy (?) but no Putnam points above Orange Incised
pottery. However, Putnam points were found in post-Transitional
deposits at Johns Island (Bullen and Bullen, 1950, Fig. 20, B and
u). Neill's work at Silver Springs may document Marion points to
at least A. D. 500 as a sherd of Dunne Creek Red pottery was in
the top of the zone which produced these points.
Points similar to the stemmed points of the Florida Archaic
are sometimes found in even later complexes especially Safety
Harbor (Griffin and Bullen, 1950, p. 40) and Fort Walton (Bullen,
1949, p. 3; Griffin, 1950, p. 105, Fig. 38, 24-25). However,
they are rare per cubic foot of debris, tend to be leqs "Massive"
and sometimes present minor "differences" which may separate them
from the vast bulk of Florida Archaic points. These late "survi-
vals" may represent antiques collected by aboriginal archaeolo-
gists, the survival of the archaic shape in the form of hafted
knives, or ethnological use of the atlatl.
Bullen, Adelaide K. and Ripley P.
1950. "The Johns Island Site, Hernando County, Florida."
American Antiquity, Vol. 16, No. 1, pp. 23-45.
1954. "Further notes on the Battery Point Site, Bayport,
Hernando County, Florida." The Florida Anthropolo-
gist, Vol. 7, No. 3, pp. 103-8.
Bullen, Ripley P.
1949. "Indian Sites at Florida Caverns State Park." The
Florida Anthropologist, Vol. 2, Nos. 1-2, pp. 1-8.
1955. "Stratigraphic Tests at Bluffton, Volusia County,
Florida." The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. 8, No. 1,
1958a. "The Bolen Bluff Site on Paynes Prairie, Florida."
Contributions of the Florida State Museum, Social
Sciences, No. 4, Gainesville.
1958b. "Six Sites near the Chattahoochee River in the Jim
Woodruff Reservoir Area, Florida." Bureau of Ameri-
can Ethnology, Bulletin 169, pp. 315-57.
Coates, Gordon C.
1955. "RBcent Tests of the Battery Point Site, Bayport, Her-
nando County, Florida." The Florida Anthropologist,
Vol. 8, No. 1, pp. 27-30.
Ferguson, Vera Masius
1951. "Chronology at South Indian Field, Florida." Yale
University Publications in Anthropology, No. 45.
Goggin, John M.
1950. "An Early Lithic Complex from Central Florida."
American Antiquity, Vol. 16, No. 2, pp. 99-112.
Griffin, John W. and Ripley P. Bullen
1950. "The Safety Harbor Site, Pinellas County, Florida."
Florida Anthropological Society Publications, No. 2.
Neill, Wilfred T.
1958. "A Stratified Early Site at Silver Springs, Florida."
The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. 11, No. 3, pp. 33-44.
Suhm, Dee Ann and Alex D. Drieger
1954. "An Introductory Handbook of Texas Archaeology." Bul-
letin of the Texas Archaeological Society, Vol. 25.
Florida State Museum
August 25, 1959
JOHNSON LAKE SITE
Fig. 1. Location map, Jolmson Lake Site
BLACK SANDY SOIL
111 DARK GREY SAND
I LIGHT GREY SAND
Fig. 2. Profiles from main excavation, JohnRon Lake Site.
VERTICAL DISTRIBUTION STONE TOOLS
SPECIMENS PROJECTILE POINTS KNIVES TOTALS
DEPTHS STRA- CON- ROUND- INCUR- INCUR-LARGE, LARGE, SMALL, ALL
IN EIGHT TRACT- ED VATE VATE HAFT- TRIAN- TRIAN- OVATE TOOLS
INCHES STEMS ING STEMS STEMS BLADES ED GULOID GULOID
0-6 I 2 I 36
6-12 4 3 4 2 11/2 2 157
12-18 3 3 2 5 2 6 51/2 5 176
18-24 3 2 2 2 3 65
Fig. 4. Stemmed projectile points and knivep, Johnson Lnke Site.
n-c, straight; d-f, contracting; g-h, incurvnte; i-k, rounded; 1,
recurvate blade; m, barbed; n-p, large hafted knives.
Fig. 5. Miscellaneous chipped tools, Johnson Lake Site.
a-b drilla; c, crude ovate knife; d, hafted knife; e-f,
small scrapers; g-i, small trianguloid knives; j, ovate
knife; k-n, large trianguloid knives.
Fig. 6. Large chipped tools, Johnson Lake Site.
a-e side and end scrapers; f, large adze-like
tool; g, crude scraper or knife.
The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. XII, No. 4, 1959
ADDITIONAL ELLIOT'S POINT COMPLEX SITES
Charles H. Fairbanks
Three additional sites with two types of Poverty Point-like pottery objects
are reported from the south shore of Choctawhatchee Bay, western Florida. Spheri-
cal balls came from the 4-Mile Village Site, a non-ceramic site on a high dune,
and from the Horseshoe Bayou Site, a multiple component locality. Pointed
spheroidal objects were from the Buck Bayou Site, a non-ceramic shell heap. Pos-
sibly associated projectile points at the 4-Mile Village Site were a Midland-like
point, a Dalton point, and stemmed Archaic points. Abstract by author
Clay balls have been reported from two sites in Okaloosa
County, Florida (Ok-10, and Ok-13, Lazarus, 1958). Lazarus gave
the name Elliot's Point complex to the collections of clay balls
and flint chips which he found below ceramic levels at Ok-10.
Since that time he has found additional clay balls at additional
sites in and around Ft. Walton Beach. This paper will describe
three additional sites some twenty miles east of Ft. Walton Beach
in Walton County. In each of the three sites clay balls were
found. In two of the sites herds are lacking or extremely rare.
The range of form for the clay balls is also now known to be
wider than originally described by Lazarus. The presence of clay
balls was called to my attention by Mr. J. N. Coffeen of Four
Mile Village who had collected from the sites.
The Four Mile Village Site, Wl-35, is located on the top of
a sand dune some 70 feet above the beach. During World War II
the Armed Forces constructed a missle-launching ramp up the land-
ward side of the dune. This initiated an erosion cycle on the
dune that blew out some eight feet off from the top of the dune.
The erosion preceded to the point just above a compacted tan sand
stratum which marks the zone of deposition in the dune. At this
level three fire areas were uncovered. Each was a small area of
charcoal about two feet in diameter. Around the fire areaswere
several clay balls of spherical shape along with dozens of frag-
ments of additional balls. Also on the approximate level of the
fire hearths and clay balls were a number of projectile points
and many small flint chips.
These clay balls differ in a number of respects from those
described by Lazarus for the Ft. Walton Beach vicinity. They are
almost completely spherical, instead of the pointed spheroids of
the Elliot's Point Complex. Several whole balls and many frag-
ments seem to have a maximum diameter of about two inches. The
surfaces of the balls are nearly covered with shallow, smoothed,
generally longitudinal grooves. They appear to have been finger
impressions. The balls are made of a very sandy clay containing
considerable amounts of rounded sand grains. Most of the whole
specimens show one or more deep cracks. A few ball fragments
show inclusions of clay pellets. Many of them contain what appear
to be grass impressions on the interior or the exterior surfaces.
Colors range from light tan to light gray, with most of the speci-
mens falling within the grey tones.
Associated projectile points were nine points ranging in
size from 1 3/4" to 2 3/4" in length. One is a pinkish granular
flint, one a tan smooth flint, seven are either patinated to a
creamy white or a whitish-grey granular flint. This flint ap-
pears to have originally been somewhat granular but to have been
sandblasted to produce a more granular appearance. One narrow
triangular point in tan flint with concave base has a moderate
amount of edging grinding for about 1/2" along both basal edges.
Except that the sides taper rather regularly, it might be consid-
ered a Midland Point (Wormington,1957, pp. 262-3, Fig. 68, No. 5).
One point has the general shape of a, rather slender Ieserve (Dal-
ton) point (Ibid, p. 264-5, Fig. 69, No. 2). One is a single
shouldered point reminiscent of a Sandia point of Type 2 (Ibid.,
pp. 262-3, Fig. 68, No. 2). Another point has sloping shoulders.
Only two have truly narrow stems in the Brier Creek tradition.
The whole collection has a look of belonging to the Archaic Tra-
dition except for the possible Midland and Meserve points. The
miscellaneous small chips at the site are sometimes chipped along
the edges as if from use but they do not fall into any recognized
microlithic categories. One may be a small, thick drill point,
although it is badly eroded. They are specifically not the small,
double edged pointscrarers of Jaketown type.
About one mile north of the Four Mile Village Site along the
shore of Horseshoe Bayou another site was found, Wl-36. It was a
shallow shell midden along the edge of the bayou, an arm of Choc-
tawhatchee Bay. Surface and beach collections indicated an occu-
paticn in the Weeden Island II and Ft. Walton Periods. One clay
ball of the spherical type was picked up on the beach.
About one and a half miles northeast of Wl-36 along a slough
tributary to Mack Bavou and Choctawhatchee Bay is a rather exten-
sive shell midden, Wl-34. It has been named the Buck Bayou Mid-
den from another nearby arm of Chootawhatchee Bay. The oyster
shell at times reach a height of about four feet. Sherds are ex-
tremely scarce in the shell, although Weeden Island types were
sparingly found on the surface. Mr. J. N. Coffeen reports find-
ing a number of clay balls in the shell removed from this midden
for roads at Four Mile Village. He feels sure that the balls
came from the lower levels of the midden.
Buck Bayou balls are larger than those from Four Mile Vill-
age and Horseshoe Bayou. In addition they are the oblate spheroi-
dal form found at Ft. Walton Beach sites described by Lazarus.
The clay is much less sandy than in the spherical forms. The sur-
faces are impressed with the same longitudinal grooves in both
At Horseshoe Bayou and Buck Bayou sites sherds of relative
late periods, Weeden Island II and Ft. Walton, were found on the
same sites. It seems likely, however, that the sites are multi-
ple occupation sites. At Four Mile Village only one sherd was
found at the base of the dune blowout. This is a very sandy,thin,
brown, soft sherd with a row of small tubular punctations just un-
der the lip. In all, there is a strong suggestion that the clay
balls are from non-ceramic occupations. Whether or not these are
also preceramic occupations will require additional work.
We immediately think of comparing these clay balls with those
found by Smith near Tallahassee and with the Poverty Point pott-
ery objects,from the lower Misiqssippi Valley. The clay balls
found by Smith; together with highly similar ones from the vicini-
ty of Albany, Georgia; are larger and facetted by means of carved
curvilinear complicated stamps. They are clearly in a late Ft.
Walton or early Leon-Jefferson Period context. Their function
seems to have been to line barbecue pits in areas which were re-
latively free of suitable stones.
The well known Poverty Point pottery objects have been dis-
cussed recently in considerable detail by James A. Ford in two
publications. These pottery objects seem rather clearly to have
been made and used to line fire pits, presumably barbeque sites
There can be little doubt that the Elliot's Point objects served
a very similar purpose. Just why the Indians should have select-
ed a high dune on an open beach (Four Mile Village Site) for a
barbeque is rather baffling. Nesting sea turtles would seem to
offer the only real attraction of that coast to aboriginal groups.
Clay balls have been reported from the Georgia coast as well by
Waring (Ford, Phillips, & Haag, 1955, p. 53-63). They have also
been reported from the Ohio Vnllev in Indiana and West Virginia
ibidd., pp.57-53). It is obvious that the clay balls were used by
Indians in areas where rock lining for cooking pits was scarce or
absent. The same would probably apply to the much later clay
balls found by Smith.
Ford discussed the dating of clay balls from the Jaketown
and Poverty Point sites (Ford & Webb, 1956, pp. 116-125). He
found a range of 1200 B. C. to 200 B. C. based on radiocarbon date.
To this should be added the date 1948 B.C. for the Sapelo shell
circle excavated by Waring and Larson (Griffin, 1952, p. 366) .
The only evidence from the northwest Florida. Gulf Coast is that
observed by Lazarus that the clay balls came from below Deptford
levels. For our area there ic certainly nothing that would con-
tradict the range of 1948-200 B. C. The types of projectile points
in apparent association could well aeree with this date. Ford has
called attention to the fact thnt the use of clay balls continued
sporadically into later times (Ford, Phillips, & Haag, 1955,p.56).
He has concluded that the major use was probably between 800 and
600 B. C. Probably clay balls cannot be used as a definite horizon
marker in the southeast due to their demonstrated range in form
and time. The longitudinally grooved varieties, however, do seem
to have an early date in the area.
Ford, James A., Philip Phillips, & William G. Haag
1955 The Jaketown site in west-central Yississippi. Anthrop.
Papers, Amer. Museum of Natural History, New York, Vol.
45, Part 1.
Ford, James A., & Clarence H. Webb
Poverty Point, A Late Archaic site in Louisiana. Anthrop.
Papers, Amer. Museum of Natural Iistory, New York, vol. 46,
Griffin, James B., ed.
1952 Archaeology of Eastern United States. Chicago
Lazarus, William C.
1958 A Poverty Point Complex in Florida. Fla. Anthrop., Vol
XI, No. 1 (Feb.), pp. 23-32. Tallahassee.
Wormington, H. M.
1957 Anrient Mfn in N"rth America. Fourth Ed. Denver Museum
of Natural History, Popular Series, No. 4, Denver, Colo.
The Florida State University
Clay balls and associated a.rtifacts from sites in
Walton County, Florida.
The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. XII, No. 4, 1c5
T' '0 'VnREOPni' POrTTEr Vi'S-le FDOn, THlE plrP(T.. I.ANDINC SITE
HENPY COUNTY, ALA.AMA*
Robert T". Neuiman
Two pottery vessels are described from the site on the low r Chattahoochee
River excavated by C. E. Moore in 1906. One is a tripartite water bottle with
arched, connecting tubular necks surmounted by a human effigy head. The other
is a globular jar with four loop handles. The site, now destroyed by floods,
appears to have belonged to the Ft. Walton Phase. Abstract by C. H.F.
Clarence B. Moore, in his report on archaeological exrlo-
rations in the lower Chattahoochee Iiver area, mulntioned stopping
at Purcell's Landing (Moor-, 1907, p. 446). During hi vi=it
there he invest igated four moundl. In ilpcr ibin', one of the
mounds, he states that it iQ located on the riverbank and that a
large part of the mound lh:'d boon wanlihd nway Ib floodwaters. The
remnant of the mound waq ilug by hiq party and found to be com-
posed "partly of clay nnd partly of mandy clay, in which were
numerous mnasqe of rock." MoorP recovered no artifacts from this
During the first half of 1959, while conducting archaeologi-
cal salvage invetigationn along the e hattahoochoe Hivor near
Colurimin, Alabnma, I had the plniaurp of meeting 'Tr. T. Z. Atkeson.
Mr. Atkeqon, a local ornithologist, live in the Purcell house
about three miles north of Columbia. He met the Moore Expedition
during their work at Purcell'l Lnnding and has, himself, surface
collections from archnaologicrl sites nearbv.
Mr. Atkeenn kindly showed me his collection of artifnctz and
among the more intere-ting objects were two vessels from Purcell's
Landing. Thov were exposed in the last remaining remnant of a
mound after the de(tructive flood along the Chattahoochee River in
1929. This remnant was a portion of the same tinuulni dug into by
C. IB. Moore.
The fi- t vepzel (Fig. 1, a and h), is a eioieffigy bottle
The clay seems to hnve been tempered with moderate amounts of
*Submitted with the permission of the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution.
small, mica and shell particles. The exterior surface is quite
smooth and slightly glossy. In color, it is almost a uniform
The base of the vessel is composed of three connecting spheres
arranged in a triangular pattern. Extending up from the top of
each sphere, and bending gently inward to a common junction,
there is a tubular stem or neck. A human effigy head rests upon
the junction of the three tubes. The head faces directly toward
one of the necks; the back of the head lies between the other two
necks. The face has two shallow incisions representing eyes and
a protruding nose with nostrils. The ears are semicircular and
extend out from the sides of the head. A portion of the right
ear is missing. The lower lip of the mouth protrudes noticeably
and it is very possible that this projection represents a gorget
or pendant rather than a lip. Extending across the top of the
head and down behind the ears, there is a raised, rather plain,
scalloped crown. The back of the head has a round, protruding,
aperature which serves as the vessel orifice. The total height
of the bottle is 21.3 centimeters.
The second vessel (Fig. l,c), is a globular-shaped pot with
a flaring rim. It was manufactured from a fine textured clay and
appears to be tempered with mica and shell. The interior surface
is smooth and grey in color. The exterior is also smooth,
slightly glossy and, although fired-clouded,generally black in
color. There are four vertically oriented, equally spaced, loop
handles which extend from immediately below the lip to the upper
portion of the vessel shoulder. One of these appendages is miss-
ing. The pot measures about 9.7 centimeters in height and has a
maximum diameter of 12.9 centimeters.
Accompanied by Mr. Atkeson, I visited the area of the finds;
however, nothing whatsoever remains of the mound. In the same
field, which has been intensively cultivated, we collected pot-
tery sherds and stone artifacts from the freshly plowed surface.
Subsequently, the vessel anti the surface collection were shown
to Dr. William H. Sears of the Florida State Museum. Dr. Sears
felt that the majority of the identifiable sherds and the two
vessels belong to the Fort Walton culture period, ca. 1400 A. D.
Moore, Clarence B.
1907. Mounds of the Lower Chattahoochee and the Flint Pivers.
Journal of the Academy of Natural Sciences of Philadel-
phia, Vol. 13.
0 FRONT b REAR
Plate 1. Two Pottery veqaels from
the Purcell Landing Site
The Florida Anthropologist, Vol. XII, No, 4, 1959
AN UNUSUAL SHELL COPFPrT FROM TRPRA EIA ISLAND
MANATEE COUNTY, FLORI)A
W. J. Armistead
The finely finished shell gorget my represent an alligator. It was possi-
ble to determine the sequence of drilling of the three pairs of holes on the betk.
Abstract ly C.-H. F.
On December 11, 1954 Dr. Wilfred T. Neill, then President of
-the Florida Anthropological Society, was in Tampa visiting mem-
bers of the Tampa Bay Chapter of the society. Dr. Neill express-
ed a desire to see some typical aboriginal sites in the Tampa Bay
area, so a fielt party consisting of Dr. Neill, C. L. Knight,
Harry L. Goetv, a student member, and the writer made a. quick
tour of the eastern shore of Tamp. Bay as far south as Shaw's
Point on the Manatee River.
Our longest visit was at the site on Terra Ceia Island on
which Ripley P. Bullen reported in the Florida Anthropological
Society's Publication No. 3, "The Terra Ceia Site, Manatee,
County, Florida". This complex consists of a sand and shell
temple mound, known as the Madira-Bickle Mound, and an extensive
and high shell midden along the adjacent waterfront. This site is
considered to have been occupied from Perico Island Period to
late Safety Harbor Period.
A surface collection was made by the party, all items coming
from the midden area and beach. Included were 57 potsherds, all
plain sand tempered, 12 small shell hammers (Strombus pugilis), 1
large shell pick, type A (Bur.on contrarium), 1 fragment of a
Busycon columella plummet, 1 chisel made from the columella of a
Fasciolaria gigantea and a shell gorget of unusual design.
This gorget illustrated in the accompanying line drawing, is
made of an almost flat section of the outer whorl of an extremely
large Rusvcon Contrarium shell and is 13.5 centimeters long and 4
It is apparently an effigy but it iq difficult to determine
the animal it represents. The larger end bears a great resem-
balance to the head of an alligator and the opposite end is beauti-
fully made in a form which seems to represent the hind legs and
tail of an alligator, but the two ends are not in proper pro-
portion, one to the other. Pegardless of this discrepancy in
comparative si7es,the gorget i= symmetricnllv designed and beauti-
There ale three pairs of drilled holes on the convex side of
the gorget, two pairs of which (nairs No. 1 and No. 2) are broken
through, leaving only No. 3 with bridge intact.
All of these holes are drilled at angles so that each pair
meets just before breaking through to the other side of the
gorget. As can be seen in the illustration,pair No. 1 is drilled
at right angles to the long axis of the gorget, while pairs
No. 2 and No. 3 are drilled approximately in line with the long
With hole No. 1 located near one end of the gorget and hav-
ing been drilled in such a manner that vertical suspension from
a single point is indicated, it is reasonable to assume that thick
gorget was first worn suspended vertically from hole No. 1.
As this hole is now broken through and no longer usable, and
as hole No. 3 is still intact, it is logical to deduce that when
hole No. 1 was rendered useless, holes No. 2 and No. 3 were drill-
ed and that the gorget was then worn in a horizontal position,
suspended from two points.
To further this assumption of hole sequence (first No. 1
then No. 2 and No. 3), the following facts are noticeable in the
construction of the holes. Hole No. I was drilled with a re-
latively large and bluntpointed drill. Hole No. 2 was apparent-
ly started with the same (or very similar) drill as this hole was
begun large, then finished with a slimmer and sharper drill. From
all appearances hole No. 3 was made with the same (or a similar)
slim drill as was used to finish hole No. 2.
This artifact bears little resemblance in design or hole
treatment to typical ornaments of this area, but is more suggest-
ive of the carved material from the glades area to the south. As
Terra Ceia Island is lO6cted in an area considered to be border-
line between glades and Central Florida cultures, this gorget
could be an item actually brought up from the south or it could
have been made locally carrying out a design showing southern in-
Bullen, Ripley P.
1951 "The Terra Ceia Site, Manatee County, Florida". Florida
Anthropological Snciety Publications No. 3. Gainesville.
INDEX, VOL. XII, 1959
Armistead, W. J.
An unusual shell gorget from Terra Ceia Island, Manatee
County, Florida . . . .. ... 105
Benson, Carl A.
Some pottery contributions to early fabric techniques 65
Inside back covers, Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4 . . .
Bullen, Ripley P.
What was it? . . . . . 75
Bullen, Ripley P., and Edward H. Dolan
The Johnson Lake Site, Marion County, Florida .. 77
Campbell, T. N.
Choctaw subsistance: Ethnographic notes from the
Lincecum Manuscript . . . . 9
Fairbanks, Charles H.
Additional Elliot's Point Complex site. . ... 95
Book Review: Fundaburk; Southeastern Indians, Life
Portraits . . . . . 31
Howard, James H.
Some Chickasaw Fetishes . . . . 47
Dating English Pipestems . . . .. 71
Laxon, D. D.
Excavations in Dade County during 1957 . . 1
Excavations in Dade and Broward Counties, 1958 .... 33
Three salvaged Tequesta sites in Dade County, Florida 57
Neuman, Robert W.
Two unrecorded pottery vessels from the Purcell Landing
Site, Henry County, Alabama . . .. 101
An aboriginal shell mound at Drum Point, Alligator
Harbor, Franklin County, Florida . . ... 41
Sears, William H.
A-296 A Seminole site in Alachua County . .. 25
Weigel, Robert D.
Bird remains from South Indian Field, Florida . .. 73
Arnade, Charles W.
1959. Florida on trial 1593 1602. Published cooperatively
by St. Augustine Hiqtorical Soc. & Univ. or Miami Preqs. Coral
Gables. 100 pp., 6 unnumbered fig=., 4 maps. Sl.no
A translation and transcription of the evidence presented at
the hearings in 1602 aq to whether Florida should( be abandoned.
A badly needed piece of Florida historv.
Carter, Clarence E., ComI. & ed.
1959. The Territorial Paperq of the I'. S. Vol. XXIII,The Ter-
ritory of Florida 1828-1834. U. S. Govt. Printing Office, 1959,
The third volume in the Florida territorial papers.Basic for
any research in the period. Doea not publish Indian mater-
ialp primarily but includes a tremendous amount of information.
Cotter, John L.
1958 Archeological excavationn at Jamestown, Virginia. Nat-
ional Park Service, Archeological Reasarch Series, No.4,Wash-
ington. 299 pp., 92 figq., 39 tables. $2.75.
A systematic description, analvysi, and evaluation of the his-
toric English material uncovered at Jamestown during the excava-
tions conducted from 1934 to the present. This may well repre -
Pent the major excavation under the MlI=ion 66 program of the
National Park Service. Everyone interested in the preservation
and interpretation of Florida's historic past should read this
1959. Seminole patchwork. American Indian Hobbyist, Vol. 6,
nos. 1 & 2, up. I 18, many illua. & diagrams. 65C from Ameri-
can Indian Hobbiat, 1300 Logan St. Denver 3. Colo.
Accurate detailed instructions for patchwork and various stan-
dard itenis of clothing; historical comments lpes reliable.
THE FLORIDA ANTHplnPnLOCIST
VOL. XII DECEMIER, 1959 No. 4
The Johnson Lake Site, Marion rnlntv, Florida. . 77
Rullen, Rinlev P. and Edwprd P. Plan
Additional Elliot's Point romnlep aits. . ... 95
Fairbanks, "harles IH.
Two unrecorddr pottery veRaplp from the Purcell Landing
Site, Hpnry County Alabama.. . . .. .101
Neumnn, Rohprt .c
An unusual hell gorgpt from Terra r pi Islpnd, Manatee
county, Florida. . . . .. 105
Index. . . . . ... . .. 108
Book Notice . . . ... Inide back cover
C.H.F. and .r.S.
Members should advise us promrtlv of change of addrpes.
Current postal attitudes mean that we loose the copies when
you do not advise us of your new address.
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