REDEFINING SAFETY HARBOR:
LATE PREHISTORIC/PROTOHISTORIC ARCHAEOLOGY
IN WEST PENINSULAR FLORIDA
JEFFREY McCLAIN MITCHEM
A DISSERTATION PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
DOCTOR OF PHILOSOPHY
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA
Jeffrey McClain Mitchem
Many people have helped me during this endeavor.
First, I must thank those individuals who read drafts of Chapter 2 and/or provided me with unpublished information on Safety Harbor sites. The contributions of these people were indispensable, and I am extremely grateful. They are Marion Almy, Walter Askew, Bob Austin, Jan Ballo, John Beriault, Laura Branstetter, Bill Burger, Mark Burnett, Bill Dayton, Joan Deming, Albert Goodyear, Jennifer Hamilton, Laura Kammerer, Paul Lien, George Luer, Bill Marquardt, Gus Nelson, Don Ness, Harry Piper, Bruce Smith, Marion Smith, and Ray Williams. Of these, I must single out Bob Austin, Bill Burger, and George Luer for truly going way beyond professional courtesy in providing essential data.
The Tatham Mound project has been a fantastic and unforgettable experience. When we began working there, I never dreamed that it would contain such interesting and scientifically valuable objects and information. I owe a great debt of gratitude to my colleague Brent Weisman, who first discovered the site and co-directed
the initial excavations there. Don Sheppard was also instrumental in organizing and coordinating many of the early aspects of the project. I also want to thank all of the students who participated in the three field schools at the site, sometimes under very adverse conditions. John Marron served admirably as field assistant during the third season. Dale Hutchinson, the project osteologist during the second and third seasons, has become a close friend and sounding board for ideas and potential interpretations of the site data. It has been a pleasure to collaborate with such a scholar. I look forward with anticipation to his dissertation on the Tatham skeletal remains.
The many members of the Withlacoochee River Archaeology Council who volunteered to help with excavation and laboratory work on the Tatham project were indispensable. Many of these people gave up weekends and got up at painfully early hours to participate. Close to 100 WRAC members volunteered on the project, and I want to express my heartfelt thanks. I must-single out four WRAC members who faithfully showed up: George Hamilton, Cheryl Jacob, Jean Kratzer, and Jack Quinn.
I gratefully acknowledge the Boy Scouts of America, including Directors George Preston and Bill Ort, for
allowing us to work at Tatham, and for providing accomodations and laboratory space on their property. Paul Anderson, the ranger for the McGregor Smith Scout Reservation, helped out in many ways, especially with logistical and transportation problems. Paul and his wife, Barbie, took on many of the tasks of scheduling volunteers and relaying messages to us during the fieldwork. Paul also helped us out of several bad situations, most involving uncooperative vehicles or septic tanks. I think I speak for the entire crew when I express great thanks to Paul.
Funding for the Tatham project and other aspects of my research has come from several sources. The great majority was voluntarily provided by a single individual, who wishes to remain anonymous at present. His generous support of the Tatham project resulted in the most complete and best-documented body of data from any known Safety Harbor site. Words cannot adequately express my gratitude, but I hope that this dissertation will indicate that the funds were well spent.
Additional support was provided by the Division of Parks and Recreation, Florida Department of Natural Resources (four grants to Jerald Milanich for research on the route of Hernando de Soto); the Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of State
(funded the project which resulted in the initial discovery of the Tatham Mound); the Division of Sponsored Research, University of Florida (provided a graduate assistantship); the Institute for Early Contact Period Studies, University of Florida (provided a graduate assistantship and other funding); the Department of Anthropology, University of Florida (awarded a Charles H. Fairbanks Scholarship); the Tinker Foundation (awarded a field research grant for travel to Spain, administered by the Center for Latin American Studies, University of Florida); the Department of Anthropology, University of Illinois (provided support to Dale Hutchinson for analysis and transportation of collections); and the Bead Society (awarded a grant to study the Spanish beads). Support in the form of equipment, laboratory space, and facilities was provided by the Anthropology Departments of the Florida Museum of Natural History (FMNH) and the University of Florida.
Many curators and staff members of the FMNH and
students helped with the Tatham project. These include Nancy Aparicio, Kurt Auffenberg, Dana Austin, Gianna Browne, Ed Chaney, Ann Cordell, Kathleen Deagan, David Hall, Ken Johnson, Jon Leader, Elise LeCompte, Robert LeCompte, William Maples, Mondi Mason, Ed Napoleon, Lee Newsom, Claudine Payne, Ann Poulos, Guy Prentice, Donna
Ruhl, Mike Russo, Fred Thompson, and Maurice Williams. I thank them for their help. A special word of thanks is due to Dara Silverberg.
Bunny Stafford of the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences took most of the photographs included in this study. A number of people at various institutions also provided help in different forms, and I would like to acknowledge their help. They are Jeffrey P. Brain (Peabody Museum, Harvard University); Bruce Chappell (P. K. Yonge Library, UF); Cheryl P. Claassen (Appalachian State University); Charles Ewen, Calvin Jones, John Scarry, Margie Scarry, Jim Miller, Herb Bump, Jamie Levy, and David Muncher (Division of Historical Resources, Florida Department of State); Christopher S. Peebles (Indiana University); T. M. Hamilton (Miami, Missouri); Thomas F. Kehoe and Claudia L. Jacobson (Milwaukee Public Museum); George Hamell (New York State Museum); Clark Larsen (Northern Illinois University); Alex Lodding (Chalmers Institute of Technology, G6teborg); Fernando Martin (Real Armeria, Madrid); Barbara Purdy (UF Anthropology Department); Betsy Reitz and Marvin Smith (University of Georgia); Sargento Major Ramon Sanchez Serantes (Museo del Ejercito, Madrid); William L. Stern (UF Botany
Department); Douglas Ubelaker (Smithsonian Institution); and Bradley Vierra (University of New Mexico).
Each of the members of my doctoral committee has provided valuable input into my training and into this dissertation. William Marquardt provided me with much unpublished information on his work in southwest Florida, and discussions with him have aided my attempts to make sense of the complex cultural interactions going on in that area during the late prehistoric period.
Prudence Rice first introduced me to the scientific aspects of technological analysis of archaeological ceramics. Her training has enabled me to investigate many questions concerning Safety Harbor that otherwise would have been overlooked. Pru has also provided me with good advice on matters ranging from job applications to the writing of grant proposals. Her constructive comments on my writing have improved many past papers, as well as this one. She also makes fantastic chocolate chip cookies.
Elizabeth Wing introduced me to zooarchaeology, and even though I chose not to pursue this avenue full time, I can tell a fish bone from a bird or mammal,, something which I could not do previously. In fact, I probably learned more from Liz's zooarchaeology course than from
any other course in my college career. She is also the only person I've ever known who had a pet water buffalo.
At the oral portion of my qualifying examination, Michael Gannon asked me the only question I was unable to answer. He asked on what evidence I based the claim that the Tocobaga Indians (a historic group near Tampa Bay) were a Timucuan group. I didn't have an answer, but in trying to find out, I came across many other obscure facts which have helped me interpret some of the Safety Harbor sites in that area. I have also benefited from attending and participating in several conferences sponsored by Dr. Gannon through the Institute for Early Contact Period Studies.
The chairman of my doctoral committee is Jerald
Milanich. since 1974, when I took my first anthropology course from him, Jerry has served as my inspiration and mentor in archaeology. Though he probably does not remember, it was he who talked me into majoring in anthropology as an undergraduate. My first field experience was under his tutelage in 1976. While I was working on my Master's degree at the University of South Florida, I mentioned him so much that some fellow students began calling me "Little Milanich."1
It was Jerry who talked me into pursuing a doctoral degree, and it was under his direction that I supervised
the Tatham excavations. His style of teaching is to give students free rein, if they wish. I thrived in this environment, and Jerry has always been willing to discuss any problems, questions, or any other aspect of research about which I was unsure. He also made sure that I was covered financially, and he lavished funds on me which allowed me to travel to museums and conferences to study collections and interact with colleagues. For all of this, I am overwhelmed with gratitude. It has been good to be one of "Jerry's Kids."
I also want to express my thanks to Kathleen A.
Deagan, who was originally a member of my committee, but her busy research schedule conflicted with my timetable for completion. She provided thoughtful comments on my initial proposal, and has helped me to understand many aspects of early Spanish/Indian contact.
I must also acknowledge the support of my
relatives, who have supported much of my education, and helped me through many rough situations. Their patience, love, and support have sustained me, and it is impossible to repay them. Finally, I thank Bonnie McEwan, who understands what it is like to complete a doctorate, and who is a beautiful woman and an excellent scientist. Her love and support have' made it all worthwhile.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
LIST OF TABLES........................................ xiv
LIST OF FIGUJRES. .. .. .. ... ............ .. ... ... ... .xviii
KEY TO ABBREVIATIONS................................ xxi
1 INTRODUCTION. .. ... .. .............. .. .. .. .. 1
2 PREVIOUS ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH ON SAFETY
Description of Sts...............10
Dixi n evyCuntesv.............. 10
Citrus County. ... ................. .. .. 15
Lake County......................... .. .. .. 27
Orange County................................. 31
Hernando County.............................. 38
Pasco County................................. 44
Pinellas County. .. .. ................ 49
Hillsborough County................ 97
Polk County............ .. .. ...... .. ... 137
Manatee County............................... 147
Hardee County................................ 202
DeSoto County................................ 207
Charlotte County. .. ... .. .. ......... .. 231
Lee County. .. .................... ... 257
Collier County ............................ 287
Other Counties............................... 299
Discussion of Known Sites...................... 304
3 TATHAM MOUND: A CASE STUDY OF
SPANISH/INDIAN CONTACT..................... 306
First Field Season............................. 312
Research Design and Methodology............. 312
Description of Results...................... 317
Preliminary Interpretations.................. 321
Second Field Season. .. ... ... ............. 327
Research Design and Methodology ............ 327
Description of Results ................. 332
Preliminary Interpretations ............ 336
Third Field Season............................ 342
Research Design and Methodology ..............342
Description of Results....................... 346
Summary of Tatham Mound Excavation Data ........352
ceramics ........ .. ................... ... 352
Lithic Artifacts. .. ............. ...... 393
minerals and Miscellaneous Artifac..s. 408
Faunal Remains. .. ............. ..... .. 416
Precontact Copper Artifacts ............. 419
European Artifacts........................... 434
Seminole period or later................... 434
Spanish glass beads........................ 436
European metal artifact s .................452
Mortuary Practices and Burial Associations ... 468
Mortuary Practices ............. ......... ... 468
Burial Associations .................... 474
Precontact stratum .............. 474
Postcontact stratum................... 483
Cut bones................................. 495
Ancillary Studies............................. 498
Native Copper Sourcing..................... 498
Postcontact Metal .................... 499
Shell Sourcing. .. ... .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. .. ... 499
Botanical Remains. .. .. .. .. .. ............. 500
Plant fibers .................... ........ 500
Carbonized and "fossilized" seeds ....... 501
Preserved wood and bark.................... 502
Charred w.jood. .. ...................... 502
Soil Analyses................................ 503
Stratipr apa ......t....................504
Datingthos hod Rsult nd......u..... 509
Artifact Associations................ 509
Chronometric Ds..t es......... 519
Sequence of Events........................... 528
Interaction with Other Aboriginal
Spanish/Indian Contact at the Tatham
Mound .................................... 537
The Tatham Mound in the Context of
Safety Harbor ............................ 545
4 SAFETY HARBOR: A CULTURE IN WEST PENINSULAR
FLORIDA .................................... 550
Spatial-Temporal Units ....................... 553
Phase Definition ........................... 557
Definition of Regional Variants ............ 567
Non-Ceramic Aboriginal Artifacts ............. 579
Site Types and Settlement Patterns ........... 583
Subsistence Information ....................... 586
Mortuary Practices ........................... 588
Sociopolitical organization .................. 594
Directions for Future Research ............... 600
REFERENCES ......................................... 606
BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ 651
LIST OF TABLES
1 Artifacts from Duval Island (8Ci5) in FMNH..... 19 2 Artifacts from Tiger Tail Bay Midden (8Cil36).. 23
3 Artifacts from an Unrecorded Shell Midden on
the Chassahowitzka River...................... 28
4 Artifacts from 80r2 in FMNH................... 34
5 Artifacts from the Palm Grove Gardens Site
(8He8) in FMNH................................. 40
6 European Artifacts from the Safety Harbor
Site (8Pi2) ................................. 54
7 Beads Collected from S. T. Walker's Spoil at
the Bayview Mound (8Pi7)....................... 62
8 European Artifacts from the Seven Oaks Site
(8Pi8) in FMNH............................... 65
9 European Artifacts from the Bayview/Seven
Oaks Mound (8Pi7/8Pi8) Displayed in the
Oldsmar Museum................................. 71
10 Artifacts from the Booth Point Site (8Pi36)
in FMNH ...................................... 81
11 Glass Beads from the Picnic Mound (8Hi3) in
the Simpson Collection, FMNH................. 104
12 Artifacts from Mill Point 1 (8Hil6) in FMNH.... 118 13 Artifacts from Old Shell Point (8Hi31)
in FMNH ...................................... 121
14 Artifacts from the Gardensville Mound (8Hi37)
in FMNH ...................................... 122
15 Artifacts from the De Shone Place Site (8Hi74)
in FMNH ...................................... 123
16 Artifacts from the T. L. Barker Site (8Hi79)
in FMNH ...................................... 125
17 Artifacts from the Elsberry Site (8Hil0l)
in FMNH ...................................... 127
18 Artifacts from the Henriquez Mound (8Hi1077)
in UMMA ...................................... 131
19 Ceramics from Two Sites near Tampa Bay
in NMNH ...................................... 135
20 Artifacts from Parrish Mound #3 (8Ma3)
in FMNH ...................................... 156
21 Artifacts from the Harbor Key Platform Mound
(8Ma13) in FMNH ............................ .. 164
22 Artifacts from the Snead Island I Site
(8Mal8) in FMNH ................. ............. 170
23 Artifacts from the Feeney Site (8Ma21)
in FMNH ...................................... 173
24 Artifacts from the Rye Bridge Mound (8Ma715)
in SFM ......................... ........... 195
25 European Beads in SFM from an Unknown Manatee
County Site .................................. 198
26 Glass Beads in a Private Collection from the
Myakka Area, Southeastern Manatee County ..... 200 27 Artifacts from the Bostwick Mound (8Hr52)
at USF ....................................... 205
28 Artifacts from the Weber Burial Mound (8So20)
in FMNH ...................................... 224
29 A Collection from Cayo Pelau (8Chl) .............. 234
30 A Private Collection of European Material
from Cayo Pelau (8Chl) .......................... 236
31 Goggin's Ceramic Collection from Big Mound
Key (8ChlO) .................................. 241
32 Partial List of Bullen and Bullen's Collection
from Big Mound Key (8ChlO) in FMNH ........... 242
33 Goggin's Collection from 8Ch3l ................. 246
34 Ceramics from the Cape Haze Site (8Ch48) ....... 249 35 Artifacts from the Burial Area at the Dunwody
Site (8Ch61) ................................. 251
36 Artifacts from the Shell Ridge Area of the
Dunwody Site (8Ch61) ........................ 252
37 Artifacts from Mound Key (8LL2) at UPM ......... 262 38 Metal Artifacts Attributed to Punta Rassa
(8LL7) in MAI, but Probably from 8LL2 ........ 267 39 Ceramics in a Collection from the Pineland
Burial Mound ................................. 275
40 Artifacts in a Private Collection from the
Pineland Burial Mound ........................... 276
41 Artifacts in FMNH from Excavation and Surface
Collection at the Indian Field Site (8LL39).. 278 42 Artifacts Recovered from Burials in the Main
Portion of the Pine Island 8 Site (8LL40)
by C. B. Moore in 1904 ....................... 282
43 European Beads in a Private Collection from
the Galt Island Burial Mound (8LL81) ......... 285 44 Ceramics from the Shell Point Burial Mound,
Lee County ................................... 287
45 Artifacts Removed from the Gordon's Pass Sand
Mound/Kirkland Mound (8Cr57) ................. 292
46 European Artifacts in a Collection from the
Gordon's Pass Sand Mound/Kirkland
Mound (8Cr57) .............................. 293
47 Ceramics from the Lake Trafford Burial Mound
(8Cr80) in YPM ............................... 298
48 Ceramics from the Tatham Mound ................... 353
49 Ceramic Types Recovered from Precontact and
Postcontact Strata in the Tatham Mound ....... 392 50 Lithic Artifacts from the Tatham Mound ......... 394 51 Shell Artifacts from the Tatham Mound .......... 403 52 Minerals and Miscellaneous Artifacts from
the Tatham Mound ................................ 409
53 Faunal Remains from the Tatham Mound ........... 417
54 Native Copper Artifacts from the Precontact
Stratum of the Tatham Mound .................. 420
55 Seminole and Later Material from the
Tatham Mound ................................. 435
56 Spanish Glass Beads from the Tatham Mound ...... 437 57 European (Pre-Seminole) Metal Artifacts
from the Tatham Mound ........................ 453
58 Glass Bead Inter-Site Comparisons .............. 513
59 Uncorrected Radiocarbon Dates from the
Tatham Mound ................................. 521
60 Calibrated Ages of Radiocarbon Samples from
the Tatham Mound ............................. 522
LIST OF FIGURES
1 Map of Peninsular Florida Showing Pertinent
Counties ..................................... 9
2 Map of Florida Showing the Location of the
Tatham Mound ................................. 307
3 Topographic Map of the Tatham Mound Prior to
Excavation ................................... 316
4 Englewood Incised and Sarasota Incised Ceramics
from the Tatham Mound ........................ 359
5 Safety Harbor Incised Vessel from the Tatham
Mound ........................................ 363
6 Safety Harbor Incised, St. Johns Cob Marked,
and Prairie Cord Marked Vessels from the
Tatham Mound ................................. 366
7 Point Washington Incised Vessels and Ground
Stone Celts from the Tatham Mound ............ 369
8 St. Johns Dentate Stamped, Sand Tempered Plain,
and St. Johns Plain Ceramics from the Tatham
Mound ........................................ 374
9 St. Johns Plain Ceramics from the Tatham
Mound ........................................ 378
10 Pasco Plain, St. Johns Plain, and Belle Glade
Plain-Like Ceramics from the Tatham Mound .... 381
11 St. Johns Plain Vessels from the Tatham
Mound ........................................ 383
12 St. Johns Plain Vessels from the Tatham
Mound ........................................ 385
13 St. Johns Check Stamped and St. Johns Plain
Vessels from the Tatham Mound ................ 388
14 Reconstructed St. Johns Check Stamped and
Sand Tempered Plain Vessels from the Tatham
15 Pinellas Projectile Points, St. Johns Plain
Vessel, and Large Side-Notched Flaked Blade
from the Tatham Mound .................... 397
16 Quartz Crystal Pendants and Busycon Shell Cups
from the Tatham Mound.......................... 401
17 Engraved Bark Object from the Tatham Mound.......414 18 Radiograph of Circular Copper Plate
(Feature #9) from the Tatham Mo und.... 422 19 Copper Plume Ornament (in original matrix)
and Copper Ear Spool from Burial #105... 425
20 Radiograph of Copper Plume Ornament from
Burial #105..................................... 427
21 Copper-Covered Wooden Baton (in original
matrix) fromrul 10 ia.......... 430
22 Radiograph of Copper-Covered Wooden Bato n ... 433
23 Glass and Metal Beads from the Tatham Mound .... 451 24 Silver Celt Effigy Pendant and Drilled Silver
Rod Bead from Burial #2........................ 459
25 Armor Plate and Rolled Iron Bead from
26 Iron Artifacts from the Tatham Mound .............467
27 Burial #60 from the Tatham Mound.................. 472
28 Shell and Glass Beads with Burials from the
Tatham Mound. .. .. .. .................. .. .. 477
29 East-West Profile of the Tatham Mound .......... 506
30 North-South Profile of the Tatham Mound ..........507
31 Map Showing Locations of Tatham, Weeki Wachee,
and Ruth Smith Mounds......................... 547
32 Map Showing Extent of the Safety Harbor
Culture Area ................................. 555
33 Map Showing Regional Variants of Safety Harbor
Culture ...................................... 569
Cal. AD FMNH FMSF FPS FSU HPM MAI MNI MPM
KEY TO ABBREVIATIONS
Anno Domini (refers to dates in the Christian
American Museum of Natural History, New York Before Christ (refers to dates prior to the
Before Present (for dating purposes, means
years before A.D. 1950)
Calibrated calendar years (used for reporting
calibrated radiocarbon dates)
Florida Museum of Natural History, Gainesville Florida Master Site Files Florida Park Service Florida State University, Tallahassee Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology,
Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts Museum of the American Indian, Heye
Foundation, New York
Minimum number of individuals Milwaukee Public Museum
SFM SHAHS TL TMM UF
National Museum of Natural History,
Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D. C.
(formerly U. S. National Museum)
Ocmulgee National Monument, Macon, Georgia R. S. Peabody Foundation, Phillips Academy,
Sarasota County Historical Commission Southeast Archeological Center, National Park
South Florida Museum, Bradenton Safety Harbor Area Historical Society Thermoluminescence Temple Mound Museum, Fort Walton Beach University of Florida, Gainesville University of Michigan Museum of Anthropology,
University of Pennsylvania Museum,
University of South Florida, Tampa Works Progress Administration Withlacoochee River Archaeology Council Yale Peabody Museum, New Haven, Connecticut
Abstract of Dissertation Presented to the Graduate
School of the University of Florida in Partial
Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Doctor of Philosophy
REDEFINING SAFETY HARBOR:
LATE PREHISTORIC/PROTOHISTORIC ARCHAEOLOGY
IN WEST PENINSULAR FLORIDA By
Jeffrey McClain Mitchem
Chairman: Jerald T. Milanich Major Department: Anthropology
This study presents new data and a redefinition of the late prehistoric and postcontact Safety Harbor archaeological culture of west peninsular Florida. The Indians of this area were the first aborigines contacted by the early sixteenth century Spanish expeditions of P~nfilo de Narvdez and Hernando de Soto.
A complete review of known Safety Harbor sites is presented, along with descriptions and interpretations of previously undescribed collections, both publicly and privately owned. A description of the results of three field seasons of excavation at the Tatham Mound in Citrus County, Florida, is then presented. This previously undisturbed site yielded abundant evidence of
early sixteenth century Spanish contact, including evidence of a probable epidemic and at least two cut human bones indicating violent confrontations with Spanish explorers. Several hundred primary and secondary human burials were recovered. The recovery of dozens of broken pottery vessels and many Busycon shell cups on the mound surface indicated that black drink rituals had been carried out prior to the mound's abandonment.
The lower stratum of the mound yielded a small number of precontact burials accompanied by copper objects, ground and polished stone celts, galena, and abundant shell beads. The circumstances of burial suggest that these were high-status individuals.
Using the newly-obtained data, a provisional phase sequence for Safety Harbor is presented. Four phases are proposed: Englewood (A.D. 900-1000); Pinellas (A.D. 1000-1500); Tatham (A.D. 1500-1567); and Bayview (A.D. 1567-1725). Five regional variants of Safety Harbor are also proposed: Northern; Circum-Tampa Bay; Manasota; Inland; and South Florida. These units are proposed to aid in clarifying the spatial and temporal relationships between Safety Harbor groups and other cultures in Florida and southeastern North America.
In 1949, Gordon R. Willey published his definition of the archaeological culture centered around Tampa Bay in the late prehistoric and early Spanish contact period. He referred to this as the Safety Harbor Period, and included descriptions and illustrations of the artifacts typically found on Safety Harbor sites (1949a:475-488).
His definition has been used as the standard
reference ever since, and no attempts have been made to revise his criteria to any major extent. Archaeological research in the intervening four decades, especially since 1970, has yielded a large data base of information about Safety Harbor sites. In addition, with the advent of radiocarbon dating and accurate calibration curves, it is now possible to demonstrate that the earliest Safety Harbor sites are much older than the A.D. 1500 suggested by Willey (1949a:488). Studies of artifacts, especially European artifacts, have resulted in the ability to date postcontact deposits precisely (Deagan 1987; Smith and Good 1982).
Because of these changes, it is time to take a
critical look at Willey's definition and to update or alter it to include new data. In this study, a redefinition of the Safety Harbor Culture is presented, based on a thorough discussion of all known Safety Harbor sites. Chapter 2 includes descriptions of many collections which have never been published, as well as reinterpretations of previously reported sites. Chapter
3 is a site report on excavations conducted in 1985 and 1986 at the Tatham Mound (number 8Ci2O3 in the Florida Master Site Files EFMSF] numbering system), a previously undisturbed Safety Harbor burial mound that contained evidence from both precontact and postcontact occupations. The final chapter presents a redefinition of Safety Harbor, including a proposed phase sequence and the identification of regional variants. In this new definition, Willey's (1949a:470-475) Englewood Period is subsumed as the first phase of Safety Harbor.
This study should not be considered the final word on Safety Harbor. As originally conceived, it was to include a completely revised ceramic classification; an in-depth consideration of the interaction between Safety Harbor groups and early Spanish explorers, missionaries, and colonists; and a greatly expanded consideration of sociopolitical organization and structure. However, the
volume of previously unpublished data was much greater than anticipated, and time and manuscript length constraints prevented a full coverage of all of these categories. Readers of this work should remember these factors when judging it. More refinements will be forthcoming, and the final section of Chapter 4 presents the topics deemed (by the present author) most important for future research.
In describing the sites and collections in this
study, Willey's (1949a:472-475, 479-486) definitions of ceramic types are generally followed. However, a few minor, but important modifications are necessary. First, Englewood Plain (1949a:474) is not considered a valid type, because sand tempered plain wares generally cannot be distinguished from one another. In this case, this fact is especially important because the identification of plain ware as Englewood Plain would be very significant in terms of chronological interpretation.
The second modification has already been suggested by George M. Luer (1985:236). Willey's (1949a:474) definition of the type Sarasota Incised should be broadened to include sand tempered paste as well as the chalky St. Johns paste, since specimens with Sarasota
Incised motifs on sand tempered paste have been recovered.
The third modification involves Willey's
(1949a:482) definition of Pinellas Plain. He glossed over the fact that some sherds of this ware tended to have laminated, crumbly paste. However, when Pinellas Plain from the village area at the type site (8Pi2) is examined, almost all of the sherds have very laminated paste (Griffin and Bullen 1950:10). Examination of sherds from other Safety Harbor. sites, especially those in the area around Tampa Bay, indicates that the laminated paste is the norm, rather than the exception, for Pinellas Plain. This characteristic should be incorporated as one of the main identifying traits of Pinellas Plain.
The most drastic proposed modifications are to
Willey's definitions of Pinellas Incised (1949a:482) and a Fort Walton type called Point Washington Incised (1949a:463). William H. Sears (1967:37-39, 57-58) discussed problems and proposed changes to these types, but both his and Willey's criteria were vague and ambiguous. It should be noted that John F. Scarry (1985:220) subsumed both types under Lake Jackson Incised for the Fort Walton area. He also subsumed one variant of Pinellas Incised under the type Cool Branch
Incised (1985:214). However, in the Safety Harbor area, there are enough differences in vessel form and decorative motifs to warrant separate types for Point Washington Incised and Pinellas Incised.
When Pinellas Incised and Point Washington Incised are referred to in this study, the criteria published in Mitchem, Smith et al. (1985:187-189) are used to distinguish them, with minor alterations to the Pinellas Incised definition. Point Washington Incised includes sand tempered simple open bowls and jars with multiple broad-line incisions on the exterior near the rim. These usually consist of three or four parallel lines which incorporate loops and U-shaped pendant figures. Rim adornos and flat handles are common, often incorporating representations of anatomical features of birds. Bird head adornos are especially common. Loop handles and rim nodes sometimes occur.
In contrast, Pinellas Incised as used herein refers to simple open bowls, carinated bowls, short-collared jars, and (occasionally) casuela bowls with broad-line incision on the exterior. Multiple parallel lines sometimes occur below the rim, but do not incorporate loop elements. A single line of punctations may also be present parallel to the rim. On the vessel body, incised curvilinear elements are typical, sometimes
bordered by one or two lines of punctations, which are typically square. Adornos and flat handles are lacking on Pinellas Incised vessels in the Safety Harbor area, but loop handles are occasionally present.
It is interesting to note that Pinellas Incised, whether defined using Willey's criteria or those presented above, is very rare on Safety Harbor sites (Luer et al. n.d.). Specimens of Point Washington Incised (as defined above) are much more common. Readers should note that many 'of the sites and collections in Chapter 2 were analyzed by others, and their definitions of Pinellas and Point Washington Incised (as well as other ceramic types) may vary. Every attempt was made to check extant collections, but in some cases it was impossible.
Before proceeding to the presentation of data on
Safety Harbor sites, it is necessary to explain how the terminology of archaeological units is used in this study. The terms "component" and "occupation" have very similar meanings as used herein. However, there is an important distinction which should be pointed out. component is used in the sense defined by Willey and Phillips (1958:21), that there are Safety Harbor artifacts present at a site, but that these may have been obtained by exchange or some other means, so their
presence does not necessarily indicate that the makers of the artifacts lived at the site. In contrast, occupation is used to indicate that a Safety Harbor group (people who made and used the artifact types) actually inhabited or built the site. This distinction is especially important in discussing Safety Harbor evidence in south Florida, where distinguishing sites associated with different cultural groups is difficult. Randolph J. Widmer (1988:86) has noted that the presence of Safety Harbor artifacts does not necessarily indicate that the historically-known Tocobaga Indians occupied an area, as Ripley P. Bullen (1978b:50) believed.
PREVIOUS ARCHAEOLOGICAL RESEARCH ON SAFETY HARBOR
In order to redefine Safety Harbor, it is first
necessary to discuss previous work (both published and unpublished), so that the state of present knowledge and interpretation can be evaluated. Numerous site reports and papers dealing with various aspects of Safety Harbor culture have been published. There arealso many collections held by private individuals and in institutions which have never been thoroughly studied or described in print. However, any attempt at summary is doomed to be incomplete, due to inaccuracies in records, incomplete survey coverage, and other factors.
This chapter discusses known sites by county
(Figure 1), following a roughly north to south course. Sites that have been previously identified as having Safety Harbor components, but which do not, are also included. Collections from sites are generally not enumerated if they have been previously published. A section on sites outside of the Safety Harbor culture area that have yielded small quantities of Safety Harbor artifacts is also included.
P, A*I Ias
K IL OMET ERS
Map of Peninsular Florida Showing Pertinent Counties.
In describing collections, a standard format is
used for sherd counts when counts of rim and body sherds are available. This format consists of two numbers separated by a slash (/). The first number represents the total number of sherds, and the second refers to the number of these which are rim sherds.
Description of Sites
Dixie and Levy Counties
As will be discussed later, Dixie and Levy counties are outside of the actual Safety Harbor culture area.Examination of collections has revealed that there are no sites in these two counties that convincingly demonstrate the presence of a Safety Harbor component. However, there are some sites that have yielded small numbers of Safety Harbor and Englewood sherds. These are briefly described here.
In recent surveys of Dixie County, Kohler and
Johnson (1986:25-32) found possible Safety Harbor sherds at only three sites. At the Lolly Creek-Butler Island NE site (BDi50), a shell midden on a low island surrounded bY salt marsh, they identified one sherd as possible Englewood or Safety Harbor Incised (1986:25). However, since the other ceramics from the site consisted of Norwood, Deptford, and Swift Creek types,
the sherd in question is probably actually Crystal River Incised (Willey 1949a:389), a Swift Creek type which resembles Safety Harbor Incised.
At the Kenny Land site (8DilO3), they recovered one sherd of Pinellas Incised or Safety Harbor Incised. The other artifacts from the site clearly indicate that it is an Alachua Tradition midden (Kohler and Johnson 1986:25), so the single sherd is probably a result of exchange.
A third site mentioned by Kohler and Johnson
(1986:26) remains unrecorded, but local collectors found Weeden Island, Alachua Tradition, possible Fort Walton, and Safety Harbor pottery types on the surface. They illustrated five sherds (1986:Figures 3 and 4) which appear to be Safety Harbor types (Safety Harbor or Pinellas Incised and Point Washington Incised), but the failure to relocate the site and to obtain better samples precludes assigning a cultural affiliation to the site.
In the collections of the South Florida Museum
(SFM) in Bradenton there is an engraved bottle (#2328), reportedly from Dixie County, with red ochre rubbed into the engraved designs. A Safety Harbor Incised bottle from the Tierra Verde site (8Pi5l) in Pinellas County had ochre rubbed into the incisions (Sears 1967:46). However, red pigmented engraved (rather than incised)
vessels are more common from sites to the north, such as Moundville, Alabama, where such vessels tend to be found in Moundville I Phase contexts dating to about A.D. 1050 to 1250 (Steponaitis 1983:80, 100). The Dixie County vessel is probably a trade item from cultures to the north.
In Levy County, artifacts were collected from
Palmetto Island (8Lv7) in the 1880s by Decatur Pittman, who later donated the material to the Florida Museum of Natural History (FMNH). The site is primarily Weeden Island-related, but one Pinellas Incised sherd was listed by Willey (1949a:311). This could not be located in the FMNH collections. Willey (1949a:312) also listed two Prairie Cord Marked and two fabric impressed sherds in the collection, which suggest an Alachua Tradition component (Milanich 1971).
Willey (1949a:313) mentioned that three Pinellas Plain sherds were surface collected at the Hodgeson's Hill site (8Lv8) in 1949, and he postulated a possible Safety Harbor occupation on the basis of this. Pinellas Plain pottery has since been shown to occur in some Weeden Island-related contexts, however, which is consistent with the collection from the site (Luer and Almy 1980:211).
A single sherd of Safety Harbor Incised and one of Sarasota Incised were noted by Willey (1949a:313) from
the predominantly Weeden Island-related site of Piney Point on Cedar Key (8Lv9). A note in the FMNH site files also indicates that at least one Englewood Incised sherd was present in a private collection from the site.
A collection in FMNH (#95817) from the Coulter site on Piney Point contains two sherds of Safety Harbor Incised (Ripley Bullen identified these as Fort Walton Incised) and one Englewood Incised sherd. There are two possible Pinellas Plain or Lake Jackson Plain sherds, and many sand tempered plain, Pasco Plain, and St. Johns Plain sherds. The collection also includes cord marked, simple stamped, and grit tempered check stamped sherds, which may indicate a Deptford component (Milanich 1973). Weeden Island types are present as well. It is unclear whether 8Lv9 and the Coulter site are the same. Notes with the Coulter collection indicate that the sherds were collected from the beach below the high tide level.
The site number 8Lv21 was assigned for materials from various sites on Cedar Keys. According to Willey (1949a:315), a small collection in the National Museum of Natural History (NMNH) (#42481-42486) with this designation includes Weeden Island and Safety Harbor ceramic types.
A note in the FMNH site files mentions that one sherd of Pinellas Incised and four sherds of Pinellas Plain were included in collections from Manatee Springs
(8Lv32). A search of the FMNH collections failed to locate these artifacts (#72920-72927), however.
Another FMNH collection (#A-11014) was gathered from the Seahorse Key site (8Lv64) by G. L. Streib. This small collection contains five sherds from two vessels which have interlocking scroll designs incised on the exterior. These are similar to what Willey (1949a:482-485, Figure 66c) called Pinellas Incised. Pasco Plain and St. Johns Check Stamped sherds make up the rest of the assemblage.
Derrick Key (8Lv122), a multicomponent shell
midden, apparently yielded some Pinellas Incised sherds from beach erosion. The majority of the material from the site was from earlier periods.
Willey (1949a:315) mentioned a small collection in NMNH (#42481-42486) from an unidentified mound on Cedar Key. He described the pottery as mixed Weeden Island and Safety Harbor types, but no specific details were provided.
Catalog cards from the Cedar Key High School site in FMNH (#97876) list a single Englewood Incised sherd, but a check of the collection failed to turn up this specimen. The site appears to be a single component Weeden Island-related occupation.
As the above discussion indicates, no Levy or Dixie County sites appear to have definite Safety Harbor
components. The Safety Harbor and Englewood pottery sherds (some of which may actually be Fort Walton types) probably resulted from exchange or other interaction with Safety Harbor groups to the south.
Citrus County is the northernmost county where
sites with definite Safety Harbor components have been identified. The Withlacoochee River, which forms the northern and eastern borders of the county, was probably a sociopolitical boundary during the protohistoric period, and possibly earlier (Mitchem 1988a, 1989).
The Crystal River site (8Cil) is a famous
multimound site located on the north side of Crystal River near its mouth. Clarence B. Moore (1903, 1907a, 1918) excavated in some of the mounds, and much has been written about various interpretations of the artifacts from Moore's work and later excavations (A. Bullen 1972:160; R. Bullen 1951a, 1953; Greenman 1938; Hardman 1971; Smith 1951; Weisman 1987; Willey 1948a, 1949a:316-323, 1949b; Willey and Phillips 1944).
In 1960 and 1964, Ripley Bullen (1965:10, n.d.)
excavated portions of a small burial mound at the site which yielded 35 flexed burials. He believed that these burials dated to Safety Harbor times, but an examination of the FMNH collections from these excavations
(#98959-98970) indicates that there is little artifactual evidence to support this interpretation.
There are sherds of Safety Harbor pottery types
from Crystal River, but they are few in number. Bullen (1953:11, Figure 3) discussed and illustrated Point Washington or Pinellas Incised sherds from the east end of the shell midden extending east from Mound A (this area is now under a trailer park). He noted that the site did not appear to have been intensively occupied during Safety Harbor times, and suggested that the site served as some sort of ceremonial center during that period (1953:32). Willey (1949b:43) believed that the two truncated rectangular mounds at the site could represent Safety Harbor constructions, but no stratigraphic or artifactual data have been produced to substantiate this.
The majority of the work at Crystal River has demonstrated pre-Safety Harbor occupation (Bullen 1965:10; Willey 1949a:316-323). There does appear to be a Safety Harbor component, but the intensity of this occupation cannot be determined on the basis of previous work at the site.
The Buzzard's Island site (8Ci2) is located on an island in the Crystal River. The site apparently consists of a cemetery (not a mound), from which Rainey (1935) excavated an undisclosed number of secondary
burials and a few flexed and extended individuals. He also noted evidence of cremation.
The artifacts from the site are of interest because they reflect primarily Safety Harbor affiliations, but also an Alachua Tradition connection. Rainey (1935) illustrated several sherds and an almost complete vessel. The sherds clearly indicate a Safety Harbor occupation, consisting of St. Johns Check Stamped, Lake Jackson Plain with a fluted rim, and Point Washington Incised types (Willey [1949a:323-324] identified the latter as Pinellas Incised). There was also a vessel that Willey (1949a:324) identified as cob marked. This bowl would be classified as Alachua Cob Marked, a ceramic type associated with the later portion (ca. A.D. 1400) of the Alachua Tradition (Milanich 1971:28, 32).
Rainey (1935) also illustrated a ground stone celt, Pinellas points, large stemmed points, a ceramic pipe fragment, and a quartz plummet. Willey (1949a:323) added that Rainey's collection at Yale included chipped celts, long ground stone celts, St. Johns Plain pottery, and stone pendants. Notes from the Yale Peabody Museum (YPM) (#22767-22781) in the FMNH site files indicate that at least four Pinellas Plain and nine Pinellas Incised or Point Washington Incised sherds were also in Rainey's collection.
There is a small collection of sherds from the site in FMNH (#94677) donated by L. W. Harrell in 1958. It includes 26/5 Pasco Plain, 10/3 sand tempered plain, 1/0 St. Johns Check Stamped, 1/0 sand tempered check stamped, and 1/1 sand tempered plain with a notched lip. It should be noted that the latter is not Pinellas Plain. The types present in this collection do nothing to alter the Safety Harbor interpretation of the site.
Moore (1903:413-414) excavated a burial mound
(8Ci3) near the Chassahowitzka River, which may have been a Safety Harbor mound. Unfortunately, the verbal description of the pottery encountered is too vague to determine actual types, but it is safe to assume the site was Weeden Island or Safety Harbor in age, possibly both. Moore (1903:Figure 73) illustrated a rim sherd with an effigy lug which could be classified as Lake Jackson Plain.
A very large multicomponent habitation site (8Ci5) is located on a peninsula known as Duval Island in Lake Tsala Apopka. This site was mentioned by Willey (1949a:324), who suggested a Deptford date for it. Three collections (#85525-85527, 85977, and 92502) from the site were donated to FMNH by Edward P. St. John of Floral City. These collections are listed in Table 1.
More recent collections from the site have included large numbers of St. Johns Check Stamped sherds, whole
Table 1. Artifacts from Duval Island (8Ci5) in FMNH. Description Count
Pasco Plain 33/8
Pasco Check Stamped 11/5
Pasco Plain with scratched surface 1/0
Prairie Cord Marked (some with Pasco paste) 27/8
St. Johns Plain 14/1
St. Johns Check Stamped 12/2
Dunns Creek Red 5/3
Sand tempered plain 5/0
Sand tempered plain tetrapod base 1/0
Perico Incised 1/1
Safety Harbor Incised 1/0
Ovate chert biface 1
Iron axe head 1
Busycon contrarium shells, shell celts, and Pinellas projectile points (Mitchem and Weisman 1987:156-158). While test excavations have not been conducted, it should be noted that the presence of a protohistoric component (including Safety Harbor ceramics) and the site size (ca. 8 ha) strongly indicate a large Safety Harbor settlement, possibly the town of Tocaste
mentioned in the accounts of the Hernando de Soto expedition, which passed through this portion of Florida three times in 1539 (Fernandez de Oviedo y Valdds 1973:65; Smith 1968:37; Swanton 1985:142).
A collection in FMNH (#77919-77933) from a site on the shore of Lake Tsala Apopka (8Ci7) includes 3/2 Sarasota Incised and 1/1 Point Washington Incised sherds, along with St. Johns types, Pasco types, and Prairie Cord Marked. Deptford and Perico wares indicate the site is multicomponent. Unfortunately, the records do not indicate whether this was a mound or a midden.
S. T. Walker excavated approximately 150 European glass beads from a mound (8Ci16) somewhere on Chassahowitzka Bay (Willey 1949a:324). A note in the FMNH site file describes these (NMNH #59376) as large blue and large white seed beads, with cut tubular beads of green, blue, opal, lavender, and colorless glass. A large (1.2 cm diameter) dark blue bead and four brown tubular or ovoid beads are also included. The verbal description, though inadequate, seems to indicate that these are probably seventeenth century types. No other artifacts were mentioned from the site. It may have been a postcontact Safety Harbor mound.
Three shell middens, Crystal River #3 (8Ci37), Jake's Drop (8Ci38), and Shell Island (8Ci43), are listed in the FMSF as having Safety Harbor components.
A check of the FMNH collections from these sites (#96065 and 99318; 96067; and 94676, 96071, and 99319, respectively) yielded no definite evidence of Safety Harbor occupation, however.
The Wash Island site (8Ci42) is also listed as
having a Safety Harbor component. This site was surface collected and excavated by Bullen and Bullen (1961, 1963). Their collections indicated a primarily Deptford occupation, but the presence of Pinellas Plain sherds, including one rim with a notched lip (the later form of this type) suggests a minor Safety Harbor component as well (Bullen and Bullen 1963:84).
The Gard site (8Ci5l), a burial mound on Rendevous (sic) Island in the Homosassa River, was excavated by Bullen (1951b). At least 11 burials were found, all secondary interments (1951b:28). Few artifacts were recovered, but the pottery included St. Johns Plain and Check Stamped, Prairie Cord Marked, and a Lake Jackson Plain rim with a loop handle. A greenstone celt, two bifacial chipped tools, and a Busycon shell bead were also recovered. Bullen (1951b:31) thought that the mound was Safety Harbor in date, with a possible late Weeden Island-related component. This seems reasonable based on the few artifacts available.
The Pumpkin Creek site (8Ci57), a small midden on the Chassahowitzka River, was originally recorded as
Hd-7 (Hernando County) by Florida Park Service (FPS) archaeologists. The FMNH site file lists this as a possible Safety Harbor site, but the meager FMNH collection (#99364) contains no diagnostic sherds to support the contention.
Burtine Island D (8Ci6l), a shell midden near the mouth of the Withlacoochee River, was excavated by Bullen (1966). Pottery types indicated occupation from Deptford through Safety Harbor times, the latter being represented by a few Sarasota Incised and Pinellas Plain sherds. The relatively small number of Safety Harbor artifacts suggests only a light occupation of the site by Safety Harbor peoples (Bullen 1966:16). A small number of Alachua Tradition types were also recovered, evidence of interaction with groups north of the Withlacoochee.
According to notes on the FMSF form, a marine shell and dirt midden on the Homosassa River, the Tiger Tail Bay Midden (8Cil36), yielded the artifacts listed in Table 2. The site appears to be a mixed Weeden Islandrelated and Safety Harbor midden.
An extremely large flat-topped shell mound, known as the Withlacoochee River Platform Mound (8Ci189), is located on the bank of the Withlacoochee. The site has never been excavated, but its configuration is reminiscent of truncated "temple mounds" associated with
Table 2. Artifacts from Tiger Tail Bay Midden (8Ci136). Description Count
Pasco Plain 12
Weeden Island Plain 12
Sand tempered plain 9
Pinellas Plain 1
Safety Harbor Incised 1
St. Johns Check Stamped 1
Lake Jackson Plain 1
Chert flakes 2
Faunal remains count unrecorded
many Safety Harbor sites in the Tampa Bay area (Luer and Almy 1981). No artifactual information is available, but the site could be a possible Safety Harbor mound.
An extensive multicomponent shell midden on the Withlacoochee River, the Bayonet Field site (8Ci197), was partially excavated in 1985 (Mitchem, Weisman et al. 1985:44-47). Analysis has revealed that a Safety Harbor component is present at the site, as indicated by Safety Harbor Incised sherds. Abundant Prairie Cord Marked sherds were also recovered from the midden, indicating interaction with Alachua Tradition groups across the river. Three radiocarbon samples (charcoal) from two
probable hearths (Features #7 and 13) yielded dates of 1000 60 B.P. (Beta-12679) and 630 50 B.P. (Beta12680) from Feature #7, and 1050 90 B.P. (Beta-12681) from Feature #13 (Mitchem 1985b). When these dates are calibrated using the computer programs CALIB and DISPLAY (Stuiver and Reimer 1986), they yield calibrated date ranges of Cal. AD 984-1150; Cal. AD 1282-1393; and Cal. AD 891-1146, respectively. Artifacts in this part of the midden consisted of mixed Weeden Island and Safety Harbor types. The midden may represent one of the habitation sites occupied by people buried in the Tatham Mound (8Ci203).
A multicomponent artifact scatter known as the Wild Hog Scrub site (8Ci198) is located a few hundred meters from the Tatham Mound, and probably contains some artifacts associated with the builders of the mound (Weisman 1986:12-15, 1989:142; Weisman and Marquardt 1988), though the Safety Harbor component appears to be minor. The site was probably used on a short-term basis during Safety Harbor times.
The Alligator Ford site (8Ci199) is located in the Cove of the Withlacoochee, a wetland area of eastern Citrus County. Weisman (1986:12) excavated two units at this site, which appeared to be a habitation site occupied from Weeden Island through Seminole times. Safety Harbor occupation was suggested by a possible
Pinellas Incised sherd and a Savannah Fine Cord Marked sherd. The site may have been occupied by some of the people buried at the nearby Tatham mound (8Ci203), but further testing of the site is necessary to determine this.
The Ruth Smith Mound (8Ci200) is also located in the Cove of the Withlacoochee area. This site was vandalized for many years, culminating in its destruction by bulldozer early in the 1970s (Mitchem and Weisman 1984:100). Test excavations of the site in 1984 revealed that no portions of the mound were intact (Mitchem and Weisman 1984).
A number of collectors with material from the site were contacted and loaned artifacts to FMNH for study. They reported that many burials were excavated from the mound, but no records on numbers or positions were kept. Decorated pottery types from the site included Safety Harbor Incised, Pinellas Incised, Point Washington Incised, and St. Johns Check Stamped, clearly indicating a Safety Harbor occupation (Mitchem, Smith et al. 1985:198). Alachua Tradition types were also present in small numbers.
The most significant artifacts from the site are Spanish objects dating to the first half of the sixteenth century. These include 30 glass beads, 51 silver beads, two gold beads, an iron chisel, a rolled
iron bead, brass rings (possibly representing chain mail), and a sherd of Green Bacin pottery (Mitchem, Smith et al. 1985:202). The glass beads included Nueva Cadiz and faceted chevron varieties, indicating an early sixteenth century date (Deagan 1987; Smith and Good 1982). Two additional glass beads, one Nueva Cadiz Plain and one faceted chevron, were recently collected from the surface of the site and donated to the FMNH (Walter H. Askew, personal communication 1988). The location of the site and the assemblage of Spanish artifacts suggest that the people buried in the mound made contact with one or both of the expeditions of Pdnfilo de Narvdez in 1528 and Hernando de Soto in 1539.
A few kilometers away is the Tatham mound (8Ci203), excavated by FMNH archaeologists in 1985 and 1986 (Mitchem and Hutchinson 1986, 1987). This protohistoric site is discussed in detail in Chapter 3.
An artifact scatter known as the Weaver site
(8Ci213) yielded St. Johns Check Stamped and Prairie Cord Marked sherds, as well as Pinellas projectile points. While the evidence is scant, these artifact types suggest a Safety Harbor designation for the site.
Weisman (1989:116) stated that the Zellner Grove site (8Ci215) had a possible Safety Harbor component represented by a light scatter of artifacts. As he
noted, this was probably related to the larger Duval Island site (8Ci5), which is located nearby.
A collection from an unnumbered site known as the "shell midden half way down the Chassahowitzka River on the right" is in FMNH (#104968). The artifacts in this collection are listed in Table 3. A note with the collection indicates that many Pinellas projectile points were found on the site, to the virtual exclusion of other point types. The collection seems to indicate a multicomponent site, with Safety Harbor occupation possibly represented by the Pinellas points.
Several unrecorded middens are located on the north bank of the Homosassa River. Pinellas projectile points and Safety Harbor Incised pottery have been collected from eroding beaches adjacent to these middens (Walter H. Askew, personal communication 1988).
Lake County, located east of Sumter County, is
outside of the Safety Harbor culture area. A few sites, however, have yielded evidence which may indicate interaction with Safety Harbor groups.
In the late nineteenth century, C. B. Moore
(1896:536-539) excavated a previously disturbed mound west of the town of Tavares (8La52). The sand mound yielded many secondary burials, shell beads, galena,
Table 3. Artifacts from an Unrecorded Shell Midden
on the Chassahowitzka River.
St. Johns Check Stamped 9/2
Sand tempered plain 4/3
Deptford Cross Simple Stamped 1/0
Complicated stamped (faint concentric circle-Jefferson Ware?) 1/0
Pinellas projectile points 5
Chert biface fragment 1
Polished bone pin fragment 1
plain and red painted pottery, stone celts, projectile points, and pendants of stone and shell (1896:536-538). One illustrated sherd (1896:Plate LXXXVI) is typical Weeden Island Incised. He also made brief mention of a smaller sand mound (8La53) nearby, which purportedly had yielded objects of brass or bronze in the past. Though Moore did not dig in the smaller mound, he noted the presence of glass beads on its surface (1896:539).
The sites, consisting of the two mounds and a
habitation area, were rediscovered by Sleight (1949), who excavated in the smaller mound (8La53) and screened
previous workers' backdirt. His work yielded 366 glass beads, a teardrop-shaped glass pendant, and three pottery vessels.
The glass beads were primarily seed beads, of a
wide variety of colors. A tubular blue bead with red, white, blue, and green longitudinal stripes was also recovered. The pendant (2.5 cm x 1.3 cm) was of light blue glass (Sleight 1949:27-28), and had a perforation made by looping the molten glass. He noted the similarity of this assemblage to that from the Goodnow mound (8Hg6) in Highlands County (Griffin and Smith 1948).
The three vessels from the mound were of the types St. Johns Plain, St. Johns Check Stamped, and Sarasota Incised (Sleight 1949:28-30). The Sarasota Incised vessel suggests either a very early Safety Harbor component for the site or interaction with Safety Harbor groups during this time period. However, since the site is located on the edge of the St. Johns culture area, the vessel could merely be a St. Johns paste vessel with designs that coincidentally match those used to define the type Sarasota Incised (Willey 1 949a:474). The glass beads indicate a much later occupation, but the cultural affiliations of the postcontact component are not evident from the available data.
The Mound near Old Okahumpka (8La57) was also excavated by Moore (1896:542-543). This sand mound yielded many burials, all of which were apparently secondary (bundles). Eight stone celts, shell beads, plain and red-painted sherds, and three copper objects came from the mound.
One of the copper objects was a plate fragment with a repousse design embossed on it (Goggin 1949d). The design consisted of the lower portion (the top had been broken away) of a human figure in profile. The method of depiction of this individual is clearly reminiscent of motifs associated with the Southeastern Ceremonial Complex (Hamilton et al. 1974:153-161; Waring and Holder 1968). Such motifs are common on Mississippian period (ca. A.D. 1200-1450) ceremonial objects (Knight 1986), and the copper plate from Old Okahumpka dates the mound to this period. Copper and pottery objects with Southeastern Ceremonial Complex motifs have been found at the Tatham Mound in Citrus County (Mitchem and Hutchinson 1987; see also Chapter 3, this volume).
Moore (1896:Figure 91) illustrated a sherd from the site which bears a striking resemblance to a sherd from the Briarwoods site (8Pa66), a Safety Harbor burial mound in Pasco County (Mitchem 1985a, 1988b). The artifactual evidence suggests that the site was probably occupied by people who interacted with Safety Harbor
groups, though collections from the site are too scant to allow determination of whether or not the mound should be considered a Safety Harbor site. *
Another site (8La62) in Lake County, known as the West Apopka site (or Burial Mound on the West Shore of Lake Apopka), was described by Kunz (1887:222). His discussion focused on description of two metal objects (American Museum of Natural History [AMNH] #1/4662) from the site, one of cast gold (Goggin 1954b:Figure la) and one of silver (Kunz 1887:Figures 4 and 5). He also mentioned that the mound contained a stone celt and a large number of decomposed bones representing hundreds of individuals. No information on pottery types or other artifacts was included. The FMNH site file designates this as a Safety Harbor site, but presently available data do not allow confirmation of this interpretation.
A note in the FMNH site file (apparently written by John Goggin) indicates that the East Shore of Lake Butler site (80r11) was a Safety Harbor mound. However, the only artifacts rec6rded from the site are two artifacts of European metal, one of silver and one of gold (Kunz 1887:221-223, Figures 2 and 6). There is no
evidence to indicate that the site was a Safety Harbor mound.
A site known as the Mound West of Lake Butler
(80r12), or the Gotha Mound, was excavated in the late nineteenth century by Adolph Meinecke, a trustee of the Milwaukee Public Museum (MPM). Material attributed to this site came from at least two mounds in the area (Board of Trustees of the Public Museum of the City of Milwaukee 1892:15, 1893:12-13). One of these mounds may also have been dug in 1896 by Thomas Featherstonhaugh (1897, 1899). One of them may have been 80r1l.
John Goggin studied the MPM collection in 1945, and obtained many of the European artifacts from there in 1961. Goggin's notes on the collection were probably used by Smith (1956:52) to write his brief discussion of the site, which he incorrectly referred to as 80r1l. Goggin's (1945) notes indicated that Weeden Island Punctated, Wakulla Check Stamped, Englewood Incised, "Englewood Punctated," Safety Harbor Incised, Fort Walton Incised, and St. Johns pottery types were in the collection. An intact Seminole vessel was also present (Goggin 1953b:Figures la and 7a).
The European artifacts, most of which are now in FMNH (#A-20117), consist of a wide variety of glass beads and metal objects. Several of the metal items listed in the notes in the site file have disappeared,
including a tanged iron knife blade, a perforated iron celt, and an iron chisel. The FMNH collection from the site is listed in Table 4.
The European artifacts from 80r12 provide some
evidence for the date of contact. The glass beads are most useful for this purpose. The Nueva Cadiz bead and the oblate transparent purple specimens are early sixteenth century varieties (Smith and Good 1982), but most of the collection is later, suggesting that the early beads were curated items. The opaque turquoise blue (Ichtucknee Blue), aquamarine, medium blue, heataltered compound, and Cornaline d'Aleppo beads probably all date to the late sixteenth or seventeenth centuries (Deagan 1987:Table 4, 168, 171, 175; Smith 1983:150, 1987:46). The Gooseberry beads are spheroid, which indicates a probable eighteenth century date (Deagan 1987:168; Smith 1983:150).
The rolled sheet silver bead is a 4.15 cm long tube weighing 5.9 g. Beads of this type have been recovered from many sixteenth and seventeenth century contact period aboriginal sites in Florida (Mitchem and Leader 1988:54). The brass disc, originally about 11 cm in diameter, is of a type found on sites in the interior Southeast dating from the late sixteenth century or later (Smith 1987:37-38). The two iron "awls" measure 20.3 cm and 20.6 cm in length, are square in cross
Table 4. Artifacts from 8Or12 in FMNH.
Opaque white seed 98
Transparent light blue-green seed 71
Transparent medium blue seed 19
Opaque turquoise blue seed 10
Transparent light purple seed 2
Cornaline d'Aleppo seed 2
Spheroid translucent dark purple seed 1
Large Nueva Cadiz Plain, faceted (transparent
medium aquamarine blue/thin white/transparent
medium blue core) 1
Drawn opaque turquoise blue (Ichtucknee Blue) 27
Drawn oblate or barrel-shaped transparent
aquamarine blue 21
Drawn barrel-shaped transparent medium blue 6
Colorless Gooseberry (I is oblate, other is double) 2 Drawn barrel-shaped opaque white 4
Heat-altered compound spherical (translucent
turquoise blue/possible thin white/transparent
medium aquamarine blue core) 5
Drawn barrel-shaped transparent medium green 4
oblate transparent purple (IBig) 2
Drawn barrel-shaped translucent dark burgundy 2
Oblate Cornaline d'Aleppo 1
Small olive-shaped medium transparent purple with
marvered facets 1
Oblate translucent yellow 1
Barrel-shaped transparent medium aquamarine blue
with 4 longitudinal red-on-white stripes 1
Barrel-shaped transparent light blue with 9
longitudinal opaque white stripes 1
Drawn barrel-shaped transparent cobalt blue 2
Spheroid medium transparent blue with 4 longitudinal
opaque white stripes 3
Small oblate transparent medium blue with 4
longitudinal opaque white stripes 1
Large drawn translucent dark brown with 3
longitudinal opaque white stripes 1
Drawn olive-shaped opaque dark burgundy with 1
longitudinal thin white stripe 1
Blue metallic-finish faceted spherical (5 rows of
facets, mold-made, probably modern) 1
Rolled sheet silver bead 1
Broken circular brass disc 1
Miscellaneous flat brass fragments 2
Iron "awls" 2
Iron scissors fragments (from a single pair) 2
Unidentified iron fragment 1
Polished stone bead (probably hematite) 1
Barrel-shaped beads 2
Disc beads stained with red ochre 3
Small disc beads 3
*Designation in the Smith and Good (1982) typology.
section, have tapered ends, and are 0.7 cm thick at the widest point. The identification of these items as awls is speculative. similar iron awls have been recovered in seventeenth century Onondaga contexts in New York (Bradley 1987:141-142, 202) and in eighteenth century contexts at Fort Michilimackinac in Michigan (Stone 1974:155-159). But specimens from these areas are much smaller than those from 80r12, and are probably of Dutch or French origin rather than Spanish (Bradley 1987:142). Dan and Phyllis Morse (1986) have suggested that these objects were raw material for blacksmiths accompanying the early Spanish expeditions. Present evidence.is insufficient to determine their function.
Because of the location of the site outside of the apparent Safety Harbor culture area, a visit was made to
MPH in August, 1988, to study and photograph the aboriginal artifacts from the mound. This study indicated that the aboriginal ceramics from the mound are clearly Weeden Island types. The decorated sherds of Safety Harbor and Englewood types mentioned by Goggin (1945) were misidentified. Furthermore, many of the stone artifacts in the MPH collection (primarily projectile points and ground stone objects) are not from Florida. Specifically, many of the projectile points appear to be quartzite points typical of the Georgia Piedmont, and the presence of several grooved stone axes (typical of northeastern North America) strongly suggests that the collection wag mixed with material from many sites.
The collector, Adolph Meinecke, owned a winter home near Lake Butler. During visits there, he and some associates would excavate in at least two mounds (possibly more) in the vicinity, subsequently donating the material to MPH (Board of Trustees of the Public Museum of the City of Milwaukee 1892:15, 41-42, 1893:1213, 44-45, 1894:13, 70, 1896:13, 34). The artifacts in FMNH and MPH were excavated from these mounds, but artifacts from other states were mixed in with the collection at some point. The European artifacts indicate that the major period of contact was probably during the late sixteenth or seventeenth centuries, but
there is no evidence to support a Safety Harbor component at the mound.
The Bayport mound (BHel) was excavated by Moore
(1903:415-424). This oblong burial mound yielded about 40 burials, most of which were secondary interments, along with a few cremations (Willey 1949a:325-326). Though most of the pottery consists of Weeden Island types, Moore illustrated what appears to be a sherd of Englewood Incised (1903:Figure 66), and a Safety Harbor Incised bottle form (1903:Figure 71). A cast of the bottle is in FMNH (#A-3068). These latter types suggest a minor Safety Harbor component at the site.
Moore also excavated a mound known as Indian Bend
(8He2), from which he recovered check stamped sherds and at least one sherd from a St. Petersburg Incised bottle (1903:Figure 65). Willey (1949a:442) noted that St. Petersburg Incised is primarily a late Weeden Island type, but probably also occurs in Englewood contexts. Therefore, it is possible that this site had an early Safety Harbor component.
The multicomponent Johns Island site (8He4), first mentioned by Heilprin (1887:4), was tested by Antonio Waring in 1948 (Willey 1949a:327-328), who found mostly Weeden Island pottery types. Bullen and Bullen (1950)
also worked at the site, recovering a small number of Pinellas Plain sherds in the top stratum of the midden, along with shell tempered wares (1950:44). These types, in addition to Pinellas points surface-collected nearby, would suggest a possible minor Safety Harbor occupation of the site, though these could also represent a Weeden Island-related component. A collection in FMNH (#30350) also includes a Spanish Olive Jar sherd, indicating some habitation or contact after the early sixteenth century. A collection in the NMNH (#59368), apparently collected by S. T. Walker (Goggin thought it was from the Johns Island site), also includes one sherd identified as European by John Goggin.
The Bayport II site (8He7) is apparently a
habitation site about 1.6 km south of 8Hel. Notes in the FMNH site file indicate that a surface collection at the site produced 73 sherds, supposedly all Safety Harbor types. Only two decorated sherds were noted, both of which were Pinellas Incised. The collection is housed in the Temple Mound Museum (TMM) in Fort Walton Beach.
A collection in FMNH (#98449) was obtained in 1963 from the Palm Grove Gardens site (8He8). The artifacts are listed in Table 5. The Pinellas Plain pottery
Table 5. Artifacts from the Palm Grove Gardens Site (8He8) in FMNH.
Pasco Plain 46/6
Pasco Check Stamped 3/2
Pasco Cord Marked 1/1
Sand tempered plain 39/6
Pinellas Plain 10/0
St. Johns Check Stamped 6/2
St. Johns Plain 4/1
Utilized chert flake 1
suggests a Safety Harbor component, though this could represent a late Weeden Island-related occupation.
A multicomponent site (8HelO) known as the First
Gardens or Weekiwachee site (not to be confused with the Weeki Wachee Mound (8He12] discussed below) was collected by Ferguson (1976). This midden, which had been vandalized, yielded material indicating continuous occupation from Deptford through Seminole times. The probable Safety Harbor component was represented by Pinellas Plain sherds, Pinellas projectile points, and a Tampa projectile point. Ferguson (1976:Figure 1) also recovered an incised sherd, which he identified as
Ocmulgee Fields Incised, but is Point Washington Incised. Fifty Olive Jar sherds were also collected,but these may have been associated with the Seminole component (1976:76).
The Weeki Wachee Mound (SHe12) was excavated in
1970 by Robert Allen. Located near the springs of the same name, the mound yielded 63 burials, many of which consisted of more than one individual. Pottery from the mound included typical Safety Harbor types with some Alachua Tradition types present (Mitchem, Smith et al. 1985:185). Shell artifacts were numerous, including Busycon cups, unaltered whelk shells, beads, and freshwater mussel shells (as necklaces). The mussel shells are of interest because they were identified as Shepard's Filter Clam (Elliptio shepardianus Lea), a species that occurs only in the Altamaha River drainage of Georgia. Shells of this species were also recovered at the Tatham mound in Citrus County (Mitchem and Hutchinson 1986:17-18, 1987:23).
In addition, the excavations yielded between 123
and 127 glass beads, 151 silver beads, and one spherical true amber bead. The glass beads consisted of many varieties of Nueva Cadiz, faceted chevron, and striped beads, all of which are early sixteenth century types (Deagan 1987; Smith and Good 1982). The European bead
assemblage is remarkably similar to those recovered from the Ruth Smith and Tatham mounds in Citrus County (Mitchem and Hutchinson 1986:27-34, 1987:48-55; Mitchem, Smith et al. 1985:204-205). The Weeki Wachee Mound was apparently an isolated burial mound, with no associated habitation area. This appears to be a typical pattern in the region north of Tampa Bay (Mitchem 1988d).
A site known as Anderson's Mound (8Hel4) was
destroyed by treasure hunters. Excavations prior to destruction yielded a beaker-shaped vessel with vertical bands of parallel incised lines in a zigzag pattern (probably a variant of Englewood Incised), a stone plummet, and a ground stone celt fragment (William G. Dayton, personal communication 1986). The FMNH site file also records that a sherd of Englewood Incised and a blue glass bead were recovered after the mound's destruction. This bead was a heat-altered opaque turquoise blue specimen (Ichtucknee Blue). These first show up in sites in the Southeast around 1560 or 1570, but are occasionally found on sites dating as late as the eighteenth century (Deagan 1987:171; Goggin 1953a; Smith 1983:150, 1987:33). Local informants claim that many similar beads were recovered from the mound. The scant evidence from the site suggests that it was a
Safety Harbor burial mound, used well into the postcontact period.
In the files of the FPS (housed in FMNH), a letter written by Harry L. Schoff (dated December 12, 1935) includes a basic description of artifacts recovered from a mound near Istachatta in northeast Hernando County. The small sand mound yielded 14 pecked and ground stone celts, projectile points, and "a few silver, stone and shell beads" (Schoff 1935). Because of the location of the mound and the presence of silver beads, the site probably had a postcontact Safety Harbor component.
In the SFM collection in Bradenton, an iron celt (#35-11, 2120) is identified as having been found in Hernando County, probably by Montague Tallant. The celt is 24.2 cm long, 6.0-7.5 cm wide, and 0.7-1.0 cm thick. Similar iron artifacts have come from sixteenth century Spanish sites elsewhere in the Southeast (Smith 1975; 1987:34-36, 45-46). It is assumed the celt was recovered from a postcontact Safety Harbor site. There is also a large scalloped-rim Safety Harbor Incised bowl in SFM (#2324), which was found somewhere in Hernando County. It should be noted, however, that the boundaries of many Florida counties have changed over the years.
Large numbers of Pinellas projectile points have been collected from a site on the Chassahowitzka River by collectors who screened material eroding into the water (J. Raymond Williams, personal communication 1988). The site is apparently unrecorded, and no other information is available. The Pinellas points could indicate either a Weeden Island-related or Safety Harbor component. It is possible that this could be the same site mentioned in the Citrus County discussion above (Table 3).
S. T. Walker (1880a:392-394) and C. B. Moore
(1903:426-433) both excavated at the Pithlochascootie River site (8Pa2). This site was described by Walker (1880a:392) as consisting of two mounds about 90 m apart. One of these was a flat-topped mound of alternating shell and sand strata, and the other was an oval-shaped sand mound with a small projecting ridge. Walker recovered no artifacts from the first mound, but encountered numerous primary and secondary burials in the sand mound (1880a:394). An iron spike, a projectile point, and decorated sherds were also recovered during Walker's work.
Moore excavated flexed, extended, and secondary burials from the sand mound, representing a total of probably 150 individuals. (Willey 1949a:329). Evidence of cremation was also found. Many artifacts of stone, bone, and shell were recovered (Moore 1903:426-433; Willey 1949a:329).
Pottery from both Walker's and Moore's excavations consisted mostly of Weeden Island types, but Moore (1903:Figure 83) illustrated a vessel which appeared to be Sarasota Incised. Willey's (1949a:330) analysis of Walker's collection included a sherd of St. Petersburg Incised. These suggest a minor early Safety Harbor component at the site. If there is indeed a Safety Harbor component at the site, it represents the northernmost occurrence of the Mississippian-style Safety Harbor village site consisting of truncated mound, plaza, and burial mound, as described by Bullen (1955:60-61, 1978b:51).
Several low burial mounds (8Pa9) were destroyed
while clearing land for an orange grove near Dade City in 1946. FPS files indicate that numerous Busycon shell fragments were present, as well as human bones from burials. Two small collections in FMNH (#99658 and 104902) contain chert flakes, St. Johns Check Stamped, and Pasco Plain sherds, along with a partially
reconstructed sand tempered vessel with a brushed exterior. Though the latter vessel suggests Seminole occupation (many Seminole sites are known in the area), the reset of the pottery types are not inconsistent with a Safety Harbor date. The presence nearby of a large Safety Harbor habitation site (the Pottery Hill site) increases the probability that the mounds were Safety Harbor burial mounds.
At the multicomponent Grace Memorial Gardens site (8Pa2l), excavations by amateur archaeologists revealed Archaic, Weeden Island-related, and Safety Harbor occupations. The Safety Harbor component was indicated by sherds of Pinellas Plain pottery with notched lips (Wells and Bull 1978:23).
Members of the Suncoast Archaeological Society reported an artifact scatter (8Pa37) in 1978 which yielded aboriginal ceramics, lithic artifacts, and faunal remains. On the FMSF form, the site was dated to late Weeden Island and Safety Harbor times, but the artifacts were not described.
Another multicomponent artifact scatter (8Pa54), known as the Upper Hillsborough 9 site, also contained ceramics and lithic artifacts. Though artifact types were not described on the FMSF form, the site was
classified as occupied from Deptford through Safety Harbor times.
The Briarwoods site (8Pa66) was a small Safety Harbor burial mound salvaged in 1980. Two flexed burials were recovered, with many secondary remains above them. Some of the burials were surrounded by sand stained with red ochre (Mitchem 1985a:162). Artifacts included a ground stone celt, a shell gorget, a flaked stone celt, shark teeth, shell beads, and aboriginal ceramics. Pottery types indicated that the site was a Safety Harbor mound (1985a:163-164). Attempts to locate an associated habitation site were unsuccessful.
Four artifact scatters (8Pa123A, 8Pa125G, 8Pa126E, and 8Pa129) were located in 1983 (Wharton 1984). The FMSF forms indicate that aboriginal ceramics and lithic artifacts were recovered at each of these sites, and they were dated to Weeden Island and Safety Harbor times. Pinellas points were recovered at 8Pa123A, 8Pa125G, and 8Pa129 (Wharton 1984).
The River Road Site A (8Pa158A) is a lithic scatter that yielded a single Pinellas projectile point base (Wharton 1984). The site is identified as a Safety Harbor site on the FMSF form based on this artifact, but it could be a late Weeden Island-related site.
The Pottery Hill site is a previously unrecorded site near Dade City. The site originally had a mound which was levelled with a bulldozer many years ago. Local informants claimed that this mound was flattopped, about 2 m high, and about 12 m across (William G. Dayton, personal communication 1986).
A habitation area is located adjacent to the
supposed mound site. Surface collections from this area contained many projectile points, including specimens of the Pinellas, Tampa, Hernando, Bolen, Lafayette, Newnan, and Florida Archaic Stemmed types (Bullen 1975). Pottery consisted of Pasco Plain, sand tempered plain, St. Johns Plain, St. Johns Check Stamped, Prairie Cord Marked, and Safety Harbor Incised. Various lithic artifacts and BusycPon fragments were also recovered. The artifacts indicate a Safety Harbor component at the site, with possible earlier components. Several low burial mounds (8Pa9), which were destroyed in 1946, were located less than .75 km north of Pottery Hill, and may have been associated (see discussion of 8Pa9 above).
Another site, the Evans Creek site (8Pal68), is
located about 1.6 km away. Local informants report that Pinellas projectile points and Safety Harbor pottery types were surface-collected from this site (William G. Dayton, personal communication 1986).
A Safety Harbor Incised bowl with a restricted neck and a flared rim is in the SFM collection (#2325). The lip is also notched. The vessel came from an unknown site in Pasco County.
Neill (1978:224-225) indicated that Safety Harbor sites are abundant in Pasco County, primarily in inland areas which have recently been developed. Though he did not mention any specific sites, he noted that at least three Safety Harbor cemeteries (as opposed to mounds) had been found in the county, and that majolica had been recovered from some of the area's larger Safety Harbor sites.
Pinellas County, along with Hillsborough and Manatee Counties, is the region of the greatest concentration of Safety Harbor sites. Unfortunately, it is also an area that has undergone very heavy development with consequent destruction of numerous archaeological sites (Williams 1975).
One of the most famous sites in Pinellas County is the Weeden Island site (8Pil), which was partially excavated by archaeologists from the Smithsonian Institution in 1923 and 1924 (Bushnell 1926:129-132; Fewkes 1924; Willey 1949a:105-113)-. Though this was the
type site for the Weeden Island period, there was a minor Safety Harbor component at the site, as evidenced by some of the pottery types recovered. Willey (1949a:109-ll) listed a small number of Englewood and Safety Harbor sherds in the NMNH collection from the site. Their exact provenience is unknown. Bushnell (1926:131-132) collected and illustrated part of a Sarasota Incised vessel (NMNH #330622) from the surface of the burial mound. A collection from the site in FMNH (#A-2612) contains some Safety Harbor Incised sherds mixed with a predominantly Weeden Island assemblage. A collection in YPM (#4572) also includes some Safety Harbor Incised and probable Pinellas Incised sherds, as well as a sherd with a notched lip (possibly the late variety of Pinellas Plain).
The Safety Harbor site (8Pi2), on the west side of Old Tampa Bay, is the type site for the Safety Harbor archaeological culture. It was first mentioned in print by Daniel Brinton (1859:118, 171). Several decades later, S. T. Walker (1880a:410-411) visited the site, then known as Phillippi's Point, but was refused permission to excavate. Twenty years later, C. B. Moore (1900:356) was also refused permission to dig at the site.
Two mounds were present, one a low sand burial
mound located at the northern end, and the other a large truncated "temple" mound at the southern end. At the time of Walker's visit, part of the truncated mound had been eroded by storm action, and he was able to observe that it was composed of alternating sand and shell layers (1880a:411). Habitation areas were apparently located around the latter mound, close to the bay shore areas (Griffin and Bullen 1950:Figure 1).
Several major episodes of excavation have been undertaken at the site during the twentieth century. Stirling (1931:171-172) excavated the burial mound in 1930, removing about 100 secondary burials, along with aboriginal and European artifacts. Fifty of the crania were studied by Hrdlicka (1940:339-340, 373), but apparently most of the skeletal remains were discarded (B. William Burger, personal communication 1986). A contemporary newspaper account indicates that over 1400 burials were removed during these excavations (Anonymous 1930).
Willey (1949a:138) listed the sherd counts and
types from the burial mound (NI4NH #351513-351525) and from the habitation area between the mounds (NMNH #351526-351536, 362378-362386), which was also tested by Stirling. Stone, shell, bone, and European materials
from both contexts were also described. The ceramic assemblage from these excavations consisted almost completely of Safety Harbor types, with no earlier Weeden Island types present.
In August, 1948, the FPS excavated in the top of the large truncated mound and in portions of the presumed habitation area (Griffin and Bullen 1950). The artifacts recovered from this work (FMNH #97199-97225, 97231-97234) consisted of Safety Harbor and Leon-Jefferson (Mission Period) types, with no Weeden Island materials. Great quantities of Pinellas Plain sherds were recovered from the presumed habitation area, indicating that this was the primary utilitarian ware at the site.
A small collection of faunal remains collected during these excavations is housed in the FMNH Zooarchaeology Laboratory (#91). The collection is heavily biased toward large elements because the material was not screened, and only those bones noticed during excavation were kept. As would be expected from a coastal site, the assemblage consists primarily of marine fauna, with some terrapins, birds, and mammals (Kozuch 1986:Table 1).
Additional excavations were conducted at the site in the late 1960s by several local groups of amateur
archaeologists (Gustave A. Nelson, Sr., personal communication 1986). The results of this work have not been published, but material from the excavations displayed in the Oldsmar Museum and in the Pinellas County Courthouse in Clearwater includes Pinellas projectile points and sherds of Safety Harbor Incised, Pinellas Incised, Point Washington Incised, Englewood Incised, Lake Jackson Plain, and Pinellas Plain pottery. Some bird head adornos from the site were illustrated by Gorges (1979).
The site has been surface collected many times in the past, and some of these collections are housed in FMNH (#3041-3373, 5202-5218). They contain typical Safety Harbor sherds and lithic artifacts, as well as a surprising number of Archaic projectile points. A possible stone tool was collected from the site by Armistead (1949).
The European items found at the site are of great interest, because most researchers feel that the Safety Harbor site is the town of Tocobaga visited by Pedro Mendndez de Avilds in 1567 (Bullen 1978b; Solis de Merds 1964:223-229). European artifacts from the site in FMNH, NMNH, and other places are listed in Table 6.
Goggin (1953:11, 1954a:152-153) indicated that the sherd of Yayal Blue on White majolica and the Portuguese
Table 6. European Artifacts from the Safety Harbor Site (8Pi2).
Ceramics (all in FMNH, except where noted):
Olive Jar (includes 2 strap handles) 43/2
Green Lebrillo 1/0
Unglazed red coarse earthenware 1/0
Unglazed coarse earthenware strap handle 1
7 Yayal Blue on White majolica (Florida State
University [FSU]) 1
Portuguese copper ceitel coin (location unknown) 1
Iron axes (NMNH #351513 & 384087) 2
Rolled sheet silver bead (NMNH #351514) 1
/ Sheet silver ornament 1
Clay pipe fragments (1 is a green-glazed human head
effigy) (NMNH #351536 and 362386) 3
coin were collected from the beach adjacent to the site.
The iron axes, rolled sheet silver bead, and sheet
silver ornament were recovered during the burial mound excavations (Goggin 1953:11; Stirling 1931:172; Willey
1949a:139). Willey (1949a:Plate 57) illustrated the
three European pipe fragments from the site, and noted
that they came from excavations or surface collections in the village area (1949a:139). The green-glazed pipe fragment matches a reproduction of a Moravian pipe in the type collection at FMNH. The 8Pi2 specimen was probably associated with the early nineteenth century homestead of Count Odet Phillippi on the site (Griffin and Bullen 1950:7-8).
The Olive Jar handles are from early style Olive Jars, indicating a date of 1500-1570 or 1580 (Deagan 1987:33; Goggin 1960:23, 27). The copper Portuguese ceitel (identified by Sydney P. Noe of the American Numismatic Society in 1952) could have been minted any time during the reign of John III of Portugal (1521-1577) (Goggin 1954a:153). Melado is generally found in early sixteenth century contexts, while Yayal Blue on White majolica and Green Lebrillo date from the late fifteenth to the early seventeenth centuries (Deagan 1987:Table 4-1). The diversity of these artifacts, along with the presence of Leon-Jefferson wares (Griffin and Bullen 1950:11), suggests the possibility that several different episodes of contact may be represented at the site. However, it is likely that some of the artifacts were obtained by exchange with other aboriginal groups in the area, or as tribute from subordinate settlements.
The description of the town of Tocobaga and its location, provided by Solis de Merds (1964:224), strongly suggests that the Safety Harbor site was indeed the cacique Tocobaga's town, which was visited by Menendez. The town was 20 leagues inland (this apparently means 20 leagues from the mouth of Tampa Bay), "and one could sail up close to the side of his house by a channel of salt water" (Solis de Meras 1964:224). The account also mentions steering north from the mouth of the bay to reach the town. Once contact was established, Mendndez left 30 soldiers and a captain (1964:228), who then constructed a blockhouse in the town (1964:242).
The Jesuit priest Juan Rogel, along with Pedro
Mendndez Marqudz, visited the garrison some months later and found things going well (Lyon 1976:202; Zubillaga 1946:276). However, when they returned in January, 1568, they found the town deserted and that all of the Spaniards had been killed (Lyon 1976:203; Zubillaga 1946:295-296). The European artifacts from the Safety Harbor site could represent material evidence of this garrison, as none of them dates solely to a post-1568 period. The Leon-Jefferson wares could also be from this episode of contact.
The Safety Harbor site is remarkable because it appears to be a single component site with two mounds and a large habitation area, representing an intensive Safety Harbor occupation with no underlying Weeden Island-related component (Griffin and Bullen 1950; Willey 1949a:137, 141). Many Safety Harbor sites in the Tampa Bay area are multicomponent, and unmixed habitation or midden areas are rare.
The Safford Mound (8Pi3) near Tarpon Springs was excavated by Frank H. Cushing (1896:352-354), who provided only a brief general description of his findings. W. H. Holmes (1903) illustrated some vessels from the mound. Moore (1903:433) claimed that this was the Ormond Mound excavated previously by Walker (1880a:396-399, Plate III), but the evidence is inconclusive. Walker's description was of a sand mound. 29 m in diameter and 1.5 m high, which yielded secondary burials, cremations, and sherds (1880a:396-399).
Using Cushing's notes and photographs along with the collection (now housed in the University of Pennsylvania Museum [UPM] and FMNH), Bullen et al. (1970) and Smith (1971:131-133) published descriptive reports on the excavations and the recovered artifacts. The reports included descriptions and illustrations of pottery and other artifacts from the mound. The pottery
types revealed occupation from Deptford through Safety Harbor times. The Safety Harbor component was represented by Englewood Incised, Sarasota Incised, Pinellas Plain, Pinellas Incised, Lake Jackson Plain, and Safety Harbor Incised sherds and vessels (Bullen et al. 1970; Smith 1971:131-133). Unfortunately, exact provenience information was not recorded, so very little is known about associations.
The mound was originally roughly circular in shape, with a diameter of approximately 39 m, and a maximum height of 1.8 m. It was surrounded by borrow pits. Two pottery caches were noted on the east side, and Cushing identified at least three strata of burials (Bullen et al. 1970:84). More than 600 burials were excavated, consisting mostly of secondary interments with a few primary extended burials (Cushing 1896:353).
The Johns Pass Mound (8Pi4), located on a small island along the Gulf coast, was first excavated by Walker (1880a:401-403). He described an oval-shaped sand mound measuring about 15 m by 7.6 m, with a height of less than 1 m. He mentioned a large number of sherds, apparently concentrated beneath extended burials, many of which were subadults. An undescribed glass bead (NMNH #35643) and a well-made rolled sheet
silver bead (#35642) were recovered from the mound surface.
Moore (1903:434-436) excavated at the site several decades later, removing flexed burials and discovering a large secondary bone deposit. He mentioned staining from red ochre and 10-12 Busycon cups, but generally the burials were not accompanied by artifacts. His illustration of sherds (1903:Figure 88) reveals that Safety Harbor Incised and Pinellas Incised wares were abundant. Check stamped sherds and fragments of a single shell tempered vessel were also mentioned. This may be the site mentioned by Bethell (1914:54-55), who dug part of the mound (he encountered no artifacts), and collected some human bones which he intended to send to the Smithsonian Institution. Whether or not these reached the Smithsonian is not known. Additional collections from the Johns Pass site are in YPM (#21582) and the R. S. Peabody Foundation (RSPF) (#38978 and 39319).
A collection of sherds from the site was
illustrated by Ostrander (1960). These sherds represent vessels of Pinellas Incised, Safety Harbor Incised, Point Washington Incised, and (according to William Sears) Fort Walton Incised. Sears also identified Lake Jackson Plain, St. Johns Plain, St. Johns Check Stamped,
Pinellas Plain, and sand tempered plain sherds in the collection (Ostrander 1960:77).
Griffin and Smith (1948:28) cited Bushnell
(1937:34) as identifying the glass bead recovered by Walker as a Florida Cut Crystal specimen, but it appears that they were in error. The bead described by Bushnell was from the Maximo Point site (1937:33).
The Clearwater site (8Pi5) was apparently a complex of two large (approx. 90 m long and 3-4.5 m high) linear shell mounds with a smaller one between them, and a graded path leading to a freshwater pond about 140 m away (Walker 1880b:419). Willey (1949a:332-333) classified sherds and a Busycon pick in NMNH (#35638, 43098-43101, and 88409), which were probably from this site. The pottery indicates a Safety Harbor occupation with an underlying late Weeden Island-related component (see also Table 19).
A collection in NMNH (#363066) from an island site (midden?) known as the Boca Ciega Island site (8Pi6) contains mixed late Weeden Island and Safety Harbor pottery types, along with sand tempered plain sherds (Willey 1949a:333). A single rim sherd of shell tempered ware from the site is in FMNH (#A-2614). Willey (1949a:333) also listed two Pensacola Plain (a shell tempered Fort Walton type) sherds from the site.
The Bayview site (8Pi7) was a mound excavated by S. T. Walker (1880a:410). He described it as a sand mound 14 m in diameter, and less than a meter high at its summit. Burials were deposited in three strata. Most interments were apparently secondary, though his description suggests that some primary burials may have been present. In association with burials in the upper two strata, Walker (1880a:410) found large numbers of glass and metal beads, brass and copper ornaments, a pair of scissors (NMNH #35313), and a looking glass fragment (#35314). The large collection in NMNH also contains a Flushloop bell (#35318), an early style Olive Jar neck (#35320), and the basal portion of a majolica vessel (#35327). This latter specimen is of particular interest. It appears to be part of an albarelo, or drug jar (Lister and Lister 1976:13). It is sloppily decorated with dark green enamel over a gunmetal gray glaze. There is a carefully executed round hole in the base, suggesting that the aborigines "killed" the vessel prior to interment. Willey (1949a:334) identified four of the aboriginal sherds from the site as Safety Harbor types.
A card in the FMNH site file indicates that the beads listed in Table 7 were collected from Walker's spoil dirt. The present location of this collection is
Table 7. Beads Collected from S. T. Walker's Spoil
at the Bayview Mound (8Pi7).
Drawn opaque turquoise blue (Ichtucknee Blue) Drawn transparent dark blue Yellow oval
Spherical yellow Spherical colorless Ovate royal blue with 3 spiral white stripes Gooseberry (spherical) Gooseberry (ovate) Cornaline d'Aleppo Short royal blue cane with 3 groups of 3 red stripes Chevron (undescribed) Transparent dark blue seed Drawn transparent dark green Fragments of opaque turquoise blue unkno
Spherical silver coin beads Rolled sheet silver Shell:
unknown. However, it may have been catalogued as part of the Seven Oaks (8Pi8) collection (see below). A
silver tablet (NMNH #35343) was also recovered from Bayview by Walker (Allerton et al. 1984:28).
The NMNH collection (#35334-35345) includes many strings of glass beads from the mound. These have not yet been analyzed, but a cursory inspection revealed the presence of tumbled chevrons, faceted chevrons, opaque turquoise blue, eye beads, transparent green spheroid, barrel-shaped gooseberry, Florida Cut Crystal, spheroid Cornaline d'Aleppo, a few faceted transparent blue (typically found on Seminole sites), and a diverse collection of seed beads.
Willey (1949a:333) noted that the exact location of the Bayview mound was uncertain. It is probable that this is the same site as the Seven Oaks mound (8Pi8), said to be "located about one-half mile west of Seven Oaks" (Willey 1949a:334). This statement suggests that there was a town or settlement called Seven Oaks at one time. However, a local resident who directed excavations at the site in the 1960s noted that Seven Oaks was merely the name of a U. S. Post Office southwest of Alligator Lake in Pinellas County (Gustave A. Nelson, Sr., personal communication 1986). He produced a map which had the locations of the Seven Oaks Post Office, the town of Bayview, and the excavated mound plotted. From this, it appears that both sites
are the same, a single mound south of Alligator Creek. The location matches both Walker's (1880a:410) description of Bayview and Willey's (1949a:334) location for Seven Oaks.
In addition to Walker's excavations, a number of episodes of excavation and collecting have occurred at this site, which is now completely destroyed. A sizeable collection of material from the site is curated at FMNH, some of which was identified by Willey (1949a:334-335). His identifications indicate a Safety Harbor mound with both a Weeden Island-related component and substantial evidence of European contact.
Most of the FMNH artifacts were obtained during the first two decades of the twentieth century by T. Van Hyning. Local residents obviously knew of the site, because three of them donated many artifacts to FMNH, including an extensive collection of European beads. In addition to the aboriginal pottery reported by Willey (1949a:334) and a large collection of shell beads, the FMNH collection includes the European items listed in Table 8.
The FMNH catalog lists 228 glass beads from the site, but only 147 are present in the collection. Goggin (1954b:Figure Ib) illustrated a brass or bronze plummet from the site, but it is not in FMNH. The FMNH
Table 8. European Artifacts from the Seven Oaks Site (8Pi8) in FMNH.
Columbia Plain majolica (early variety) 5/2
Lead-glazed coarse earthenware (probably Spanish
Storage Jar) 2/0
Faceted chevron (olive/barrel-shaped: navy blue/
white/red/white/transparent light blue/white/
thin transparent light blue core) 2
SFaceted chevron (barrel-shaped: cobalt blue/white/
red/white/transparent medium blue/white/
transparent medium blue/thin white core) 1
Small Nueva Cadiz Plain (transparent cobalt blue) (IIAle)* 1
Small Nueva Cadiz Plain (transparent medium blue) (IIAlf)* 1
Opaque white seed 5
Translucent dark purple seed 3
Wire-wound transparent light-medium blue seed 24
Drawn medium transparent blue seed 5
Patinated translucent yellow or amber-colored seed,
possibly wire-wound (VIDlc?)* 1
Transparent light green seed 1
Spherical transparent medium green seed 2
oblate colorless seed 1
Opaque turquoise blue seed 2
Olive-shaped/spheroid opaque turquoise blue seed 2
Donut-shaped opaque turquoise blue large seed 2
Oblate transparent medium aquamarine blue large seed 1 Spherical drawn opaque turquoise blue 8
Barrel-shaped drawn opaque turquoise blue 2
Drawn spherical translucent navy blue 1
Drawn barrel-shaped medium translucent blue 1
Drawn barrel-shaped medium transparent blue 3
Drawn barrel-shaped medium translucent cobalt blue 2 Spherical transparent light/medium blue 6
Spherical translucent cobalt blue 1
Drawn barrel-shaped transparent aquamarine blue 1
Spherical/oblate transparent aquamarine blue 9
Oblate transparent yellow 2
Olive-shaped transparent yellow 1
Olive or barrel-shaped translucent cobalt blue with
marvered facets 4
7Spherical transparent purple (IBlg)* 2
Olive-shaped colorless Gooseberry 1
Spherical/barrel-shaped colorless Gooseberry 3
Small oblate colorless Gooseberry 1
Spherical colorless 1
Spherical transparent emerald green 1
Small short tubular medium transparent blue 1
Small heat-altered tubular transparent cobalt blue 1 Small spherical colorless 2
Small olive-shaped opaque medium blue (VIDIh)* 2
Small olive-shaped/spheroid transparent medium blue 3 Small olive-shaped/spheroid transparent cobalt blue 1 Small olive-shaped transparent medium green 3
Small olive-shaped/spheroid translucent medium blue with marvered facets 7
Small oblate transparent medium blue with marvered facets (large seed size) 2
Small spherical transparent medium green with marvered facets 2
Small spherical transparent medium emerald green (large seed size) 3
Drawn tubular opaque medium blue 1
Small barrel-shaped opaque turquoise blue/thin white/turquoise blue core 1
/'Small spherical Cornaline d'Aleppo 1
Spheroid transparent light green with 2 opaque white
and 2 opaque brick red alternating longitudinal
Tubular transparent emerald green with 3 opaque white
on wide brick red stripes 1
Drawn olive-shaped transparent yellow-green with
2 opaque white and 2 opaque brick red alternating
longitudinal stripes (a double bead) 1
Spherical transparent medium blue-green with 2 wide
opaque red and 2 thin opaque white alternating
longitudinal stripes 1
Spherical transparent medium blue with 2 opaque
white and 2 opaque brick red alternating
longitudinal stripes 2
Large drawn olive-shaped transparent medium blue
with 2 opaque white and 2 opaque brick red
alternating longitudinal stripes I
Small olive-shaped translucent yellow with 3 opaque
white and 3 opaque brick red alternating
longitudinal stripes 1
Spherical transparent medium green (large seed size)
with gilded exterior 1
Olive-shaped molded colorless or pale transparent
yellow with gilded exterior 1
Large olive-shaped spiral flute molded pale
transparent yellow with gilded exterior 1
Olive-shaped opaque medium blue Eye bead with
4 chevron insets 1
Tubular composite bead (translucent cobalt blue/thin
white/translucent cobalt blue core): 3 sets of
3 opaque red spiral stripes on exterior 1
Florida Cut Crystal (oblate, faceted) 3
Florida Cut Crystal (oblate, spiral faceted) 1
Spherical smooth polished colorless quartz 1
Large spherical true amber 1
Faceted garnet (12 linear facets, olive-shaped, sharp
equatorial ridge, 6 facets on each hemisphere) 2
Large spherical clay bead with gilded exterior 1
Drilled silver rod bead 3
Barrel/olive-shaped silver bead 3
Spherical/oblate silver bead 3
Silver coin bead 3
Hammered silver object with engraved design Perforated copper or brass disc
*Designation in the Smith and Good (1982) typology.
catalog also listed a musket ball in the collection, but this could not be located.
In the late 1960s a group called the Safety Harbor Area Historical Society (SHAHS) excavated what was left of the mound. Though a report has not been completed, they reportedly excavated 76 secondary burials, with many aboriginal and European artifacts (Gustave A. Nelson, Sr., personal communication 1986). Some of these objects were on display at the Oldsmar Museum, and are listed in Table 9. Many other glass beads similar to the ones in the FMNH collection were also excavated by SHAHS. Several Busvcon cups and shells, and a large number of sherds of Safety Harbor and Weeden Island pottery types were also on display at the Oldsmar Museum.
Many of the glass beads from Seven Oaks (and those attributed to Bayview) are early sixteenth century types (Smith and Good 1982), but a large percentage are late sixteenth or seventeenth century or later types (Deagan
Table 9. European Artifacts from the Bayview/Seven Oaks
Mound (8Pi7/8Pi8) Displayed in the Oldsmar Museum.
Olive Jar (some with handles) many
Lead-glazed coarse earthenware many
Columbia Plain majolica (early variety) 3
Faceted chevron 5
Olive-shaped white with 3 wide spiral blue stripes on
exterior (IB3e)* 1
Colorless Gooseberry (shape not recorded) 1
Drawn opaque turquoise blue 6
Drilled silver rod bead 2
Spherical silver bead 4
Iron scissors 1
Possible spoon 1
Possible knife 1
* Designation in the Smith and Good (1982) typology.
1987). The Columbia Plain majolica, Olive Jar sherds with handles, and early style Olive Jar neck suggest an early sixteenth century contact (Deagan 1987:33, 56-57; Goggin 1960, 1968). These data indicate at least two episodes of European contact. This interpretation is
supported by ethnohistoric accounts of early sixteenth century and later contacts in the area (Solis de Merds 1964; Swanton 1985). The mound may have been used by people occupying the Safety Harbor site (8Pi2) during the protohistoric period. Other protohistoric habitation sites have not been recorded in the immediate vicinity.
The Karlton Street Mound (8Pi13) is about 200 m south of the Hirrihigua Mound (8Pii08), near the southern end of the Pinellas peninsula. It is apparently the same site known as the Circle Drive site (8Pi30), which Walker (1880a:406-407) called Pinellas Point 1 (Robert J. Austin, personal communication 1988). Local informants report that a sand and shell causeway previously connected this site to the Hirrihigua Mound (Robert J. Austin, personal communication 1988). The site is described as a midden or mound of sand and shell, measuring 30 m across and 1.5-1.8 m high. The proximity of this site and the Hirrihigua Mound suggests that they are contemporaneous, but a collection in FMNH (#A-2616) from 8Pi30 contains a single Busycon shell, some quartzite pebbles, and sherds of sand tempered plain and Norwood pottery. The Norwood pottery indicates a late Archaic date (Phelps 1965), and no
diagnostic Safety Harbor artifacts are known from the site.
The Mullet Key site (8Pi16), consisting of a shell midden and two possible sand mounds, was recorded by John Griffin (1951b), who collected eight sherds of Pinellas Plain from the surface (FMNH #99708). Based on these, he assigned a Safety Harbor date to the site. However, it should be noted that Pinellas Plain also occurs in late Weeden Island-related contexts in the region (Luer and Almy 1980:211).
Private collections from a site recorded as 8Pi1O5, east and south of 8Pi16, include Pinellas Plain (with at least one notched lip), possible Pinellas Incised, sand tempered plain, Pasco Plain, St. Johns Plain, grog tempered sherds, faunal remains, and a chert flake (Robert J. Austin, personal communication 1988). These materials probably came from part of the same site, and indicate that a Safety Harbor component is present.
The Dunedin Temple Mound (8Pi17) is listed in the FMSF as a Safety Harbor mound, but Walker (1880a:399) recovered no artifacts in his excavations there. The rectangular, flat-topped mound, now destroyed, measured 24 m x 48 m, with a height of 2.7 m (Luer and Almy 1981:130).
The site called the Point Pinellas (sometimes
spelled Pinellos) Mound (8Pi18) presents a problem in interpretation. This is recorded in the FMSF as a large, flat-topped mound composed of sand and shell, and was first described by Walker (1880a:407). He assigned No. 10 to the mound, and noted that it was oblong, 7.6 m high, had a ramp on the west side, and was steep-sided (1880a:407). His excavations yielded burials, pottery, projectile points, and tools, but these were subsequently lost in an accident.
The problem involves the location of the site.
Walker's (1880a:406) map was not very accurate, and he seems to have confused cardinal directions in some of his descriptions. Two decades later, C. B. Moore (1900:355-356) visited the site and excavated part of it, encountering plain pottery, a bone tool, and a chert point fragment. He also mentioned a sand and shell causeway extending about 34 m to the south. The same site was described some years later by Bethell (1914:5152) and Wainwright (1916:142-143).
This site is probably the Hirrihigua Mound
(8Pil08), which is still preserved in a residential neighborhood of St. Petersburg (Goodyear 1972:29; Luer and Almy 1981:131). This mound originally had a shell causeway extending out from the south side (Goodyear
1972:29). Recent research suggests that 8Pi18 is indeed the Hirrihigua Mound (Robert J. Austin, personal communication 1988). The truncated pyramidal configuration of the mound suggests that it is a Safety Harbor mound, but the possibility exists that it is a Weeden Island-related site.
On the southwestern end of the Pinellas peninsula, the Maximo Point site (8Pi19 and 8Pi31) is located. This large multicomponent site was first recorded by Walker (1880a:404-405, 1880b:419), who explored the site and excavated a few test pits. He described the site as consisting of a 4.6 m high mound, flat on top, which extended for several hundred feet in length. He also noted a ramp on the south side. In addition, Walker mentioned other earthen and shell features at the site, which he was unable to record accurately due to extremely heavy underbrush (1880a:405). His excavations produced only a few sherds and a wooden post which had been sharpened at one end. A collection in NMNH (#35775) includes a Florida Cut Crystal bead and some small Cornaline d'Aleppo beads collected by Walker at the site (Bushnell 1937:32-33). These beads probably date to the second half of the sixteenth century or later (Deagan 1987:168, 180; Smith 1987:31).
C. B. Moore visited the site about two decades
later, and produced a map of the most prominent mounds and causeways at the site (1900:Figure 1). He also noted that many other earthworks and shell middens were present, but not included in the map. Though the landowner refused permission to excavate, one sand mound was tested and yielded some poorly preserved human skeletal material (Moore 1900:354).
The extensive earthworks were later described by John Bethell (1914:53), who had a ranch and fishery at the site for a few years before the Civil War. The next mention of the site was a commentary by R. D. Wainwright (1916:142). He evidently did not excavate, but described some of the earthworks and shell middens.
John K. Small also mentioned a "serpentine
aboriginal mound running east and west for about a quarter of a mile" at Maximo Point (1929:41). He did not investigate the site.
The first excavations at the site directed by a
trained archaeologist were conducted by William Sears in the late 1950s (Sears 1958b). His research revealed that the midden and mound area tested was a Safety Harbor occupation. over 92% of the pottery from the excavations was Pinellas Plain, with other common Safety Harbor types comprising the rest of the ceramic